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Bone Joint J. 2015 Mar;97-B(3):353-7. doi: 10.1302/0301-620X.97B3.33732.

The management of chronic rupture of the Achilles tendon: minimally invasive peroneus brevis tendon transfer.

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University of Salerno, School of Medicine and Surgery, Salerno, Italy.
University of Rome 'Tor Vergata' School of Medicine, Viale Oxford 81, Rome, Italy.
Campus Biomedico University , Via Alvaro del Portillo, 200, 00128 Trigoria, Rome, Italy.
Campus Biomedico University, Via Alvaro del Portillo, 200, 00128 Trigoria, Rome, Italy.


We hypothesised that a minimally invasive peroneus brevis tendon transfer would be effective for the management of a chronic rupture of the Achilles tendon. In 17 patients (three women, 14 men) who underwent minimally invasive transfer and tenodesis of the peroneus brevis to the calcaneum, at a mean follow-up of 4.6 years (2 to 7) the modified Achilles tendon total rupture score (ATRS) was recorded and the maximum circumference of the calf of the operated and contralateral limbs was measured. The strength of isometric plantar flexion of the gastrocsoleus complex and of eversion of the ankle were measured bilaterally. Functional outcomes were classified according to the four-point Boyden scale. At the latest review, the mean maximum circumference of the calf of the operated limb was not significantly different from the pre-operative mean value, (41.4 cm, 32 to 50 vs 40.6 cm, 33 to 46; p = 0.45), and not significantly less than that of the contralateral limb (43.1 cm, 35 to 52; p = 0.16). The mean peak torque (244.6 N, 125 to 367) and the strength of eversion of the operated ankle (149.1 N, 65 to 240) were significantly lower (p < 0.01) than those of the contralateral limb (mean peak torque 289, 145 to 419; strength of eversion: 175.2, 71 to 280). The mean ATRS significantly improved from 58 pre-operatively (35 to 68) to 91 (75 to 97; 95% confidence interval 85.3 to 93.2) at the time of final review. Of 13 patients who practised sport at the time of injury, ten still undertook recreational activities. This procedure may be safely performed, is minimally invasive, and allows most patients to return to pre-injury sport and daily activities.


Chronic Achilles tendon rupture; peroneus brevis tendon transfer; functional outcomes; return to pre-injury activity

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