The achilles tendon is a large cord of soft tissue found at the back of the ankle that connects the calf muscles to the heel.
The achilles frequently becomes injured and overused, resulting in pain. There are, however, other factors such as: weakness in the muscles of the hips, flat feet, tension in the muscles of the back of the legs (hamstring and calf muscles), and weakening of the tendon that can all cause achilles tendinitis.
It is not uncommon for patients to present with a combination of these causative factors.
When the achilles tendon becomes injured, the individual will often experience stiffness, pain, swelling and/or a lump on the achilles. In the beginning stages the achilles may only be stiff and painful with the first few steps in the morning, but if left uncared for it may become stiff and painful all the time. It is usually at this later stage that we get patients suffering from achilles tendinitis come limping into the clinic asking if acupuncture can help with the pain.
Pain in the achilles tendon can go by a few different names. The three most common being:
Achilles Tendinitis - Refers to an acute injury of the achilles tendon that has sparked a painful inflammatory reaction of tendon.
Achilles Tendinopathy - Is a chronic or long standing painful condition of the achilles tendon.
Achilles Tendinosis - Refers to a non-inflammatory degenerative condition of the achilles tendon.
At Poke Acupuncture we have a very specific acupuncture treatment approach to achilles tendinitis. Therapy begins with a thorough western orthopedic assessment where we test for muscle imbalances in the hips, tension in the posterior chain (muscles on the backside of the body) and investigate the structural integrity of the arches of the feet. Specific therapies will be chosen depending on your needs and assessment findings. Some of the therapies that will be utilized may include: acupuncture, dry needling, electro- acupuncture, massage therapy, cupping therapy, kinesio taping, herbal liniments, stretching and corrective exercises.
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Registered Acupuncturist and Herbalist