Achilles tendinoscopy and plantaris tendon release and division in the treatment of non-insertional Achilles tendinopathy

Foot Ankle Surg. 2012 Jun;18(2):124-7. doi: 10.1016/j.fas.2011.04.008. Epub 2011 May 26.


Background: The mainstay of treatment for non-insertional Achilles tendinopathy is non-operative, however a proportion of patients will fail conservative measures. We describe the results of Achilles tendinoscopy with plantaris tendon release in patients who have failed first line conservative treatment for at least 6 months.

Methods: A consecutive series of 11 patients with a minimum of 2 years follow up.

Results: The mean AOFAS scores significantly improved from 68 pre-op to 92 post op (p=0.0002) as did the AOS scores for both pain (28% pre-op to 8% post op (p=0.0004)) and disability (38% pre-op to 10% post op (p=0.0005). The mean SF-36 scores also improved but were not statistically significant (pre-op 76, post op 87 (p=0.059). There were no complications. 8 of the 11 patients were satisfied, the other 3 somewhat satisfied.

Conclusions: The results of Achilles tendinoscopy and division of the plantaris tendon are encouraging but further studies are required to compare it to other treatments. It is minimally invasive and low risk so should not affect the ability to perform a formal open procedure if unsuccessful.

Publication types

  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / surgery*
  • Adult
  • Endoscopy*
  • History, 21st Century
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Orthopedic Procedures / methods
  • Tendinopathy / surgery*
  • Tenotomy*
  • Young Adult