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Achilles Bursitis Symptoms

Symptoms of Achilles bursitis are often mistaken for Achilles tendinitis because of the location of the pain at the back of the heel. When you suffer from Achilles bursitis you will experience some or all of the following symptoms which are most noticeable when you begin activity after resting.

High heels can add pressure on the retrocalcaneal bursa, subcutaneous calcaneal bursa, and Achilles tendon.
  • Pain at the back of the heel, especially with jumping, hopping, tip-toeing, walking or running uphill or on soft surfaces. If tendonitis is also present, the pain can radiate away from the bursa.
  • Direct pressure on the bursa will exacerbate the pain and should be avoided if possible.
  • Tenderness and swelling which might make it difficult to wear certain shoes on the feet.
  • As the bursa becomes more inflamed you will experience swelling and warmth. In severe cases, the bursa will appear as a bump, called a "pump bump", and is usually red, and extremely tender. Swelling can cause difficulties moving as the range of motion in the ankle can be affected.
  • Limping due to the pain may occur
  • If you press on both sides of the inflamed heel, there may be a firm spongy feeling.
  • Weakness in the tendons and muscles surrounding the bursa can develop as the pain worsens and the inflammation in the area spreads.
  • Possibly a fever if you are suffering from septic bursitis (You will need to see a doctor for medication to get rid of the infection).

Achilles Bursitis Treatments

Relieving the symptoms of bursitis initially focuses on taking the pressure off the bursa. This can be done with proper cushioning, inserts, or footwear but may require surgery if it is a bone formation problem (i.e. Haglund's Deformity). If your bursitis is caused by an infection (septic bursitis), the doctor will probably drain the bursa sac with a needle and prescribe antibiotics to treat the infection.

Tight or improperly fitted footwear can add pressure to the Achilles tendon, subcutaneous calcaneal bursa, and retrocalcaneal bursa cause irritation which can lead to Achilles bursitis.

For non-infectious bursitis, the preliminary treatment starts with non-operative conservative treatment options such as cold compression and the use of an Achilles TShellz Wrap® once swelling has reduced. Surgery to remove the inflamed bursa is normally not required for bursitis, however if you fail to see improvement with the conservative treatments, your physician may recommend surgery to remove the bursa completely. Although this removes the problem of an inflamed bursa, you are left with less cushioning at the back of your heel which can lead to a host of other conditions.

The most important factor in healing bursitis is resting your foot and ankle. This can be difficult when you have to carry on with daily activities, but resting and elevating your foot whenever you can is recommended. During your recovery you will probably have to modify or avoid the activities that stress your bursa until your pain and inflammation settle.

Treatments should involve decreasing swelling, relieving pain and stress on the Achilles, correcting any bio-mechanical dysfunction (over-pronation or flat feet), treating scar tissue, and then restoring strength and movement. If you are performing an activity that could cause further trauma to the bursa, it is recommended that you protect the area with padding and/or proper footwear to prevent further irritation or damage.

Cold

The R.C.C.E. Treatment Philosophy

This treatment philosophy is used to decrease inflammation and relieve pain of bursitis quickly when it is inflamed and painful.

  • Rest and limit your activity, to decrease swelling and minimize further inflammation in the subcutaneous calcaneal bursa and/or retrocalcaneal bursa.
  • Cool the back of your heel to help reduce blood flow and fluid build up.
  • Compress the area if possible by adding light pressure to minimize swelling (make sure it is snug, but not too tight as it could cause numbness, tingling or more pain).
  • Elevate your foot to relieve the pressure from swelling and allow fluid to drain from your injured ankle.

Applying cold to your inflamed bursa will help decrease the swelling and redness around it. Cold compression will also help to numb the pain in your heel and help to control the inflammation.

Cooling the subcutaneous calcaneal bursa and/or retrocalcaneal bursa as needed throughout the day, for approximately 15 - 20 minutes at a time, is recommended. Applying cold to your tender retrocalcaneal bursa and subcutaneous calcaneal bursae is the first step in treating your bursitis. Next you can begin using the Ankle TShellz Wrap .

TShellz Wrap Circulation Boost

Once the inflammation of your bursitis has been reduced with cold it is time to improve blood flow and improve the elasticity of your surrounding soft tissue. Your body needs a fresh supply of blood to improve the health of your tissue and get your bursae, plantar fascia, and/or Achilles tendon back to normal.

bursa of the ankle

Unfortunately, when you are suffering from bursitis it is painful to walk and move your ankle normally. When you limit movement in your foot the blood flow is reduced, starving your tissue of the necessary oxygen and nutrients. The trick is to find a way to increase blood flow without causing pain and/or further inflaming the bursae. This is where Circulation Boost (Circulatory Boost) becomes a powerful tool.

The energy emitted from the Energy Pad stimulates blood flow to your foot, more than your body would ever be able to generate on it's own, giving your body the boost it needs to continue the reconditioning process.

The healing energy reaches deep into your bursae, tendons, ligaments, and fascia to speed tissue repair, whisk away the toxins and dead tissue, and rejuvenate your ankle tissues for improved elasticity.

With these easy home therapies, you will notice significantly reduced pain and an incredible improvement in your Achilles pain and ankle range of motion.

During your recovery, you may have to modify and/or eliminate any activities that cause pain or discomfort in your Achilles and heel until your pain and inflammation settle, and you gain more mobility and strength. The more diligent you are with your rehabilitation, the faster you will see successful results.


Learn more about Home Treatment Options for Bursitis

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During your recovery, you will probably have to modify and/or eliminate any activities that cause pain or discomfort at the location of your soft tissue injury until the pain and inflammation settle. Always consult your doctor and/or Physical Therapist before using any of our outstanding products, to make sure they are right for you and your condition. The more diligent you are with your treatment and rehabilitation, the faster you will see successful results!


 
 
 
 
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