Nov 07

Does an Achilles Tendon Rupture Always Require Surgery?

Achilles Doctor Long Beach

As soon as your physician diagnosed that you have an Achilles tendon rupture, you will be presented to take surgery. However, it does not always require to be treated with surgery; there are other options to treating and repairing your Achilles tendon injury. You will be provided with different options based on the complexity and severity of your rupture, on your budget, and your preference.

Non-surgical Treatment

The treatment includes casting the foot with your toes pointed down. You can also opt for recasting. Ever week, a new cast will be applied and this will gradually decrease the amount of flexion that points down in your ankle, enabling your Achilles tendon to heal while increase the stretch in your tendon gradually. While you may appreciate the value of non-invasive procedures, you need to know that the recovery rates from this treatment option are not very encouraging. The non-operative care has demonstrated a re-rupturing rata from 10% to 30% as compared to the 3% to 5% re-rupturing rate in surgical procedures.

Surgical Treatment

There are 2 kinds of surgeries for treating Achilles tendon rupture.

Open surgery: Open surgery involved one large incision on the back of your leg, using a tendon transfer from your big toe or sewing cadaver tendon o the remaining parts of your own Achilles tendon in order to repair it and be strengthened.
Percutaneous Achilles Repair System (PARS) surgery: The PARS surgery is a new technique, wherein the surgeon will be repairing your torn Achilles tendon with a smaller incision. Through this surgery, the tendon that has been damaged will not be removed. Rather, the damaged tendons will be used for making the repair. This procedure creates a 2-cm horizontal incision that is located in around 4 to 6 cm above the heel and then insert the PARS device up. This surgery is made possible with a special medical device with 4 prongs – 2 going inside the leg to hold the tendon, and the other 2 going outside the leg.

Because Achilles tendon ruptures are very common, surgeons are consistently coming up with new and innovative surgical procedures to more effectively and successfully repair the Achilles tendon rupture.

Risks of Achilles Tendon Rupture Surgery

While surgery proved to have more positive results, it is not without any risks, which you need to be aware about. The factor that you need to know before deciding as to which Achilles tendon repair and treatment you should choose in surgical treatment include:

Possible nerve damage
Decrease in the range of motion of your Achilles tendon, which may require you to go with rehabilitation in order to get back to your full range of motion.
Normal complication of anesthesia and surgery
Risk of repeat Achilles tendon rupture, with the risk of around 3% to 4%.
Skin infection at the incision site
Loss of strength in the healed tendon

After going either type of surgery, you will very likely to wear a walking boot or a cast for around 6-12 weeks.