Pain in the tendon behind the heel
Achilles tendon injuries are one of the most frequently encountered overuse injuries reported in the active population, accounting for up to 20 percent of all running injuries. Presentation involves pain, swelling and impaired function of the Achilles which may have gradually increased over time, or happened suddenly. Your health professional generally determines whether the issue is within the tendon (mid-point) or occurring at the attachment point to the heel (insertional). This differs from Severs’ disease (commonly seen in active, growing children) which is caused by traction to the growth plate which has not yet fused as it has in adults.
Treatment includes assessing the feet and ankles for excessive lower limb muscle tightness, reduced strength, abnormal mechanics of the foot or incorrect footwear. Modifying the above factors through certain stretches, strengthening protocols and improving gait mechanics is needed to achieve long-term reduction in pain.