Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Foot FAQ

Question:

I work as a certified nursing assistant in an extended care facility. I'm on my feet almost the entire shift. Last week I ruptured my Achilles tendon doing nothing at all. I'm off work now. But I'm wondering how I'm going to manage standing all day when I go back.

Answer:

This may depend on the type of treatment you have and how soon in the recovery process you have to return to work. Most tendon ruptures take a minimum of six weeks to heal enough for the kind of walking and standing your job requires. If surgery is needed, then the process can take longer. Studies in animals and humans have shown us that early tension and load through the Achilles tendon can actually help the healing process. Weight-bearing seems to stimulate increased blood flow to the area. Putting weight on the leg also improves muscle strength as healing takes place. Safety is an important consideration. In your case, both your own personal safety and your patients' safety are factors. You must be far enough along in the rehab and recovery process to be able to function safely in the extended care facility where you are working. It's likely your employer has some basic criteria to guide your return. Following these guidelines will help ensure both your own safety and the safety of the clients under your care. Amar A. Suchak, MD, et al. The Influence of Early Weight-Bearing Compared with Non-Weight-Bearing After Surgical Repair of the Achilles Tendon. In The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. September 2008. Vol. 90. No. 9. Pp. 1876-1883.

*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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