Achilles tendon bursitis is inflammation of the fluid-filled sac (bursa) located either between the skin of the back of the heel and the Achilles tendon (posterior Achilles tendon bursitis) or in
front of the attachment of the Achilles tendon to the heel bone (anterior Achilles tendon bursitis, retrocalcaneal bursitis). Typical symptoms include swelling and warmth and a tender spot at the
back of the heel. The diagnosis is based on symptoms, an examination, and sometimes x-rays. Treatment is aimed at relieving the inflammation and, depending on the location of the Achilles tendon
bursitis, eliminating the pressure on the back of the heel. The Achilles tendon is the tendon that attaches the calf muscles to the heel bone. Posterior Achilles tendon bursitis is often associated
with formation of a bone prominence called Haglund deformity or ?pump bump? on the heel bone. Anterior Achilles tendon bursitis is also called Albert disease or retromalleolar bursitis.
High impact activity, such as running. Trauma to the heel such as jumping from a height. Increase in training levels. Lack of shock absorbency in the trainers worn. Worn running shoes. Poor
biomechanics. Loss of the fat pad under the heel. Increase in weight.
Pain at the back of the heel at the attachment site of the Achilles tendon when running. Pain on palpation of the back of the heel or bottom of heel. Pain when standing on tiptoes. Swelling and
redness at the back and bottom of the heel.
A physical examination will be performed to determine if you have any signs of Achilles Bursitis or other ankle injury. He/she will look and feel the soft tissue and bones in your ankles to note any
differences between the two of them. This will identify any abnormalities, such as swelling, bone deformities, atrophied muscles, redness and/or warmth on the skin. In many cases, the first sign that
you have Achilles bursitis is swelling in the back of the foot and ankle pain.
Non Surgical Treatment
Cold compresses can help reduce the initial swelling and pain in acute (short-term but severe) soft tissue conditions. Cold therapy is usually most effective during the first 48 hours after swelling
begins. Guidelines for cold therapy include. Use a cold gel pack, a bag filled with ice cubes, or even a bag of frozen vegetables. Wrap the pack in a towel if the cold temperature is too painful.
Place the cold pack over the area for 20 minutes, three to four times a day. Rub an ice cube over smaller painful areas for a short time. After 48 hours, or for chronic (long-term) pain, dry or moist
heat may be more helpful than cold compresses. Follow these guidelines. Use a hot pack, a heating pad, or a damp towel heated in the microwave (make sure it's not too hot or it may burn your skin).
Place a hot pack over the painful area for 15-20 minutes, three to four times a day. Never use analgesic creams or rubs with heat packs because the combination could severely burn your skin. Take a
warm shower or bath.
Bursectomy is a surgical procedure used to remove an inflamed or infected bursa, which is a fluid-filled sac that reduces friction between tissues of the body. Because retrocalcaneal bursitis can
cause chronic inflammation, pain and discomfort, bursectomy may be used as a treatment for the condition when it is persistent and cannot be relived with other treatments. During this procedure, a
surgeon makes small incisions so that a camera may be inserted into the joint. This camera is called an arthroscope. Another small incision is made so that surgical instruments can be inserted to
remove the inflamed bursa.