Ankle Tendonitis Treatment


Ankle tendonitis treatment is designed to manage pain, speed healing and get you back to your normal way of living as soon as possible. Ankle tendonitis is typically caused by injury, arthritis, repetitive stress, general wear-and-tear and can be quite bothersome. The most common types are:

  • Achilles tendonitis, a common condition that occurs when the Achilles tendon, which connects the calf muscle to the ankle, becomes swollen, inflamed and painful at the back of the heel. Ankle tendonitis can be caused by bone spurs or related to flat feet.
  • Posterior tibial tendonitis, a common problem of inflammation and tenderness of one of the ankle tendons on the inner side of the ankle, just under the bony protrusion.
  • Peroneal Tendonitis, a fairly common type of ankle tendonitis often related to ankle sprains, overuse or tightness in the calf muscles. Typically, there is pain along the outside edge of the foot and ankle.


Ignoring ankle tendonitis symptoms won’t make them go away. Since surgery is typically a last resort, it makes little sense to suffer when a simple treatment plan can provide relief. While on average it takes 2-3 months for the ankle pain to fully go away, you can start to feel better quickly. Your physician will design a course of treatment that is individualized for your specific diagnosis, pain level and lifestyle. Recommendations could include:

  • Icing the affected area three times a day for 15-20 minutes
  • Decreasing or stopping any activity that causes you ankle pain
  • Avoid walking or running on hard or uneven surfaces
  • Switch to biking or swimming to reduce ankle stress
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce pain and swelling
  • Gentle stretching of the ankle
  • A brace or boot to keep the heel and ankle stabilized
  • Heel lifts/padded shoes

If these treatments do not improve symptoms, you may need surgery to remove inflamed tissue and abnormal areas of the tendon. Surgery can also be used to remove a bone spur that is irritating the tendon.

Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT), which uses low-dose sound waves, may be an alternative to surgery for people who have not responded to other ankle tendonitis treatments.


After your ankle tendonitis treatment, your doctor may recommend a short course of physical therapy to help you regain strength and flexibility, especially if you have had surgery. By and large, lifestyle changes such as finding alternate forms of exercise other than running, making sure stretching is part of your daily activity, wearing shock-absorbing shoes and even losing weight can help prevent a recurrence.