Cumulative incidence of achilles tendon rupture and tendinopathy in male former elite athletes

Clin J Sport Med. 2005 May;15(3):133-5. doi: 10.1097/01.jsm.0000165347.55638.23.


Objective: To study the cumulative incidence of Achilles tendon rupture and tendinopathy among former top-level athletes.

Design: Historical cohort study.

Setting: Finland.

Participants: Male former elite athlete cohort members (n = 785; median age, 69 years when responding to the questionnaire; range, 54-97) and their matched controls (n = 416; median age, 68 years; range, 56-94).

Outcome measurements: Questionnaire-reported Achilles tendinopathy and tendon rupture diagnosed by physicians before the age of 45 years and within the subjects' lifetimes.

Results: Cumulative incidence of Achilles tendinopathy before the age of 45 was high for middle and long-distance runners (adjusted odds ratio, 31.2 compared with controls; P < 0.001), and cumulative incidence of Achilles tendon rupture was high for sprinters (odds ratio, 14.9; P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Achilles tendon problems seem to constitute clinically significant and common problems in specific sports.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / injuries*
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Athletic Injuries / diagnosis*
  • Athletic Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Injury Severity Score
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Probability
  • Recurrence
  • Risk Assessment
  • Rupture / diagnosis
  • Rupture / epidemiology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Tendon Injuries / diagnosis
  • Tendon Injuries / epidemiology
  • Time Factors