How do you know when you tear your Achilles Tendon?

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Achilles Tendon

Tearing the Achilles tendon can be a painful and debilitating injury. The signs and symptoms of an Achilles tendon tear may include:

  1. Sudden and severe pain: Many people describe feeling a sudden, sharp, or intense pain at the back of the leg or near the heel. It is often described as feeling like a “pop” or a “snap” at the time of injury.
  2. Swelling: Swelling around the heel and lower leg may occur soon after the injury. The affected area may appear swollen, tender, and bruised.
  3. Difficulty walking or standing on tiptoe: An Achilles tendon tear can make it challenging to bear weight on the affected leg. Walking or standing on tiptoe may be particularly difficult or impossible.
  4. An audible sound: In some cases, individuals may hear a popping or snapping sound at the time of the injury.
  5. Decreased range of motion: An Achilles tendon tear can limit the ability to move the ankle and foot normally. Pointing the toes downward (plantarflexion) may be particularly restricted or painful.

It’s important to note that the severity of the tear can vary. In some cases, a partial tear may occur, causing less severe symptoms and allowing for some continued function. However, a complete tear or rupture of the Achilles tendon will typically result in significant pain and functional impairment.

If you suspect an Achilles tendon tear, it is crucial to seek medical attention promptly. A healthcare professional, such as an orthopedic specialist or sports medicine physician, can perform a thorough examination, which may include physical tests, imaging (such as ultrasound or MRI), and medical history evaluation to confirm the diagnosis and determine the best course of treatment.

Immediate medical attention is essential because early intervention can greatly influence the outcome of an Achilles tendon tear, and prompt treatment can help facilitate proper healing and minimize complications.