Anatomy of the sural nerve and its relation to the Achilles tendon

Foot Ankle Int. 2000 Jun;21(6):475-7. doi: 10.1177/107110070002100604.


Sural nerve injury is a complication of Achilles Tendon (TA) rupture. We dissected 30 cadaveric lower limbs to describe the course of the sural nerve in relation to the TA. At the level of insertion of the TA into the calcaneum, the sural nerve was a mean 18.8 mm from the lateral border of the TA. The proximal course of the nerve was towards the midline such that it crossed the lateral border of the TA at a mean distance of 9.8 cm from the calcaneum. The significant individual variation in the position of the sural nerve in relation to the achilles tendon should be borne in mind when placing sutures in the proximal part of the achilles tendon. Percutaneous sutures should not be placed in the lateral half of the TA.

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / anatomy & histology*
  • Achilles Tendon / surgery*
  • Cadaver
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Rupture
  • Sural Nerve / anatomy & histology*
  • Sural Nerve / injuries
  • Tendon Injuries / surgery*