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To evaluate the effect of a double Krackow suture pattern (DK), with and without epitendinous suture augmentation (ES), in a canine gastrocnemius tendon (GT) model.


Paired GTs from 12 adult dog cadavers and 4 control GT.


GTs were assigned to 2 groups (n = 12/group). Transverse tenotomy was performed and repaired with a DK or DK + ES. Yield, peak, and failure force, stiffness, occurrence of 1-and 3-mm gapping, and failure mode were examined.


Yield, peak, and failure loads were greater for DK + ES. Yield force was 48% greater for DK + ES (mean ± SD, 149.56 ± 53.26 N) versus DK (101.27 ± 37.17 N; P = 0.017). Peak force was 45% greater for DK + ES P < 0.001). Failure force was 47% greater for DK + ES (193.752 ± 31.43 N) versus DK (131.54 ± 22.28 N; P < 0.001). Construct stiffness was 36% greater for DK + ES (P = 0.04). All 12 DK and 10 of 12 DK + ES repairs produced a 1-mm gap, with all DK and 4 DK + ES repairs producing a 3-mm gap (P < 0.001). Loads required to create a 3-mm gap were significantly greater for DK + ES (P < 0.013). Suture breakage occurred in all DK repairs, which differed from DK + ES, where suture breakage (7/12) and tissue failure (5/12; P = 0.037) predominated.


Augmentation of a primary DK repair with an ES significantly improved construct strength in canine GT constructs while increasing loads required to cause 1- and 3-mm gap formation, respectively. ES augmentation is a simple technique modification that can be used to significantly increase construct strength, compared with DK alone.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research