Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging Analysis of the Common Site of Acute Achilles Tendon Rupture: 5 to 8 cm Above the Distal End of the Calcaneal Insertion

Young Hwan Park, Jung Wook Lim, Gi Won Choi, Hak Jun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Previous studies have not quantitatively analyzed the site of acute Achilles tendon rupture. Purpose: To investigate the site of acute Achilles tendon rupture via magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Study Design: Cross-sectional study; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: The medical records and MRIs of 195 patients with acute Achilles tendon rupture were retrospectively reviewed. The rupture site was measured as the distance from the most distal fibers of the Achilles tendon at the calcaneal insertion to the proximal end of the distal stump. The relationship between the site of rupture and patient characteristics was analyzed, and the intra- and interobserver reliability of the measurements was assessed using intraclass correlation coefficients. Results: The rupture site had a mean distance of 6.4 cm (SD, 1.5) and the 10th to 90th percentile range was 5.0 to 8.4 cm. There was no significant difference in location of the rupture according to patient characteristics and the time of imaging. The intra- and interobserver reliability of measurements was excellent. Conclusion: Most acute Achilles tendon ruptures visible on MRI occurred 5 to 8 cm above the distal end of the calcaneal insertion, which is more proximal than the previously reported 2 to 6 cm location.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Sports Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan 1



  • Achilles tendon
  • calcaneus
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • tendon injuries

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation

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