Achilles tendon complex: The anatomy of its insertional footprint on the calcaneus and clinical implications

Jared Mahan, Dhanur Damodar, Evan Trapana, Spencer Barnhill, Ane Ugarte Nuno, Niall A. Smyth, Amiethab Aiyer, J. Jose

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


The Achilles tendon is the largest, and most commonly torn tendon in the body. The Achilles is usually torn at a region of relative hypo-vascularity proximal to its insertion. However, partial thickness tears and other pathologies often occur at its insertion on the calcaneus. Anatomically, the insertion is a confluence of the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles that fuse to form a myotendinous unit on the posterosuperior aspect of the calcaneus. This review aims to reveal the insertional footprint as individual fascicular components attaching to facets of calcaneal tuberosity. Understanding this anatomy is essential for interpreting tear patterns and surgical implications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-227
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Orthopaedics
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020
Externally publishedYes



  • Achilles complex
  • Achilles insertion
  • Achilles rupture
  • Achilles tear
  • Achilles tendon
  • Calcaneal tuberosity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Cite this