Review Article

Skeletal Radiology

, Volume 42, Issue 12, pp 1645-1655

First online:

Imaging of plantar fascia and Achilles injuries undertaken at the London 2012 Olympics

  • David A. EliasAffiliated withDepartment of Radiology, Kings College Hospital
  • , Andrew CarneAffiliated withDepartment of Radiology, Royal Surrey County Hospital
  • , Sarath BethapudiAffiliated withGE, British Society of Skeletal Radiology (BSSR)/Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (FSEM) 2012 Fellow, London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics
  • , Lars EngebretsenAffiliated withDepartment of Orthopaedics, University of Oslo and Oslo Sports Trauma Research Centre, Oslo Norway, International Olympic Committee
  • , Richard BudgettAffiliated withInternational Olympic Committee
  • , Philip O’ConnorAffiliated withDepartment of Radiology, Leeds Musculoskeletal Biomedical Research Unit and Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust Email author 

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Plantar fascia and distal Achilles injuries are common in elite athletes. Acute athletic injuries of the plantar fascia include acute plantar fasciopathy and partial or complete tears. Underlying most acute injuries is a background of underlying chronic plantar fasciopathy. Injuries may affect the central or less commonly lateral portions of the fascia and acute tears are generally proximal. Athletic Achilles injuries may occur at the mid tendon or the distal insertion, and there may be an underlying chronic tendinopathy. Acute or chronic paratendinopathy may occur as a separate entity or combined with Achilles injury. In this article, the spectrum of athletic injuries of the plantar fascia and Achilles is described, illustrated by imaging findings from the London 2012 Olympic games.


Achilles tendon Plantar fasciitis Athletic injuries Magnetic resonance imaging Ultrasonography