The most obvious sign is pain above your heel, especially when you stretch your ankle or stand on your toes. It may be mild and get better or worse over time. If the tendon ruptures, the pain is instant and severe. The area may also feel tender, swollen, and stiff.
If your Achilles tendon tears, you may hear a snapping or popping noise when it happens. You could have bruising and swelling, too. You also may have trouble pointing your toes and pushing off your toes when you take a step.
Your doctor will do a physical exam. She may want to see you walk or run to look for problems that might have led to your injury.
She also might do something called the calf squeeze test. You’ll kneel on a chair or bench or lie on your stomach on the exam table. Then she’ll gently squeeze the calf muscle on your healthy leg. This will pull on the tendon and make your foot move. Next, she’ll do the same thing on your other leg. If your Achilles tendon is torn, your foot won’t move because your calf muscle won’t be connected to your foot.