Overactivity or shortness (contracture) of these tendons can cause the foot to bear weight abnormally. That can cause inward rotation (intoeing) or high arch (cavus). Surgery balances the muscles that control motion in the back and middle of the foot (subtalar joint complex).
Lengthening can be done either by dividing the tendon within the muscle belly (intramuscularly) or by a step-cut within the tendon (Z-lengthening) to achieve extra length. A complete transfer involves dividing the attachment of the tendon in the foot, moving the tendon to a new bone and resecuring it with a suture or bone anchor. Split transfers are more common than complete transfers. For a split transfer, only one half of the tendon is removed from its attachment to the bone, the tendon is split upwards above the ankle, and the detached half is rerouted to a new position and secured.
This information is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the advice of your health care providers. If you have any questions, talk with your doctor or others on your health care team. If you are a Gillette patient with urgent questions or concerns, please contact Telehealth Nursing at 651-229-3890.