The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the human body and required for vital activities, especially for a footballer, such as walking, running, and jumping. Your ‘calf muscles', on the backside of your leg, are actually a number of different muscles that unite as this tendon before inserting on the top your ‘heel bone'. This injury most commonly afflicts middle aged men. Due to the vital functions it performs and the increased weight placed on it during movements, it is easy to see how it is a target for injury.
After a thorough physical examination and imaging studies (ultrasound, MRI), your podiatric physician can assess if there is a tear of the tendon or a total rupture. Both cases typically require surgical intervention in which the injured portion of the tendon is removed and the healthy portions united by suturing. This video outlines a typical procedure:
Mr. Beckham did the best thing he could once suspecting the injury, stopping the activity. If you feel any type of severe pain, especially at the back portion of your heel, it is important you stop whatever activity you were doing to halt any further damage. The RICE principle should be utilized until you can seek out medical treatment. If you suspect an Achilles tear, or any other injury to your foot and ankle, schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomajan at Austin Foot & Ankle Specialists!