Preinjury and postinjury running analysis along with measurements of strength and tendon length in a patient with a surgically repaired achilles tendon rupture

Karin Gravare Silbernagel, Richard Willy, Irene Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The Achilles tendon is the most frequently ruptured tendon, and the incidence of Achilles tendon rupture has increased in the last decade. The rupture generally occurs without any preceding warning signs, and therefore preinjury data are seldom available. This case represents a unique opportunity to compare preinjury running mechanics with postinjury evaluation in a patient with an Achilles tendon rupture. CASE DESCRIPTION: A 23-year-old female sustained a right complete Achilles tendon rupture while playing soccer. Running mechanics data were collected preinjury, as she was a healthy participant in a study on running analysis. In addition, patient-reported symptoms, physical activity level, strength, ankle range of motion, heel-rise ability, Achilles tendon length, and running kinetics were evaluated 1 year after surgical repair. OUTCOMES: During running, greater ankle dorsiflexion and eversion and rearfoot abduction were noted on the involved side postinjury when compared to preinjury data. In addition, postinjury, the magnitude of all kinetics data was lower on the involved limb when compared to the uninvolved limb. The involved side displayed differences in strength, ankle range of motion, heel rise, and tendon length when compared to the uninvolved side 1 year after injury. DISCUSSION: Despite a return to normal running routine and reports of only minor limitations with running, considerable changes were noted in running biomechanics 1 year after injury. Calf muscle weakness and Achilles tendon elongation were also found when comparing the involved and uninvolved sides.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)521-529
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy
Volume42
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2012

Keywords

  • Achilles tendon Total Rupture Score (ATRS)
  • Biomechanics
  • Heel-rise test

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