The strongest, largest tendon in the body is the Achilles tendon. This is the thick band of tissue that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. You use your Achilles tendon whenever you walk, jump, run, dance, or basically just move around using your legs. Sometimes, with overuse or wear and tear, this tendon can become very irritated and swollen, causing extreme pain in the area at the back of the heel, especially when walking or running. Some symptoms of Achilles tendinitis include calf muscles that feel tight and uncomfortable, a limited range of motion in the foot, and the skin on your heel might feel warm to the touch. This condition is diagnosed as Achilles tendinitis.
Achilles tendinitis can happen to anyone who walks excessively, wears high heels or poorly fitting shoes, or has heel bone spurs. The condition tends to occur more often in athletes, especially runners and professional sports athletes. Some people find that home treatment, such as the RICE method (rest, ice, compression, elevate), works to relieve pain and swelling. There are times, however, when you’ll need a physician’s advice when the inflammation doesn’t subside, as ignoring Achilles tendinitis can lead to a possible tendon tear. At the Spine Institute Northwest, our Sports Medicine Clinic is ready to help treat your pain, teach you how to avoid re-injury and learn preventative care techniques.
If home treatment is not working, you may wish to consult Dr. Solomon Kamson, MD PhD, to diagnose your condition. Though some patients may require surgery to repair Achilles tendinitis, Dr. Kamson may opt to first attempt a much less invasive procedure using biological stem cells to heal and repair tendon and ligament damage. Using a non-invasive therapy to treat Achilles tendinitis is much preferred over traditional surgical techniques, which can leave patients incapacitated for months while recovering. Regenerative medicine using stem cell injections is a non-surgical alternative to spine and joint issues. Stem cells such those as from platelet-rich plasma (PRP), are used to help alleviate pain and improve function, strength and reduce swelling. The stem cell treatments are directly injected at the tendon to begin the treating the impaired tendon and tissue as pain is reduced. This type of regenerative medicine can allow you to avoid surgery and recover quickly as the body’s natural healing abilities are boosted.
With the use of stem cell therapy for Achilles tendinitis, Dr. Kamson has found that most patients experience relief from pain within one or two days after treatment. The anti-inflammatory effect of the stem cell therapy can last for up to two or three months, during which time patients can then begin to become active once again. During the stem cell treatment, Dr. Kamson will use ultrasound or other visualization techniques to direct an injection at the injured site to accelerate healing and restore true cellular health to the tendon.
If you are suffering from Achilles tendinitis or have other issues affecting your ligaments, joints, ankles, or spine, contact Dr. Solomon Kamson today. Call us at the Spine Institute Northwest at (888) 712-0318 to schedule your appointment.