Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapy is a Gilbert physical therapy provider that offers a wide range of services to patients across the Valley. We create a customized plan for each patient that is tailored to your specific needs to ensure success. To schedule a free assessment with one of our amazing staff members, simply go online here today. For more information about Gilbert physical therapy and what we can offer, follow our blog!
Gabe Lucas, PT, CSCS, and owner of our Gilbert-Mesa location, has been practicing physical therapy for over 15 years. He has extensive experience in outpatient orthopedics and treating sports injuries, including tendonitis and tendinosis. He explains what causes these conditions and how to prevent them.
The posterior tibialis is an important muscle that runs from the lower leg down to the ankle, then fans out into different bones of the foot. It absorbs shock when a person is running or walking, making it a common source of injury for runners, soccer players, and other athletes. It is typical for individuals to experience a gradual onset of pain across the inner part of the lower leg and/or ankle with increases with activity. When this increase in activity occurs, the muscle may become irritated due to overuse, which can result in posterior tibialis tendonitis. If not treated early and properly, the tendonitis may develop into a more chronic issue called tendinosis—the formation of scar tissue in the muscle’s tendon.
Physical therapists can treat posterior tibialis tendonitis as well as tendinosis. If patients seek treatment early enough, physical therapy can help prevent fibrosis from occurring with exercise prescription, manual therapy, and the use of modalities such as ultrasound and e-stim.
These methods are used to help decrease irritation and inflammation within the tissue. It is most common for physical therapists to see patients when the issue has unfortunately progressed to a chronic and fibrotic state. In this case, treatment techniques such as instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization and trigger point dry needling are very effective in stimulating blood flow to the area. This stimulation will help commence the healing process and is the first step in assisting the patient with returning to their prior level of function.
Finally, the most vital component of physical therapy is to determine the cause of posterior tibialis tendonitis/tendinosis. There are several possible causes including flat feet, improper footwear, altered lower extremity biomechanics, recent injury, or a dramatic fluctuation in activity. The therapists at Foothills are trained to analyze the causes of tendonitis, and can help you with any issues you may have. If you are experiencing inner ankle pain, inner lower leg pain, or pain with walking or running, please contact your Foothills physical therapist for a free consultation