Peroneal Tendon Injury
Peroneal Tendon Injury: The two peroneal tendons in the foot run side-by-side behind the outer ankle bone. One peroneal tendon attaches to the outer part of the midfoot, while the other tendon runs under the foot and attaches near the inside of the arch. The main function of the peroneal tendons is to stabilize the foot and ankle and protect them from sprains.
Peroneal Tendon Injury: may be acute (occurring suddenly ie: going over on ankle) or chronic (developing over a period of time). They most commonly occur in individuals who participate in sports that involve repetitive ankle motion such as football, rugby, tennis etc. In addition, people with higher arches are at risk for developing peroneal tendon injuries. Different types of peroneal tendon injuries are tendonitis, tears, and subluxation.
- Increased heat around ankle
- Ankle instability or weakness
- Repetitive sprains
Tendonitis is an inflammation of one or both tendons. The inflammation is caused by activities involving repetitive use of the tendon (certain sports), overuse of the tendon, or trauma (such as an ankle sprain).
Acute tears are caused by repetitive activity or trauma. As time goes on, these tears may lead to a change in the shape of the foot, in which the arch may become higher.
Degenerative tears (tendonosis) are usually due to overuse and occur over long periods of time. Increased risk if there are foot abnormalities such as heel misalignment or arch disorders.
Subluxation – one or both tendons have slipped out of their normal position. Subluxation can occur following trauma, such as an ankle sprain. Damage or injury to the tissues that stabilize the tendons (retinaculum) can lead to chronic tendon subluxation. Early treatment of a subluxation is critical, since a tendon that continues to sublux (move out of position) is more likely to tear or rupture.
Treatment depends on the type of peroneal tendon injury but below are some typical treatments:
- Immobilization. A cast or splint may be used to keep the foot and ankle from moving and allow the injury to heal.
- Ice, heat, or ultrasound therapy may be used to reduce swelling and pain. As symptoms improve, exercises can be added to strengthen the muscles and improve range of motion and balance.
- Strapping ankle – can help reduce excessive motion around ankle to allow tendons to heal fully and allow strengthening work to continue
- Strengthening exercises
- Orthotic insoles to improve ankle stability and reduce unnecessary stress on tendons by realignment of the foot and improving gait