What happens if you don’t fix a cut tendon?

Answered by Antonio Sutton

If a cut tendon is left untreated, it can lead to a range of complications and long-term consequences. Tendons are tough bands of tissue that connect muscles to bones, and they play a crucial role in the movement and stability of our joints. When a tendon is cut, it disrupts this connection and can significantly impact our ability to move and function properly.

One of the main concerns with an untreated cut tendon is the risk of the injury progressing and worsening over time. Initially, a partial tendon tear may cause pain, swelling, and limited range of motion in the affected joint. However, without proper treatment, such as surgery or immobilization, the tendon may continue to weaken and eventually rupture completely.

When a tendon rupture occurs, it means that there is no longer any connection between the muscle and the bone it is meant to move. This can have severe consequences depending on the location of the injury. Two common examples are Achilles tendon ruptures and ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) ruptures.

Achilles tendon ruptures typically occur near the heel and can be extremely disabling. Without a functioning Achilles tendon, it becomes difficult or impossible to put weight on the affected leg, bend or straighten the ankle, stand on tiptoe, or walk with a normal heel-to-toe stride. Activities that require explosive movements, such as running or jumping, become nearly impossible without a properly functioning Achilles tendon.

ACL ruptures, on the other hand, affect the knee joint. The ACL is a major stabilizing ligament that prevents excessive forward movement of the shin bone in relation to the thigh bone. When the ACL is ruptured, it can result in instability and a feeling of the knee giving way. This can make activities that involve pivoting, twisting, or changing direction, such as playing sports or even walking on uneven surfaces, challenging and potentially painful.

Without intervention, these injuries can have a significant impact on an individual’s quality of life and ability to engage in physical activities. Everyday tasks like walking, climbing stairs, or even standing for long periods can become difficult or painful. The lack of proper treatment can also lead to secondary complications, such as muscle weakness, imbalance, and joint degeneration.

It is important to seek medical attention and appropriate treatment for a cut tendon as soon as possible. Early intervention can help prevent further damage, promote proper healing, and restore function to the affected joint. This may involve surgical repair, immobilization with a cast or brace, physical therapy, and rehabilitation exercises.

If a cut tendon is left untreated, it can progress to a full rupture, resulting in a complete loss of connection between muscles and bones. This can severely impact mobility, stability, and overall function of the affected joint. Seeking prompt medical attention and appropriate treatment is crucial to prevent long-term complications and enable proper healing and rehabilitation.