Due to hurricane damage, the Havelock location is closed until further notice. Havelock therapists Hannah Zhang, Sarah Hall and Judy Hickes are available to see patients at the New Bern location. Please call the New Bern location at (252) 636-9800 to discuss your care.

Why is a torn Achilles’ recovery time so long?

Torn Achilles Recovery Time

It’s not always easy to answer this question. Every person experiences a torn Achilles tendon differently, so their recovery time is likely to be different from someone else with the same injury. 

However, the recovery time for this injury can be up to a year for some patients. There are several general reasons that a torn Achilles, or calcaneal tendon, can take so long to recover. A physical therapist can help you learn some reasons for the extensive recovery period. These specialists can help you find effective treatment designed to reduce your torn Achilles’ recovery time, too. 

Two reasons the recovery time is so long for a torn Achilles tendon

The calcaneal tendon has an important job in your leg: to attach the calf muscles to your heel bone. The importance of this tendon often means patients want to recover as quickly as possible. However, there are two reasons that your recovery is likely to take a while. 

  1. Minimal blood supply in the Achilles tendon — Blood is the delivery vehicle for oxygen and nutrients. Both of these are necessary to your body’s natural healing processes. 

The Achilles tendon is at a disadvantage when injured because it has a minimal blood supply. This reduces that amount of oxygen and nutrients that can get to the injury. In turn, your injured tendon will take longer to heal than structures with a better blood supply. 

  1. Tendon size — The job of reining in your calf muscles requires that your calcaneal tendon be robust. In fact, the Achilles is the largest tendon in the body. On average, this tendon is 150 millimeters (about 6 inches) long. It’s also about 6.3 millimeters (about ¼ inch) thick in most 18- to 30-year-olds. The size of this tendon means tears are bigger than in other tendons, and bigger tears require more healing time. 

How can your physical therapist help decrease your torn Achilles’ recovery time?

There are many benefits that physical therapy can offer for this injury. One of the most important is shortening your torn Achilles’ recovery time. In fact, it’s reported that physical therapy for this injury can allow patients to return to normal activities in four to six months. 

Some therapy methods your physical therapist may use to treat your torn Achilles include: 

Find effective care for your torn Achilles tendon at Peak Performance

Wondering where to turn for physical therapy that can reduce your torn Achilles’ recovery time? Our physical therapists at Peak Performance provide therapeutic care that can offer this benefit. We’ll do a free screening on your leg to determine the severity of your injury and symptoms. Then, our specialists will create a personalized therapy plan designed to reduce pain and improve healing speed. 

Having trouble getting out of the house because of your injury? You can still get the top-notch physical therapy you need! Our team offers virtual therapy that allows you to work with us from your home. 

Contact us today for more information about how we can treat your Achilles tendon injury or to schedule an initial appointment.