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Peroneal Tendon Injuries

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Learn more about peroneal tendon injuries and its symptoms and treatment options.

There are two peroneal tendons in your foot, and they serve as connective tissue that attaches bone to muscle. These tendons stabilize the foot and ankle. Injuries to the tendons can be acute (sudden) or chronic (develop over time). There are three main types of peroneal tendon injuries: tendonitis, tendon tears, and subluxation.

  • Injuries are more likely to develop in individuals with high arches
  • It can also be caused by repetitive ankle motion in sports

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Symptoms

Symptoms for peroneal tendon injuries depend on the type of injury that is experienced:

  • Tendonitis can cause pain and swelling, and the area can be warm to the touch
  • Acute tears can cause pain, swelling, and weakness or instability in the foot or ankle
  • Degenerative tears can cause intermittent pain on the outside of the ankle, weakness or instability of the ankle, and an increase in arch height
  • Subluxation can start with a snapping feeling and then cause intermittent pain behind the ankle bone and ankle instability

Treatments

Early treatment is important for peroneal tendon injuries, and depends on the type of injury. Some common treatment approaches include:

  • Immobilization, like with a cast, is used to keep the foot from moving so that it can heal
  • Medications can reduce pain and inflammation
  • Physical therapy can strengthen muscles and increase range of motion

Surgery may be needed to repair the tendon and the supporting structures around it.

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