Steve Shriver – Achilles Tendon from a Medical Perspective
If you've been following our coverage of Steve Shriver and his amazing Organic Endurathon, you've likely heard that he's run into a roadblock - his Achilles tendon. It's not ruptured or torn, but it is enflamed and causing him a great deal of pain. On the advice of his doctor, he's taken a day off his Organic Endurathon to rest.
We Nomadik Fanatiks are outdoor enthusiasts, but we're not marathon runners. So, we called in some experts to show Steve that he's made the right choice today. And if you're not sure where the injury is, this picture should help:
"The achilles tendon has a poor blood supply compared to other
tendons in the body, thus making it an area that is more vulnerable to injury.
An achilles injury may take more time to heal. People who have ruptured their
achilles tendons often report feeling like someone hit them in the back of the
leg with something."
~ Dan Rootenberg, owner of SPEAR Physical Therapy Center. He's been featured on Newsweek, The New York Post and Good Morning America.
"He has likely developed inflammation of his Achilles tendon or the tissue around it. By running such long distances with so little rest between marathons, he is putting his Achilles tendon at risk for an overuse injury. He will likely experience continued or increasing pain and swelling along his Achilles tendon.
It is possible that if he continues running daily marathons, he could rupture his tendon, which could require surgery and would shut him down for months.
If he insists on persisting with daily marathons, he should stretch his tendon before and after the runs and ice his tendon for 20 minutes several times a day, including shortly after he runs."
When he finishes his
10 marathons, he should definitely take some time off from running to allow his
tendon to rest and heal."
David Geier, Jr., M.D.
Director, MUSC Sports Medicine
Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery Medical University of South Carolina
"I'm not a medical expert, but a marathon runner, and I ruptured my Achilles tendon the first marathon I ran. I'd tell him to stop now. I felt the early signs of Achilles problems before I started running my race, then it ruptured at mile eight. The recovery period took six months.
I'm fine now and have run 10
marathons since, but those six months were terrible. I couldn't walk
without a limp the whole time, and the pain was pretty excruciating."
Get lots of rest today, Steve. We're all rooting for you!