I just tore my Achilles tendon playing basketball. My surgeon has suggested non-operative treatment, but I know several people who have had surgery and none who have not. Is this option as successful as my surgeon tells me it is?
There are likely many resources to look into the success of non-operative treatment of Achilles tendon, for this response I will reference an article by Uquillas et al which is an update in current concepts and management of Achilles injuries. In this article the authors suggest that choosing between surgery or not is controversial, with advantages and disadvantages for each. This article references a few studies that have shown no difference in rerepture rate between operative and non-operative treatment. Despite this evidence some people are still choosing to have the operation, and the authors suggest that this may be based on a report that indicated only thirty seven percent of patients undergoing non-operative treatment are able to return to the same level of sport. This is despite the fact that 78 per cent reported no pain, 56 per cent reported no weakness, 55 per cent reported no stiffness and 98 per cent returned to work. Considering that you have injured yourself while playing a sport, your goals for the outcome may be something to consider and discuss further with your physician, if you haven’t already.