Achilles Tendon Specialist

Eugene Stautberg, MD

General Orthopedic Surgeon & Foot and Ankle Specialist located in Pearland, TX

If you participate in sports, you may be at increased risk for achilles tendon injuries, including ruptures and tendonitis. At his orthopedic offices in Pearland & Houston, TX, Eugene Stautberg, MD specializes in treating conditions affecting your foot and ankle. He offers comprehensive diagnostic and treatment options, including minimally invasive surgery, to repair your damaged Achilles tendon and get you back on the playing field. Schedule a consultation online or by calling Dr. Stautberg’s office to learn more.

Achilles Tendon Q & A

What is the Achilles tendon?

The Achilles tendon is the strongest and the largest tendon in your body. The tough connective tissue links your heel bone to your calf muscle and makes it possible for you to walk, jump, and run.

While a strong, capable structure, the Achilles tendon can get overstressed, resulting in irritation and injury that causes persistent pain and limits your mobility.

Several common injuries can affect your Achilles tendon, including a tendon rupture and Achilles tendonitis.

What is a tendon rupture?

When you rupture a tendon, it means the tendon fibers connecting your heel bone to your calf muscle are separating, causing tears in your muscles. Most tendon ruptures are the result of participation in sports activities, running uphill, and sudden starting and stopping motions during activity.

Symptoms of a tendon rupture may include:

  • Severe pain in the back of the ankle
  • Swelling and tenderness
  • A loud pop at the time of injury
  • Discoloration in the skin around the back of the ankle

What is Achilles tendonitis?

In Achilles tendonitis, overuse can result in the swelling of the tendon that causes inflammation and pain. Tendonitis is a common sports-related injury that often affects people who run. When left untreated, Achilles tendonitis pain can turn chronic and interfere with your ability to walk.

Common symptoms of Achilles tendonitis include:

  • Leg weakness
  • Pain above the heel
  • Achilles tendon swelling
  • Severe pain following exercise

How is the cause of Achilles tendon pain diagnosed?

Dr. Stautberg can determine the cause of your Achilles tendon pain using imaging tests such as an MRI or ultrasound. He may also use these tests to rule out other conditions that can be causing pain in the back of your ankle.

Additionally, Dr. Stautberg performs a physical examination and reviews your medical history. He also discusses your activities, including sports participation, to determine if the pain is due to your Achilles tendon.

What treatments are available for Achilles tendon pain?

Initially, Dr. Stautberg may recommend giving your ankle and foot more time to rest in an elevated position. You may also need to apply ice several times a day to reduce inflammation.

In some cases, you may benefit from using a walking cast or boot to keep your foot and ankle immobile for more efficient healing.

If you’re young and physically active, Dr. Stautberg may recommend minimally invasive surgery to repair a ruptured or damaged tendon. Chronic Achilles tendonitis may also require surgery to remove the damaged tissue and repair.

To confirm an Achilles tendon injury, schedule a consultation online or by phone.