• 925 Clifton Ave, Ste. 107 Clifton, NJ 07013

Achilles Tendon Specialist

You may have seen a player getting escorted off the field at a sporting event due to an injury. If the injury was a torn Achilles tendon, you know how bad it can be. That athlete is most likely being taken to surgery to repair the tear. He won’t be playing for months while it heals. If you’re active and begin to feel pain in the back of your ankle, visit Dr. Velimir Petkov, DPM, for Achilles tendonitis treatment. Your podiatrist can begin a program of rehabilitation. If you have pain, see a foot doctor before you get carted off on a stretcher in extreme pain. Call Clifton, NJ podiatrist’s office for an appointment, even on short notice.

What is Achilles Tendonitis?

The Achilles tendon is the strong band of tissue that connects your calf muscles to your heel. Tendonitis occurs from overuse. Runners who suddenly increase the intensity of their runs are at particular risk of developing Achilles tendonitis. Middle-aged athletes who only work out on the weekends may be at risk of injuring the tendon.

Achilles TendonitisTendonitis is painful and mobility-limiting. You can treat your pain with conservative lifestyle treatments and over-the-counter medication. Your Northern New Jersey podiatrist at Premier Podiatry provides you with a set of exercises, stretches, and other modification recommendations that help you heal your tendonitis.

When the band of tissue doesn’t respond to these simple modifications, or if your Achilles tendon ruptures, you may need more drastic intervention in the form of surgery. When you’re at this stage, you want to rely on a top-rated foot specialist such as Dr. Velimir Petkov for your minimally invasive Achilles tendon repair. He keeps you informed of your options before beginning any treatment. Dr. Petkov performs tendon surgery so you can resume your regular exercise routine as soon as possible.

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When Do I Need Achilles Tendon Rupture Surgery?

Achilles TendonTendonitis becomes noticeable when you experience mild discomfort on the back of your leg above your ankles. Your pain increases after running or doing physical activity. The area just behind your ankle becomes inflamed. The pain may extend down to your aching heel. The ankle pain becomes more severe after climbing stairs or sprinting. The only way you may find relief is with rest.

When the severe pain doesn’t subside, it’s a clue that you may have experienced a ruptured tendon. You need immediate medical care. If the tear is bad enough, you won’t be able to walk on that foot. Your podiatrist determines whether you need Achilles tendon surgery. An alternative plan is a long-term treatment protocol to repair the Achilles tendon.

What Are Non-Surgical Options to Treat a Ruptured Tendon?

Dr. Petkov takes a full medical history before beginning any treatment. This includes finding out how long your ankle pain has bothered you. Then he examines your leg, ankle, and foot. Armed with the knowledge of your general health, lifestyle, and the level of damage to your Achilles tendon, Dr. Petkov makes a recommendation about the best treatment for your specific needs.

While Achilles tendon rupture surgery is an option, it’s rarely the first choice. Your podiatrist may recommend immobilization instead. Placing your ankle and lower leg in a cast, walking boot, brace, or splint gives the tendon a chance to heal. This treatment can be as successful as tendon surgery. Without surgery, there is the risk of rupturing the tendon in the future. Immobilization is recommended if you’re older and live a more sedentary lifestyle.

Conservative therapy is the first line of management, and it normally entails:

  • Administration of NSAIDs
  • Reduction of activity levels
  • Practicing stretching exercises
  • Practicing tendon loading exercises
  • Implementation of extracorporeal wave therapy and physiotherapy

Achilles Tendon Rupture Surgery

Dr. Petkov recommends Achilles tendon surgery if you’re healthy and active. If you have a job that requires you to stand, walk, or rely on leg strength- tendon repair surgery is the best remedy to get you back to full strength. You may have to wait about a week for the swelling to subside before you’re able to undergo the procedure.

Your doctor chooses between two surgical options. While both reattach the two broken pieces of the tendon, the approach is different. Depending on the severity of the tear, Dr. Petkov may suggest one of these types of surgery:

  • Percutaneous surgery: performed through several small incisions made on the back of your leg
  • Open surgery: done through one large incision

According to the research published by NCBI, the success rate of Achilles tendon surgery is higher than 70%. The complication rates range from 3% to 40%. Dr. Velimir Petkov performs the procedure under the most stringent protocols of safety. Hence, the risks are limited.

Achilles Tendon Rupture Surgery

How Long is Recovery from Achilles Tendon Surgery?

On average, Achilles tendon surgery recovery lasts up to 12 months. Then, you will be able to engage in sports activities. Minimal loads are permitted during the first 2-6 weeks after treatment. You will have to wear a walking boot and use crutches during this period.

Walking and driving after Achilles tendon surgery is possible after the 7 weeks. Swimming and biking are recommended to strengthen the muscles of the injured leg. Avoid overloads to make surgery recovery time shorter.

Follow the post-surgical physical therapy instructions that may include:

  • Ultrasound heat therapy
  • Massage therapy
  • Strengthening exercises
  • Regular stretching
  • Flexibility routines
  • Agility and coordination training
  • Activities to boost endurance, such as cycling

You have to wear a boot or other supportive devices for a period. A boot allows the tendon time to reattach and heal. Your expectations should remain conservative. You won’t be running any marathons for a while. Complete recovery from a ruptured Achilles tendon can take as long as six months.

Frequently Asked Questions

How To Strengthen Your Achilles Tendon After Surgery?

You may start arranging rehabilitation appointments 2 weeks after the procedure. Before that time, your leg should be kept elevated, so the surgical wounds will heal faster. Keep the incision dry, and don’t let the infection occur. Rehab after Achilles tendon surgery involves a walking boot. Still, walking is forbidden. The care after surgery includes regular dorsiflexion and plantar flexion.

In 6 weeks, you may do balancing exercises, ankle ROM, and gastroc/soleus stretching. Swimming is possible if the wounds are completely healed. For recovery after Achilles tendon surgery to be successful, do not perform exercises that create movement compensations.

What Is the Cost of Achilles Tendon Surgery?

Achilles tendon surgery cost ranges between $10,000 to $30,000. The price depends on the severity of trauma. All the prices are subject to change. To get information about current prices, you can always contact our office. If a surgical intervention was necessary, then insurance will probably cover most of your expenses. Your best bet would be to contact your insurance provider and determine whether your plan covers this procedure.

How Long Does Achilles Tendon Repair Surgery Take?

An average Achilles tendon surgery time ranges from 30 minutes to an hour. A surgeon makes an incision and stitches the clamps together. Then, a cast is applied, which keeps the leg fixed. Achilles tendon repair surgery may involve either several small incisions or one larger one. You may go home the same day after treatment.

Improve your odds of success. Contact Premier Podiatry at the first signs of a torn Achilles tendon. With proper guidance, you may avoid surgery. But if you do need it, the New Jersey team in Clifton or Wayne is qualified to take care of your Achilles tendon surgery and your recovery.

Page Updated on Apr 8, 2022 by Velimir Petkov, DPM (Podiatrist) of Premier Podiatry

Premier Podiatry: Velimir Petkov, DPM
925 Clifton Ave, Ste 107
Clifton, NJ 07013
(973) 315-5555

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