Signs and symptoms of a broken bone include:
Swelling or bruising over a bone.
Deformity of an arm or leg.
Pain in the injured area that gets worse when the area is moved or pressure is applied.
Loss of function in the injured area.
In open fractures, bone protruding from the skin.
Fractures are usually caused by a fall, blow, or other traumatic event.
Pathologic fractures are those caused by disease (such as cancer) that weakens the bones and can occur with little or no trauma...
After either type of surgery, you will likely
wear a cast, walking boot, or similar device for 6 to 12 weeks. At first, the
cast or boot is positioned to keep the foot pointed downward as the tendon
heals. The cast or boot is then adjusted gradually to put the foot in a neutral
position (not pointing up or down). Many health professionals recommend
starting movement and weight-bearing exercises early, before the cast or boot
comes off. Your total recovery time will probably be as long as 6 months.
Why It Is Done
This surgery is done to repair an
Achilles tendon that has been torn into two pieces.
How Well It Works
Both open and percutaneous surgeries are
successful. More than 80 out of 100 people who have surgery for an Achilles tendon rupture are able to return to all the activities they did before the injury, including returning to sports.1
Although percutaneous surgery has traditionally
been viewed as having higher rerupture rates than open surgery, studies now
show that the rerupture rates are similar. About 5 out of 100 people who have surgery for an Achilles tendon rupture will rerupture after surgery.2
surgery is more likely than percutaneous surgery to result in wound healing
problems. But damage to a nerve is more likely with percutaneous surgery.
Newer techniques for percutaneous surgery may make nerve damage less likely
than when older techniques are used.
It is sometimes difficult to know how surgeries compare, because the ages and activities of those having the
surgeries differ. The success of your surgery can depend on your surgeon's experience,
the type of surgical procedure used, the extent of tendon damage, how soon
after rupture the surgery is done, and how soon your
rehabilitation program starts after surgery and how
well you follow it.
Talk to your surgeon about his or her
surgical experience and success rate with the technique that would best treat
The risks of Achilles tendon surgery include:
Skin infection at the incision
Normal complications of surgery or
anesthesia, such as bleeding and side effects from
Risk of repeat Achilles
rupture. This risk, though, is typically less than the risk after nonsurgical
The possibility that the healed tendon will not be as
strong as before the injury.
Decreased range of motion.
What To Think About
An Achilles tendon rupture is
usually treated with surgery or with a cast, splint, brace, or other device
that will keep your lower leg from moving (immobilization).
When compared with immobilization, surgery provides less chance that the tendon
will rupture again and offers a shorter recovery period. There is
greater risk for wound complications in surgery, though.