27-year-old heptathlete Jessica Ennis will have to extend her leave of absence from sports to prepare for her new baby and to recover from her Achilles tendon injury. “I started getting severe pain in my left heel last June but it was only after I had a few scans that doctors identified that the tendon in my Achilles had been damaged,” she said.
“All the continuous training for London 2012 had put an unbearable strain on it.” Ennis had originally wanted to participate in the World Championship in Moscow, but steroid injections weren’t enough to ease her pain, and she wanted to give it time to let it heal naturally.
The pain from an Achilles tendon injury can last for a long time if you don’t get it healed properly. One of the best ways to deal with this type of condition is to visit a podiatrist like Dr. Sorelis Jimenez of Foot Health Podiatry. Dr. Jimenez will identify how bad your injury is and advise you on whether an operation is necessary or not.
What is the Achilles Tendon?
The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body, and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can cause severe difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.
What are the symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?
There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.
Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms
- Dull to Severe Pain
- Increased blood flow to the tendon
- Thickening of the tendon
- Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
- Total immobility
Treatment and Prevention
Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation. Often the doctor will order an MRI to confirm the diagnosis. Treatment will involve rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries.
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