WHAT IS INSERTIONAL ACHILLES TENDONITIS/TENDINOSIS?
The Achilles tendon is a large powerful tendon that connects the calf muscles to the back of the heel bone. The tendon can become inflamed at the insertional aspect on the heel. This can cause aching and burning type pain along with stiffness. This can lead to difficulties with ambulation especially ascending and descending stairs. Over time the acute inflammation can lead to chronic changes in the tendon (tendinosis). This can cause tearing, thickening, and calcifications. Causes include tight calf muscles, overuse, change in activity, and flatfeet.
Treatment consists of calf stretching, icing, oral anti-inflammatories, physical therapy, and/or immobilization in a CAM boot or cast. Surgical intervention may be needed if conservative measures fail. This involves addressing the chronic changes to and around the achilles tendon. Recovery can take 4-6 months.