Achilles Tendon Injury
Achilles, or calcaneal tendon is one of the thickest and strongest tendons of the human body. Achilles tendon injury arises only if it is exposed to loads that do not comply with its strength, for example, a direct hit of great strength or sudden muscle contraction.
The causes of Achilles tendon injury
The main task of the Achilles tendon implies its active role in walking, thus it absorbs and holds back any traumatic movement that may occur as a result of sudden jumps, climbs, running and so on. The most common Achilles tendon injury occurs when a person steps with the foot on the hill and then the toe slips and tendon undergoes dramatic tension.
Factors contributing to the injury of the Achilles tendon:
- Deformed calcaneus.
- Too high foot arch.
- Calves and thigh arch are not stretched enough.
- Bending the legs (O-shaped).
- The habit to step on the back side of the heel.
- Turn the foot inward when walking.
- Physiological stiffness of the Achilles tendon.
Sprain or rupture of the Achilles tendon
Achilles tendon Injury usually occurs between the age of thirty and fifty. Fitting rupture, is usually located from three to five centimeters above the attachment of the tendon to the calcaneus. These injuries are often the result of sharp sudden load, for example, during a jump when the foot is bent sharply. If the tendon is subjected to shock its partial damage or complete rupture may occur.
The most common symptoms include:
- Sharp pain.
- Difficult flexing of the foot (there is a pain).
Diagnosis and treatment of Achilles tendon injuries
In most cases, radiography in the diagnosis of Achilles tendon injuries is useless. But the presence of the shin bone fractures on the X-rays may indirectly indicate the damage of calcaneal tendon. To diagnose fractures or sprains of Achilles tendon there is usually used ultrasound or MRI.
Treatment of stretching tendons implies in the use of the fixing belt, splints. If Achilles tendon ruptured, surgical means of treatment in order to restore its integrity are necessary.
The surgery is performed under local anesthesia. The surgeon cuts through the skin in the area of the gap that separates the ends of the tendons form other tissues and sutureds them. After the removal of dressing (plaster) special exercises aimed at restoring the mobility of feet are appointed. Rehabilitation period entirely depends entirely on the severity of the injury. Full load on the leg after the operation is possible only after 9-10 weeks.
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