Over the past few months I've had some on and off issues with my Achilles tendon. It flares up and I limp a bit...hear a bunch of "The foot doctor needs a foot doctor" comments from my Houston podiatry patients. As I write this I'm route to North Carolina where I was invited to speak at their state podiatry meeting.

Once an Achilles tendon is inflamed, it doesn't take much to make it worse. In my case running through the Houston airport trying to catch my flight (Thanks TSA!!!) in shoes not conducive to running. When I got up to deplane at my connection, I was hurting. I stopped in the Charlotte airport to pick up some overpriced Aleve which is helping but I really need to beat this thing.

The problem is that the Achilles tendon is not very easily treated. Oral anti-inflammatory medication are not always effective. We are limited in what can be injected into and around the Achilles tendon too. For instance, a cortisone injection can never be used to treat the Achilles tendon, since there is a risk that the tendon would weaken and rupture.

Restricting the motion around the tendon is another option. When I get home (or if a vendor at the conference has one for me) I will wear a gauntlet ankle brace to rest the tendon. I'll also use some Biofreeze to treat the tendon topically. If that doesn't work, a fracture walker will rest it even more. Add to that physical therapy and possibly some shockwave treatments, I should have this thing licked. Sounds involved? Sounds complicated? Sound frustrating? It is!

Treating Achilles tendinitis requires tremendous patience and strict adherence to the treatment plan. The biggest challenge will be to follow my own advice. In law, they say when you defend yourself you have a fool as a client. I'm pretty sure that would apply in my case as well! Doctor...heal thyself!!
Dr. Andrew Schneider
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Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.
We must take care of our feet while running.Wearing running shoes specifically designed for the sport can help prevent many foot pain problems.If you have persistent foot pain while running, see a podiatrist. otherwise foot pain while running is not normal.
by Calgary Podiatrist August 30, 2012 at 04:35 AM
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