Achilles tendon repair surgery is a type of surgery to fix a damaged Achilles tendon.
The Achilles tendon is a strong, fibrous cord in the lower leg. It connects the muscles
of your calf to your heel. It’s the largest tendon in your body. It helps you walk,
run, and jump.
In some cases, the Achilles tendon can tear, or rupture. This is usually due to a
sudden, strong force. It can happen during tough physical activity. It can happen
if you suddenly move faster or pivot on your foot. Having a foot that turns outward
too much can increase your risk of a torn tendon. A ruptured Achilles tendon can cause
pain and swelling near your heel. You may not be able to bend your foot downward.
The Achilles tendon can also
degenerate. This is also known as tendinitis or tendinopathy. This might cause symptoms
like pain and stiffness along your Achilles tendon and on the back of your heel. This
most often through overuse and repeated stress to the tendon. It can happen from
repeated stress on your tendon, especially if you've recently been more active. Having
short calf muscles can increase your risk of tendinopathy.
During the surgery, an incision is
made in the back of the calf. If the tendon is ruptured, the surgeon will stitch the
tendon back together. If the tendon is degenerated, the surgeon may remove the damaged
part of the tendon and repair the rest of the tendon with stitches. If there's severe
damage to a lot of the tendon, the surgeon might replace part or all of your Achilles
tendon. This is done with a tendon taken from another place in your foot.
In some cases, the Achilles tendon repair surgery can be done as a minimally invasive
procedure. This is done with several small incisions instead of one large one. It
may use a special scope with a tiny camera and a light to help do the repair.