Cedars Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital Alert: COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) information for patients and visitors LEARN MORE >>

Does tendon rupture require surgery?

Tendon rupture occurs when the tendon tissue breaks. Tendon rupture is treated differently depending on the site where the problem occurs.

Tendons are tough, fibrous tissues that attach muscles to bones. They allow the body to move, to transfer weight and help protect joints from damage. In some cases, tendons can rupture resulting in pain and permanent disability if untreated. A tendon rupture is a partial or complete tear of the tendon. There are different types of tendon ruptures, each with specific signs and symptoms. Tendon ruptures can be treated either medically or surgically depending on the type of the tendon and the severity of the rupture. Even though most tendon ruptures cannot heal on their own, good function can often be achieved without surgery with steroid injection, using support devices and physical therapy.

Surgery, an efficient option for tendon repair

Tendon repair surgeries are usually straightforward and successful with minor risks. The doctor will ask the patients about their medical history before the procedure and discuss the potential risks and complications. Surgery is the best treatment option if the condition is severe, prior to this option, the patient is required to rest, apply ice and compression. Patients who may need surgery for tendon rupture are those with a complete tear, severe injury from sports, a tear resulted from rheumatoid arthritis.

The goal of tendon repair surgery is:

  • to bring back the function 
  • to bring back the normal range of motion
  • to provide efficient pain relief

Some medical conditions can affect the success of tendon repair surgery, including heart conditions, circulation problems, nerve conditions, diabetes, and obesity. Smoking, drug and alcohol addiction may increase the risk of complications.

Disclaimer: We do not assume responsibility for the use of the provided information or its interpretation. Our efforts are towards providing current and reliable information; however these should not be considered, or used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment.

Source: https://www.cedars-sinai.edu/Education/Medical-Library/