Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Understanding Achilles Tendonitis and How to Treat It



Achilles tendonitis is the inflammation of the achilles tendon due to overuse or injury and is common in athletes especially runners or those who play sports during the weekends or infrequently.    It normally develops after abrupt changes in training, training on uneven surfaces and using worn or poorly fitted shoes. If left untreated, this could lead to degeneration of the tendon.

The most common cause is overuse of the foot or excessive stress transmitted to the tendon. Too much stress will lead to micro-injury of the tendon fibers and, if not given proper time to heal, the body is not able to repair the tendon before it is injured again.

Managing Achilles Tendonitis with Conservative Managements

Mild cases of achilles tendonitis usually respond to over the counter pain medications and resting the tendon so that it may heal.

On the other hand, if the pain is chronic, Physical Therapy is often used.  A Physical Therapist will teach patient how to stretch the calf muscle and Achilles tendon to avoid injury. Strengthening of the calf muscle as well as the ankle and foot is also necessary to stabilize the ankle. Additional strengthening exercise include heel lifts and eccentric strengthening.

Physical Therapy program can also be combined with different forms of ultrasound therapy or steroid injections by a physician.

In addition, correct footwear must be worn like shoes that are softer over and under the heel.

Surgery is a rare treatment for achilles tendinitis and is only performed when the tendon is already ruptured. Surgical options include gastrocnemius recession, debridement and repair and debridement with tendon transfer. The type of surgery to be performed depends on the location of injury and the amount of tendon damage.


The most important factor to expedite healing the tendon is to seek the advise of an orthopedic or foot specialist so that treatment can begin before the damage worsens.

At Advanced Bone & Joint, our team specializes in muscle, bone and joint injuries - including sports injuries and overuse injuries. Contact us today to schedule a consult with one of our Orthopedic Specialists! We have offices in St. Peters and O'Fallon, MO.

Understanding and Treating Weightlifter's Shoulder



Weightlifter's Shoulder is a term used to classify painful wear and tear of the distal end of the collar bone and is an overuse injury that can cause small fractures along the end of the collar bone. In some instances, osteolysis or bone breakdown occurs.

The condition is know as Weightlifters Shoulders because weightlifters are commonly affected due to the repetitive motions and heavy weight bearing loads on the shoulder joint associated with weightlifting.  However, they are not the only ones affected and jackhammer operators, baseball and football players and soldiers can also develop this problem.

What Causes this Condition?
Repetitive trauma or stress from training and lifting can cause small fractures on the distal end of the collarbone. When the elbows drop below or behind the body during bench press, excessive traction on the AC (acromioclavicular) joint occurs. As a result, the shoulders are in a position of excessive extension and since the bone does not have the chance to heal prior to the next training session, the shoulder can become painful and suffer from reduced strength and range of motion.

Treatment Options for Weightlifter’s Shoulder
Treatment for weightlifter’s shoulder usually starts with conservative or non-operative management. This may include rest and changes in weight-training activities and techniques and over-training must be avoided so that the joint can heal.   A physical therapist or a weight trainer can help with activity modification and design strength training for your condition.


For those who do not improve with conservative therapy, or have significant damage to the shoulder joint, an arthroscopic surgery may be recommended. During surgery, the surgeon removes portions of the damaged end of the collarbone in a procedure known as “distal clavicle excision”.   This procedure is generally performed as an outpatient procedure and most patients are able to return home the same day as their procedure.  Physical Therapy is often recommended after surgery to improve strength and restore range of motion.  Fortunately, most patients suffer no loss of function in the shoulder after surgery and are able to resume normal activities following rehabilitation.

At Advanced Bone & Joint, our team specializes in muscle, bone and joint injuries - including sports injuries and overuse injuries. Contact us today to schedule a consult with one of our Orthopedic Specialists! We have offices in St. Peters and O'Fallon, MO.