Early motion after repair of Achilles tendon ruptures

Foot Ankle Int. 1995 Nov;16(11):705-9. doi: 10.1177/107110079501601106.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical outcome of patients treated with limited immobilization and early motion after repair of acute Achilles tendon ruptures. Thirteen consecutive patients with complete ruptures of the Achilles tendon were identified, repaired, and rehabilitated with early motion starting an average of 10 days after surgery. Active range of motion was begun at an average of 23 days and weightbearing in a walking boot was started at an average of 3.5 weeks after surgery. The average length of follow-up was 27 months. Twelve of 13 patients returned to running activities in an average of 3 months. All 12 patients who participated in lateral motion activities before their injury returned to similar activities in an average of 7 months. The patients rated their overall status at an average of 93% of their preinjury level. Follow-up Cybex testing demonstrated plantarflexion strength averaging 92%, plantarflexion power averaging 88%, and plantarflexion endurance averaging 88% of the nonindexed extremity. Early range of motion after Achilles repair is safe and there is no increased risk of rerupture in compliant patients. The patients achieved good return of plantarflexion strength, power, and endurance.

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / injuries*
  • Achilles Tendon / physiopathology
  • Achilles Tendon / surgery*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Ankle Joint / physiopathology
  • Athletic Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Athletic Injuries / surgery*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Foot / physiology
  • Humans
  • Immobilization
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Movement
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Orthotic Devices
  • Physical Endurance
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Running / physiology
  • Rupture
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Walking / physiology
  • Weight-Bearing