If you are an active person who likes to play sports, there is always a risk of developing an inflamed tendon. With tennis players, it’s the dreaded “tennis elbow,” but athletes who do a lot of running or jumping in their sport often have issues with the Achilles tendons at the back of their heels. This is especially a problem for people who aren’t very active during the week but then overdo it on the weekends. We want to let you know why the cord at the back of your ankle is so painful and what can be done for it—including Tenex treatment for Achilles tendinitis.
The Trouble with Tendons
Inflammation of a tendon usually comes from overuse—often a combination of repetitive motion that wears out the tendon and insufficient rest that doesn’t give it time to repair itself before it is stressed again. Your body responds to disease or injury by rushing extra fluid to the area and increasing the mechanisms to fight off infection.
The result is swelling and pain, or at least discomfort. Redness and warmth may also be present. The symptoms are often worse after activity, and in the morning your Achilles tendon may be stiff and painful. This is because as your body attempts to repair the damage, scar tissue can form on the tendon.
Steps to Treating Tendinitis
As with any foot condition we treat, we usually begin therapy with conservative measures:
- Your first steps will likely be to rest from the activity, use a protective brace, try physical therapy, or take any anti-inflammatory medications (topical or oral) that we prescribe until the pain and swelling go away.
- These may not work, however, and the next step would be to use injections like steroid medications or PRP (platelet-rich plasma) treatments to aid in healing. These work to reduce inflammation and help the tissues heal more quickly.
- In the past, the third step would likely be surgery for a chronic problem that did not respond to non-invasive measures. However, that involves an incision and formation of more scar tissue—which is the problem in the first place.
Tenex to the Rescue
There is an advanced technology that gives us an alternative to surgery. Here’s how it works:
- We use ultrasound diagnostics to pinpoint the area of scar tissue and degeneration in the tendon. This will show up as a blackened area on the screen.
- After numbing the area, a process similar to the pokes a dentist makes to numb your teeth, we insert the TX MicroTip (which resembles a hollow needle) right to the spot. No general anesthetic is needed so you stay awake through the process, and the incision is tiny.
- Then we use ultrasound frequency to agitate the tip at a rate faster than the speed of sound. Using the on-screen image, we guide it exactly to the designated area and the scarred or damaged part of the tendon is gently broken down and removed, without affecting the surrounding tissue. The procedure also stimulates cell action to speed up the healing process.
Following the procedure, no stitches are needed—just a small bandage to protect the incision. Because you were not sedated, you might even be able to drive yourself home.
Quick Relief from Tendinitis Pain in Houston, TX
Since Tenex treatment for Achilles tendinitis is a minimally invasive procedure, recovery is much faster than with surgery. You may experience almost immediate relief from the pain, and the tendon itself will heal quickly. Many people can be back to normal activity within six weeks, although the extent and location of your tendon damage and your own ability to heal determines how quickly you recover.If you struggle with chronic tendon pain at the back of your foot, it is time to contact Dr. Robert Parker at Parker Foot & Ankle in Houston to discuss whether Tenex might be the answer for you. Call our office at (281) 497-2850 or use our contact form and we’ll reply within 24 hours to schedule your appointment. While you are at it, check out our book offer to get your free copy of When Your Heels Hurt...You Hurt All Over! with no further obligation.