Foot Care from A to Z

Thomas P. Lyman, BS; Tracey C. Vlahovic, DPM, FAPWCA


Dermatology Nursing 

In This Article

Achilles Tendon

The "weekend warrior" injury typically refers to an Achilles tendon rupture. This injury occurs in adults who may not have been as active as usual and attempt to play a competitive sport without stretching or warming up. Most patients will report hearing a "pop" in the back of their leg along with a loss of plantar flexion of the foot. The rupture generally occurs in the tendon's watershed zone, the area with least blood supply, which is located 3–4 cm proximal to the insertion of the Achilles tendon. To diagnose this defect, one can palpate the Achilles tendon and feel a gap, or squeeze the mid-calf and note a loss of plantar flexion of the foot. Common treatments for both partial and total ruptures include casting with slight plantar flexion for 4 weeks followed by 4 weeks in a neutral position lower leg cast or CAM (controlled ankle motion) walker and then physical therapy. In certain cases, primary surgical repair of the tendon edges with or without additional tendon grafting may be performed (Movin, Ryberg, McBride, & Maffulli, 2005).