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Family Foot Care & Surgery, LLC

A Field Guide to Tendon Injury

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A tendon injury is usually not something anyone tends to think about until it happens. But if that weekend basketball game results in pain along your foot or heel, this information might be something you’ll be glad to have brushed up on.

Basketball teammates holding injured player

Tendon injuries can range from relatively minor irritation, to tears, to a full on tendon rupture. The Achilles tendon tends to be the one in the foot and ankle most commonly abused, but the peroneal tendons and extensor tendons can also cause pain in the back of the ankle and along the top of the foot, respectively.

There are three basic grades of tendon injury:

Grade I is a mild strain to the tendon with injury to just a few tendon fibers. Pain will be mild to moderate with some tenderness, tightness, and swelling. Conservative care is usually all you need for healing.

Grade II is a moderate strain that affects several tendon fibers and can include a partial tear. There will be moderate pain, swelling, and difficulty in normal movement. This may also heal normally with conservative care.

Grade III is a full rupture. You may hear a dreaded “pop” as the tendon snaps. Whereas pain in previous grades gradually sets in, pain in this case is immediate. The foot will not be able to handle weight and surgery is usually required for a repair.

Whether you have had pain building over time or all-of-a-sudden, your first step is to stop any activity that could injure the tendon further! Next, consult Dr. Sanjay Patel at Family Foot Care & Surgery. You’ll receive a full examination and the treatment you need to ensure a return to activity as quickly yet safely as possible. Call either of our offices at (203) 876-7736 for Milford or (203) 288-4055 for Hamden.

Dr. Sanjay V. Patel
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Dr. Patel has over 20 years of experience in the field of podiatric medicine and podiatric surgery.
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