The Achilles Tendon is the large tendon in the back of the ankle that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. These muscles are essential for walking, running and jumping. The Achilles Tendon withstands a great deal of stress during normal daily life. Achilles Tendonitis occurs when the muscles and tendon are overused, causing irritation and inflammation of the tendon.
There are two types of Achilles Tendonitis:
- Insertional Achilles Tendonitis, which affects the lower portion where the tendon attaches to the heel. This can occur at any age
- Non-Insertional Achilles Tendonitis, which affects the middle part of the tendon and there is swelling and thickening in this area. This is most common among young active people
Hardening (calcification) of the damaged tendon fibres can occur in both types of Achilles tendonitis.