Orthopedic Center with Orthopedist and Arthroplasty Services

Achilles Tendon Rupture

Tendon ruptures usually affect athletes, owing to the high intensity of their physical activities. The Achilles tendon rupture occurs in the lower part of the calf, in the region connecting the muscles of the calf to the heel.

When the tendon is overstretched, there may be a complete or partial tear that can cause intense pain and make movement difficult. To understand the condition, its causes, and treatments, continue reading the information below.

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When the Achilles tendon is ruptured, you may experience a sound similar to that of a pop or snap. At the same time, a sensation of acute pain arises in the anterior part of the ankle, and limits your mobility.

The rupture of the Achilles tendon can happen due to various factors. These include activities that place intense pressure on the tendon, a lack of stretching before activities or exercises, and continuous use of high-heeled shoes.

For Achilles tendon ruptures and pectoralis tendon ruptures, get in touch with our specialists and we will help treat your condition.

When the tendon ruptures, your injury may have a degenerative character, being preceded by untreated Achilles tendonitis.

People who commonly experience this injury play one or more of the following sports:

  • Fitness
  • CrossFit
  • Soccer
  • Racing
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Volleyball

The Achilles tendon is particularly susceptible to rupturing when it’s in the initial phase of executing a movement. Men over the age of 30 are also at a greater risk of this injury.

Fortunately, adequate stretching before any physical activity helps reduce the risk of rupturing your Achilles tendon.

The symptoms

The most common symptom, reported by those who suffer from Achilles tendon ruptures, is the feeling that someone has thrown a stone at your ankle. There is a sudden, sharp pain in the back of the ankle that’s often accompanied by the sound of a loud pop. After the initial symptoms, the site of the rupture begins to exhibit a depression just above the heel.

If it’s a complete rupture, you’ll feel severe pain first, followed by stiffness and swelling. Additionally, a bruise will appear on the spot and your calf will be unable to perform routine movements.

Plantar flexion (bending the tip of the foot) becomes practically impossible, as does the ability to walk on tiptoes quickly. In most cases, the rupture is complete instead of partial.

 

Breach diagnosis

The Thompson test is most often used to confirm the rupture of the Achilles tendon. In this test, the calf muscle is tightened on both sides, with the patient lying face up. If your foot can’t be moved during this test, it’s a sign that the tendon has ruptured.

This is an efficient diagnosis method as it eliminates other possibilities by isolating the Achilles tendon. The Thompson test removes the probability of other tendons continuing to allow some weak movement.

The physical examination is accompanied by radiography to ensure accurate diagnosis. MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) and US (ultrasonography) can also be used, providing useful insight to determine the appropriate treatment.

 

Surgical treatment

The surgical treatment for an Achilles tendon tear is called tendon repair. The surgery is performed with local or regional anesthesia, so that the patient does not feel pain. However, you may experience some discomfort after the surgical procedure is complete.

The procedure begins with an incision in the back of the ankle. To prevent any discomfort when wearing shoes in the future (as there could be friction between the shoes and the surgery scar), the incision can be made on the side.

Resistant sutures are then placed on the two stumps of the tendon, after the torn ends of the tendon have been identified. These sutures are then ligated in order to repair the Achilles tendon.

Most Achilles tendon repair surgery-related complications may appear at the wound healing stage. In this region, skin healing is a primary area of concern.

This surgery is perhaps the most effective and successful treatment method. Most patients are able to resume routine activities within a few weeks.

 

Tendon surgery—its risks and benefits

Evaluating a surgical procedure—including its risks and benefits—is vital before you select any treatment. This helps us determine the best treatment plan for your unique needs, symptoms, and lifestyle.

Similarly, we consider your options and outcomes when we recommend tendon surgery. We believe the surgery should offer more benefits and fewer risks compared to non-surgical treatment options.

Prompt recovery and return to routine activities, as well as a reduced risk of re-rupture, are a few of the many benefits of tendon surgery. Each unique case should be evaluated carefully prior to surgery. We offer treatment plans based on the latest medical research and our patients’ expectations and demands regarding the final results.

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Unidade Higienópolis
Sala de espera com amplo espaço e conforto para a família que espera por uma consulta de ortopedia geral ou ortopedia infantil.

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Unidade Higienópolis
A clínica Artroplastias do ortopedista em São Paulo, Dr. Felipe possui sala para acolher o paciente e família.

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Unidade Higienópolis
Sala para um exame ortopédico completo, cujo objetivo é o diagnóstico preciso. A indicação de uma artroplastia de quadril se baseia no estudo clínico e radiográfico cuidadoso do paciente.

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