The Peroneal tendons are located on the lateral side of the ankle (side furthest from the midline of your body). When these two tendons become inflamed they may cause pain around the backside of the ankle, over the lateral side of the heel where they course under a prominent bump in your heel bone. Individually the tendons also have their own unique path to pain when they're inflammed. Pain can occur where the short one inserts in the base of your fifth metatarsal bone. It can also occur where the long one dives under the foot and inserts into the first metatarsal bone.
The causes of this are commonly chronic sprains of the ankle associated with a high arched foot, direct injury to the tendons, severe flatfoot, fractures and spurs, and damage or rupture of the ligament that holds them behind the ankle.
The diagnosis is made by clinical examination where the two muscles are tested against resistance, direct pressure to the tendon, ultrasound, and MRI exam.
Treatment is aimed at the reduction of inflammation through immobilization followed by physical therapy, treatment of the underlying mechanical problem (eg. flat foot or high arched foot) with orthotics, and by repair of the injured tendon, bone, or ligament.
For an appointment with one of our Seattle podiatrists, call 206-368-7000 or request an appointment online.