POSTERIOR TIBIAL TENDONITISDo you have pain anywhere along the length extending from behind your inside ankle bone to the inside border of your foot? If so, you may be suffering from posterior tibial tendonitis which can be treated by one of the foot and ankle specialists at Foot & Ankle Center of Iowa.

The tibialis posterior is a muscle which originates in the back of the lower leg deep to the calf muscle. Around the junction of the middle and bottom 1/3 of the lower leg, this muscle gives rise to a tendon; the posterior tibial tendon. The tendon courses downward, traveling immediately behind the inside ankle bone, prior to curving and coursing toward the inside border of the foot. The tendon then gives rise to its primary insertion, into a knob of bone that you can feel through the skin called the navicular tuberosity, before diving deep into the bottom of the foot and fanning out to insert into multiple bones.

Injury of the posterior tibial tendon can occur acutely, such as when starting a new activity after being inactive for a period of time, or it can be a result of overuse in which the tendon is not adequately supported and undergoes repetitive stress leading to progressive injury to the tendon. There is generally a distinctive pattern to the symptoms of posterior tibial tendinitis which will help guide your foot and ankle specialist to an accurate diagnosis. Upon initial standing and walking, there is a sharp, stabbing pain. Typically, after a short period of mobility, the pain will either wane or completely subside for some time so long as you remain mobile. With long periods of mobility or standing you are likely to begin to experience a deep, aching, burning, and throbbing sensation to the involved region.

When you visit Foot & Ankle Center of Iowa, your foot doctor will perform a complete exam to determine if you are suffering from posterior tibial tendonitis. If caught early, posterior tibial tendinitis is nearly always amenable to conservative treatment. The mainstay of conservative care is aimed at relieving strain from the tendon and resolving the associated inflammation. Depending on the severity of your symptoms and what your foot and ankle specialist feels is the best course of treatment for you, conservative care may include oral anti-inflammatory medications, icing, orthotics, bracing, physical therapy, activity modification, and/or immobilization of the tendon in a walking boot.

If left untreated, posterior tibial tendonitis can progress to a more severe condition known as posterior tibial tendon dysfunction which you can read about in a separate blog. If you are experiencing symptoms and feel that you may be suffering from posterior tibial tendonitis, contact Foot & Ankle Center of Iowa to make an appointment to be evaluated by one of our foot and ankle specialists.

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