CausesBy Mayo Clinic staff
Your Achilles tendon helps you point your foot downward, rise on your toes and push off your foot as you walk. You rely on it virtually every time you move your foot.
Rupture usually occurs in the section of the tendon located within 2.5 inches (6 centimeters) of the point where it attaches to the heel bone. This section may be predisposed to rupture because it gets less blood flow, which may impair its ability to heal.
Ruptures often are caused by a sudden increase in the amount of stress on your Achilles tendon. Common examples include:
- Increasing the intensity of sports participation
- Falling from a height
- Stepping into a hole
- Baer GS, et al. Achilles tendon rupture. In: DeLee JC, et al. DeLee & Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine: Principles and Practice. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-3143-7..X0001-2--TOP&isbn=978-1-4160-3143-7&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Ham P, et al. Achilles tendinopathy and tendon rupture. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Khan RJ, et al. Surgical interventions for treating acute Achilles tendon ruptures (review). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2010:CD003674.
- Mercier LR. Achilles tendon rupture. In: Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2011: Instant Diagnosis and Treatment. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05610-6..C2009-0-38600-6--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05610-6&about=true&uniqId=230100505-53. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Carr JB. Achilles tendon rupture. In: Browner BD, et al. Skeletal Trauma. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: W.B. Saunders Co.; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/page.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-2220-6..10060-X--s0630&isbn=978-1-4160-2220-6&sid=1182706148&uniqId=268192316-4#4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-2220-6..10060-X--s0630. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 26, 2011.