Functional Rehabilitation for Nonsurgical Treatment of Acute Achilles Tendon Rupture

Foot Ankle Clin. 2019 Sep;24(3):387-398. doi: 10.1016/j.fcl.2019.05.001. Epub 2019 Jun 22.


The use of early functional rehabilitation in the treatment of nonoperative Achilles tendon ruptures has been shown to provide patients with outcomes similar to operative treatments. This article describes a high-quality accelerated functional rehabilitation program that begins with early diagnosis and appropriate patient selection to allow initiation of the nonoperative protocol. Complications with nonoperative treatment of Achilles ruptures are significantly lower than with operative treatment; however, re-rupture and elongation of the tendon resulting in decreased strength are problematic and more common if patients are non-compliant. These can be minimized with good patient education, close supervision, and good communication between physical therapist and physician.

Keywords: Achilles; Functional rehabilitation; Nonoperative; Physical therapy; Rupture; Tendon.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / injuries*
  • Humans
  • Physical Therapy Modalities*
  • Rupture / rehabilitation
  • Tendon Injuries / rehabilitation*