The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body. It must withstand great forces, especially during sporting exercises and pivoting. Pathology of the Achilles tendon is not well understood. Treatments can vary widely and are occasionally controversial, especially in relation to tendon rupture. Choices include a conservative approach versus open, mini-open, or percutaneous repair.
This article highlights some of the basic aspects of tendon pathology, especially in regard to tendinosis and tendon failure. Part of the problem in defining Achilles tendon pathology is the confusing nomenclature, with authors using different words to describe the same pathology or using the same words to describe different aspects of the problem. The terms peritenonitis, peritendinitis, tendinitis, tendinosis, and tendinopathy are all interlinked in the literature.
Synonyms and related keywords: Achilles' tendon, Achilles tendinosis, peritenonitis, peritendinitis, tendinitis, tendinosis, tendinopathy, paratendinopathy, pantendinopathy, intratendinous inflammation, paratenon inflammation
Hargrove, McLean & Behn 2005 Updated 2009