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What is a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?



A partial tear of the Achilles tendon is an incomplete tear in the large tendon which joins the muscles of the calf to the heel bone. Physiotherapy is an important treatment for a partial tear of the Achilles tendon.


How does a partial tear of the Achilles tendon happen?



Partial tears of the Achilles tendon are caused when the calf muscles are contracted strongly. A strong contraction can overstress the tendon, causing it to tear. This commonly occurs in sports when changing direction quickly, lunging or jumping.


What are the symptoms of a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?



If the Achilles tendon is partially torn pain is felt in the back of the lower leg. This can often feel like you have been kicked in the back of your ankle. There may also be an audible snap, crack or tear. Swelling may be present around the Achilles tendon and you may have difficulty walking due to pain and calf weakness. Other symptoms include:

What should I do if I have a partial tear of my Achilles tendon?



To control the amount of bleeding and swelling in the tissues, the RICE regime should be followed (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation).


What shouldn’t I do if I have a partial tear of my Achilles tendon?



If you have partially torn your Achilles tendon, you should not undertake activities which increase blood flow to the tendon and, therefore, increase bleeding and swelling. These include hot showers, calf-stretching, heat rubs, the consumption of alcohol and excessive activity.


Physiotherapy treatment for a partial tear of the Achilles tendon.



No matter what your previous level of activity was, physiotherapy is essential in the treatment of a partially ruptured Achilles tendon. Initially, your physiotherapist can diagnose your injury and determine a treatment programme. This may involve referral to other medical professionals. Physiotherapy treatment may involve:

Could there be any long-term effects from a partial tear of the Achilles tendon?



As long as they are appropriately treated, most partial tears of the Achilles tendon heal. Depending on the severity of your injury healing may take a number of weeks to months.

To arrange a physiotherapy appointment call Physio.co.uk on 0330 088 7800 or book online.


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