Your Achilles tendon joins your calf muscle to your heel. You can tear your Achilles tendon if you land hard on your heel during sports, from a jump, when accelerating, or when stepping into a hole.
Surgery to repair the Achilles tendon is done if your Achilles tendon has been torn into 2 pieces.
To fix your torn Achilles tendon, the surgeon will:
After that, the surgeon will:
Before surgery is considered, you and your doctor will talk about ways to take care of your Achilles tendon rupture.
You may need this surgery if your Achilles tendon has torn and separated.
You need your Achilles tendon to point your toes and push off your foot when walking. If your Achilles tendon is not fixed, you can have problems walking up stairs or raising up on your toes. However, studies have shown that Achilles tendon tears can successfully heal on their own with similar outcomes as surgery. Talk to your doctor about which course of treatment is best for you.
Risks from anesthesia and surgery are:
Possible problems from Achilles tendon repair are:
There is a small chance that your Achilles tendon could tear again. About 5 out of 100 people will have their Achilles tendon tear again.
Always tell your health care provider:
During the days before the surgery:
On the day of the surgery:
Work with your providers to keep your pain in control. Your heel may be very sore.
You will be wearing a cast or splint for a period of time.
Many people can be discharged the same day of the surgery. Some people may require a short stay in the hospital.
Keep your leg elevated for as much as possible during the first 2 weeks to reduce swelling and promote wound healing.
You will be able to resume full activity in about 6 months. Expect full recovery to take about 9 months.
Reviewed By: C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, San Francisco, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.