HOW TO TEST FOR ACHILLES TENDON INJURIES
The Achilles tendon is positioned behind the leg, extending from the lower back muscle to the back of the foot, It connects the back muscles to the lower bone structures behind the foot. The Achilles tendon enables humans to walk, run or carry out physical and sporting activities and functions. Often a problem with the Achilles tendon makes it hard for any serious physical activity to take place. Successful diagnosis of the Achilles tendon problems is critical to a successful treatment of the condition.
- Physical Examination,
- Thompson Test,
- Step 1
Back Leg Muscle Squeeze
One of the simple known techniques to test if one's Achilles tendon has sustained any kind of injury is through the back leg muscle squeeze. The normal Achilles tendon moves when the upper back leg muscles are squeezed. This is the first test which could be conducted by anyone experiencing pains on the Achilles tendon. Keep your leg straight and squeeze the lower portion of the back muscles connecting the upper portion of the achilles tendon.A normal achilles tendon would react to the squezing action through a motion or movement.
- Step 2
Physical exams can check for ruptures and other injuries to the tendon. Through palpating with the fingers, tenderness, swellings, nodules, decrease in mass and unusual warmth can be felt. Through these simple manuevers, doctors can detect problems of the achilles tendon.
- Step 3
X-rays are often used to examine the Achilles tendon and diagnose problems associated with it. An X-ray of the back of the leg would show the calcaneus. Doing an X-ray allows doctors to check to see whether the Achilles tendon is severed or partially detached from the bone to which it is connected. Oftentimes ruptures are observed which may require reattachment.
- Step 4
The Thompson test is often used to evaluate possible ruptures of the Achilles tendon. This test is considered the most reliable test of the Achilles tendon. The Thompson test is an advanced form of the muscle squeze test, but in this case the test is administered physically by doctors. No machines are used, just doctor's fingers do all the work. Often medical exams include the Thompson test during which the Achilles tendon is evaluated for ruptures.
Tips & Warnings
- Accidents on the lower part of the foot could damage or affect the Achilles tendon. Any accidents or injuries near the Achilles tendon, even if minor in nature if untreated may eventually impair the normal functions of the Achilles tendon