Muscle and Tendon Problems
Muscles and tendons are major players in allowing you to move. Your tendons connect your muscles to your bones. These tough fibrous cords have some give but not a lot of stretch. Because they have fewer blood vessels than your muscles, they take longer to heal if you strain them.
You won’t know the extent of your problem without a proper examination. Here at Bay Area Foot & Laser Podiatry Group, we’re experts in treating muscle and tendon problems. Please let us take a good look so you don’t accidentally make it worse. During your visit, Dr. Jonathan Huey thoroughly examines it and determines the best recovery plan for you.
What should I do?
If it’s an emergency, please don’t hesitate to seek immediate medical assistance.
When it comes to muscles and tendon problems, we believe it’s always best to err on the side of caution. We invite you to come in and see Dr. Huey for a comprehensive examination. As a foot and ankle specialist, he’ll determine the extent of your injury and help you recover from it as soon as possible. In the meantime, here’s what you can do at home if you have a foot or ankle injury. Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation—remember, RICE is nice.
Rest. Please stay off it as much as you can until we can evaluate it. Any activity might make your injury worse.I
Ice. Please ice it as soon as possible to decrease the inflammation. Do this for 15 to 20 minutes every three to four hours for the first 48 hours.C
Compression. Please wrap it with an elastic compression bandage snuggly but not too tightly—you don’t want to cut off your circulation.E
Elevation. With some pillows, please elevate it so that it’s higher than your heart. This helps decrease the swelling.
Ankle & Heel Pain
DID YOU KNOW?
The Achilles tendon is named after the mythological Greek warrior whose only point of weakness was his heel. Also known as the heel cord, this tendon connects your calf muscle to your heel bone. Despite the fact that it’s the largest and strongest tendon in the body, injuries to it are quite common, especially among athletes. It often comes up in conversations about muscle and tendon problems.
If you put too much stress on the tendon too quickly, such as doing a repetitive exercise without properly stretching first, you could develop Achilles Tendinitis (inflammation of the Achilles tendon). Runners and weekend warriors are prone to getting it. Common symptoms include pain, swelling, soreness, stiffness, and tenderness. If it’s tendinitis, then it should get better within days to weeks.
Achilles Tendonosis is a degenerative condition in which the tendon is more likely to develop micro-tears over time. The ongoing stress that you put on these injured fibers gets in the way of your body’s natural healing ability to repair them. This leads to continued pain.
Achilles Tendon Rupture
This injury happens due to sudden force or stress. A rupture is a partial or complete tear. Sudden sensations include a pop or snap, and what feels like a painful stab in the back of your ankle or calf. One telling sign is you can’t stand on your tiptoes. Swelling will probably come on between your heel and calf. If you think you tore your Achilles tendon, then it’s very important to get it diagnosed and treated as soon as possible to avoid more damage.
Haglund’s Deformity (Pump Bump)
How this abnormal bony bump forms on the back of the heel isn’t exactly known. Probable reasons include having a tight Achilles tendon, a high arch, and even wearing high-heel pumps. Whatever the cause, the friction from your shoes rubbing against this bony enlargement can cause a lot of irritation, lead to blisters and also Bursitis (inflammation of a bursa, a fluid-filled sac that acts as a cushion).
The plantar fascia is not a tendon but a ligament that connects your heel bone to your toes. When this thick band of tissue gets inflamed, it’s called Plantar Fasciitis. With this condition, you might experience pain and swelling in the bottom of your heel and also pain in the arch of your foot. The symptoms can increase over time. Another telling sign is pain that’s worse when you get up in the morning or after you’ve been sitting for a while, but better in minutes after you start walking.
To learn more, check out this Sutter Health article about Plantar Fasciitis. We like it because it’s thorough and easy to understand, and includes useful illustrations and a good video.
DID YOU KNOW?
Two peroneal tendons run down your lower leg bone and behind your outer ankle bone. They work in tandem to stabilize your foot and ankle. If you play sports involving a repetitive ankle motion, then you’re more prone to injuring these tendons.
When one or both peroneal tendons slip out of their normal position, you may notice weakness or instability and a sporadic pain behind the ankle bone facing out. A common characteristic is a snapping feeling around the ankle bone. If you think these tendons are continually moving out of position, then you don’t want them to rupture. Please come in and see us immediately.
You can develop Peroneal Tendinitis (inflammation of the peroneal tendons) from exercising in a repetitive motion before properly stretching them, from overusing them, or even wearing footwear that doesn’t provide good support. When the tendons rub on the bone, the friction causes them to swell. You’ll probably notice pain, swelling, and a feeling of warmth when you touch them.
Peroneal Tendonosis is a degenerative condition. The tendons are more likely to develop micro-tears over time. The ongoing stress that you put on the injured fibers from your daily activity gets in the way of your body’s natural healing process to repair them. Symptoms include pain on the outer side of your ankle, weakness and instability in your ankle, and a higher arch in your foot.
The posterior tibial tendon attaches your calf muscle to the bones at the inner side of your foot. It runs down the back, then curves under your inner ankle, and ends at your arch. Issues with this tendon can cause problems like arch fatigue and flat feet.
Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD)
If you develop fallen arches as an adult, you might have PTTD which is also known as Adult Acquired Flatfoot. This condition can occur in one or both feet. Because it’s progressive, early treatment prevents it from getting worse.
The interesting characteristic of Flexible Flatfoot is your foot flattens out when you stand but arches back when you don’t. This progressive condition usually starts in childhood and gets worse into adulthood. As it gets worse, your tendons and ligaments can stretch and tear, which in turn causes pain and swelling.
People who have flat feet or high arches are more prone to developing Plantar Fasciitis, a condition when the ligament that runs from the heel to the toes gets inflamed. You might experience pain and swelling in the bottom of your heel and also pain in the arch of your foot. The symptoms can increase over time. Another telling sign is pain that’s worse when you get up in the morning or after you’ve been sitting for a while, but better in minutes after you start walking.