When the posterior tibial tendon is inflamed or torn, it is known as tibial tendon dysfunction. This is actually a common foot and ankle problem.
The tibial tendon attached the calf muscle to the inside of the foot. It holds the arch and supports the foot when walking. The tendon needs to provide stability and support to the arch of the foot, so when it is inflamed or torn, it can result in flat foot.
Orthotics and braces can help, but for more severe conditions, shockwave therapy can be the right treatment option for tibial tendon dysfunction.
What Causes Tibial Tendon Dysfunction?
An inflamed or torn tibial tendon can be caused by the following:
– Falling and injuring your foot or ankle
– Overuse of your foot or ankle (high-impact activity such as playing basketball and tennis)
– Repetitive use (running)
This foot and ankle problem is more common in women and those over 40. Obesity, diabetes, and hypertension can also cause tibial tendon dysfunction.
What Are The Symptoms Of Tibial Tendon Dysfunction?
It is best to always receive a full exam by a foot and ankle doctor in Phoenix to properly diagnose your condition. But the following are symptoms of tibial tendon dysfunction:
– Pain on the inside of the foot and ankle
– Activity makes it worse (running or walking is difficult)
– Swelling of the lower leg to the inside of the foot and ankle
– Limited flexibility
– Shape of the foot changes (collapsed arch)
Treatment Options For Tibial Tendon Dysfunction
A much safer and more effective treatment option compared to traditional surgery is extracorporeal pulse activation technology (EPAT). This treatment can be used on a number of foot and ankle conditions, including tibial tendon dysfunction.
With EPAT, in addition to a strengthening program such as toe yoga, those with tibial tendon dysfunction can find relief.
A minimum of three weekly sessions will be needed for a few weeks. Each session is ten minutes long and additional treatment may be needed for more severe cases that are seeing some positive results with EPAT.
The treatment helps damaged tissue heal over time. During the treatment, a unique set of pressure waves stimulate the metabolism to accelerate the healing process by enhancing blood circulation.
When studied on patients, no adverse effects were observed. The safe non-invasive treatments are much more affordable for patients and less time is needed for recovery.
The team at the Foot and Ankle Center of Arizona can help set you up with a new patient exam to find out if EPAT is the right treatment for you.