Updated: Oct 19, 2020
We may just have some answers for you.
I am sure you have heard that word used to describe a pain you, or someone you know has had.
But what is Tendonitis?
“Itis” at the end of a word is used when a medical condition is accompanied by inflammation.
Tendonitis basically means inflammation of a tendon.
So what is a tendon anyway?
A tendon is the tissue that connects a muscle to a bone.
With the hot summer weather comes a change in footwear, many times unsupportive footwear. Therefore, people tend to have foot pain that surfaces that they may or may not know the cause.
One condition that occurs more frequently in the summer months its increased activity and change of footwear is Peroneal Tendonitis.
The Peroneal tendons run down the outside of your lower leg behind the bony part of your ankle and attach to the outside of the foot by your little toe and to the inside of your arch in your foot.
These tendons help to stabilize your foot when you are weight-bearing to avoid ankle sprains as well as help to turn the foot outwards and stabilize the foot’s arch when walking.
What Causes Peroneal tendonitis?
People who take part in a sport that involves repetitive motion at the ankle are most prone to peroneal tendonitis.
Factors that can contribute to peroneal tendonitis include:
a sudden increase in training, particularly weight-bearing activities, such as walking, running, and jumping
improper training techniques
inadequate or unsupportive footwear
There are also some other issues that can increase a person’s risk of developing peroneal tendonitis:
Higher or lower foot arches
imbalanced muscles in the lower limbs
History or ankle injury (not rehabed properly)
Limited proprioception (your body’s ability to know where your joints are in space)
If someone fails to complete a rehabilitation program following an ankle injury, such as a sprain, they are also more likely to develop peroneal tendonitis.
Over time, the damaged peroneal tendons will thicken as scar tissue tries to repair the damaged area. This makes the tendons weaker and more prone to tearing.
What are the symptoms?
Peroneal tendonitis can either come on suddenly or worsen over time, either way producing some common symptoms:
pain at the back of the ankle
pain that worsens during activity and lessens during rest
pain when turning the foot in or out
swelling at the back of the ankle
instability of the ankle when bearing weight
the area is warm to the touch
Tips to avoid getting Peroneal Tendonitis:
Wearing appropriate footwear that properly supports the foot and ankle.
Stretching the calf and peroneal muscles. If this is during recovery, the patient should wait until swelling and pain have gone (talk to your Physical Therapist for guidance)
Increasing training workload gradually.
Maintaining a level of activity throughout recovery. This is particularly important during the off-season of your sport.
The good news!
People experiencing peroneal tendonitis will usually make a full recovery, but it will take time. It is essential not to rush back to activities before your body is ready.
Acute injuries usually will recover faster then chronic injuries, but in both cases rehabilitation is crucial. It is important for people to complete the individual program they are given in order to reduce the risk of repeat or further injury.