Background: Ideal suture technique and type in tendon repair are remain unclear. This biomechanical study aimed to assess the biomechanical characteristics of three techniques, modified Kessler (mKE), modified Krackow (mKR), and modified tension Bunnell (mtBU), in sheep Achilles’ tendon tear repair using three suture types, polypropylene, polyester, and ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) sutures, which are also compared.
Methods: Sixty-three Achilles’ tendons harvested from sheep were transversely hacked as a replacement for rupture in a standardized measure and repaired using mKE, mKR, and mtBU techniques with No. 2 polypropylene, polyester, and UHMWPE sutures. Biomechanical parameters, such as Young’s modulus, ultimate strength, and strength to the 5-mm gap were recorded for statistical analysis.
Results: The mtBU technique with UHMWPE use resulted in increased ultimate strength, strenght to 5-mm gap, Young’s modulus, and quantity of specimens with low clinical failure modes compared to other techniques with other suture materials. Furthermore, mtBU has the lowest thickness at the repair side of the tendons. This approach showed tendon failure during maximal traction testing, whereas the mKE and mKR had polyethylene and polyester suture failures.
Conclusions: The UHMWPE suture was significantly superior to the other sutures in each suture techniques in terms of strength and durability. The mtBU technique using UHMWPE suture showed better biomechanical results, implying that this repair might be more appropriate to obtain early mobilization after tendon ruptures.
Background: Flat feet change lower extremity alignment, and it may change the load distribution on Achilles tendon during exercise. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the immediate effect of cumulative transverse strain via resistive ankle plantarflexion exercise on the Achilles tendon in individuals with flat feet.
Methods: Fourteen individuals with flat feet and 14 age-matched individuals with normal foot posture were enrolled in the present study. Achilles tendon thickness was measured by an ultrasonography device with a linear probe at 3 points: 1 cm (AT-1), 2 cm (AT-2), and 3 cm (AT-3) proximal to the superior aspect of the calcaneus. Ultrasonography measurements were performed before and after participants completed 90 repetitions of double-leg calf raise exercises which included moving the foot from full ankle dorsiflexion to full ankle plantarflexion.
Results: Achilles tendon thickness at all points measured was thinner in the flat feet group at both pre- and post-exercise conditions compared with that of the control group (p<0.05). Achilles tendon thickness at AT-1, AT-2, and AT-3 decreased after the exercise in both groups (p<0.001). The differences in Achilles tendon thickness at all points measured between pre- and post-exercise conditions were lower in individuals with flat feet than those of the control group (p<0.05).
Conclusion: There was a significant decrease in Achilles tendon thickness after exercise in both groups; however, the tendon thickness markedly diminished in individuals with normal foot posture. The results are thought to result from changes in tendon structure and in load distribution on the Achilles tendon.
Background: Many authors have highlighted the role of muscle strength imbalance around the ankle in the development of recurrent clubfoot following Ponseti treatment. Nevertheless, this possible underlying mechanism behind recurrences has not been investigated sufficiently to date. This study aimed to explore whether there is a relationship between Achilles tendon elongation and recurrent metatarsus adductus deformity in children with unilateral clubfeet treated by Ponseti method. Methods: A retrospective chart review was performed on 20 children (14 boys, 6 girls; mean age: 7 years; age range: 5-9) with a recurrent metatarsus adductus deformity treated by the Ponseti method for unilateral idiopathic clubfoot. At the final follow-up, isometric muscle strength was measured using a portable, hand-held dynamometer in reciprocal muscle groups of the ankle. The length of the tendons around the ankle was ultrasonographically measured. Results: The plantar flexion/dorsiflexion ratio was lower on the involved side (p = 0.001). No significant differences in the strength ratio of inversion/eversion were found (p = 0.4). No difference was observed in lengths of tibialis anterior and posterior tendon (p = 0,1), but Achilles tendon was longer on the involved side (p = 0.001; p < 0.01). A significant negative correlation was discovered between involved/uninvolved Achilles tendon length ratios and involved/uninvolved plantar flexion strength ratios (r = −0.524; p = 0.02) Conclusions: Achilles tendon elongation may be a contributor to the muscle imbalance in clubfeet with the relapsed forefoot adduction treated by the Ponseti technique.