Title

Effect of ankle and knee position on tension in the Achilles tendon

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1-1-1999

Journal

Foot and Ankle International

Volume

20

Issue

2

DOI

10.1177/107110079902000210

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relative contributions of ankle and knee position to tension in the Achilles tendon and to determine whether there exists a position of plantarflexion at which the passive tensioning effect of knee extension is eliminated. Seven matched pairs of fresh-frozen cadaver lower extremities were tested. A buckle transducer was used to measure forces in the tendon throughout the full range of knee motion, with the hindfoot fixed. Positioning the hindfoot in 20°to 25°of plantarflexion effectively eliminates tension in the Achilles tendon, regardless of knee position. This information is directly applicable both to the nonoperative treatment of ruptures of the Achilles tendon employing a short leg cast and to surgical repairs, in which tension must be controlled precisely.

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