Update on previous post-Second Achilles Tendon Tear Repair Surgery within 6 months

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Hi all, I'm sorry I haven't wrote sooner but wanted to give an update on things with me. When I first posted here about 11 days ago, you welcomed me into your forum greatly and I thank you for that. Just in case about me, on 12/22 I had my second Achilles' tendon tear repair surgery, with the first one being 6/30. The first time my surgeon went in small and in time either I developed a new tear or we never got the first one completely. My surgeon did not want to do a second surgery but I tried all the things he wanted to do first, prolo shots, meds, brace, cast, neurologist for EMG 30 test, etc. I've been in a boot for over 8 months now and developed severe back and neck problems. I go to physical therapy 3 times a week since the first surgery but was just able to restart 3 weeks ago since I have been at home NWB. In this time I have lost now 42 pounds since June and trying to take care of myself better. We started PT slow, only twice the first week. It's hard having to start from the beginning all over again and that's been especially hard for me. I saw my spine specialist because my back and neck started back up again and I told her that my surgeon said he believes my ankle will heal ASAP and if it doesn't it is my backs fault. She as I and my therapists have felt this is not true, if anything being in this boot, crutches and cane have caused the pain I now have. We work on this too in PT. But as I have learned from my therapists that and I am trying to word this right. No doctor likes to have to go in and fix something a second time. I don't talk to my surgeon about my back and neck because I had that in my head since the second surgery that it was being blamed on my ankle. That affected me since surgery with worrying greatly about this but all the scans, MRI's, tests back this up. My spine specialist said we can't do shots in my neck and back because they could affect the healing of the Achilles.

I was trying to go back to work 2/1 but then it was pushed to 2/8. However, yesterday I wasn't feeling good with my ankle and it became swollen and bruised. I felt more pain in it then usual and started worrying about work. So after talking to my physical therapists I called my doctor and asked to extend my leave till next Wed. On Friday I was able to put on a sneaker and ride the bike only for 4 minutes and walk back to the chair with my crutches. I was scared and in some pain but my therapist was proud of me. All I saw was that I only lasted 4 minutes because my back started hurting. I couldn't see the good in this.

I guess what I am trying to say is that I am scared of going backwards again. Once we transitioned to the sneaker last time that is when I started having severe pain and that is when we found out that I had the new tear. I think I have overly stressed myself out about things because of how things have happened and trying to make myself feel better than I actually do. All my doctor sees is how good it looks on the outside but no one knows the pain I feel. My therapists have been next to me from the beginning of this "roller coaster" as they call it and I know they won't let me fall. They know my fears about leaving the boot but I know I can't live in this thing. They feel once I get stronger and get out of the boot my back and neck will start to feel better. I have even lost muscle in my calf from all of this. I know I'm not technically alone in this but I don't know how to not be afraid. I fought for this second surgery because I couldn't live with the pain and trying to wait to see if this tear could repair itself. I felt it could not, just like my therapists felt but I tried the non-invasive approach as my surgeon wanted but then I was happy he agreed to do the open repair.

I'm sorry to write so much when I know so many of you have your own stories, it's just been amazing to know there are others out there with somewhat similar stories to mine. Thank you for listening and being there for me.

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  • Posted

    Sunshine,

    Sounds like you are so much more fit this time. I know about the loss of muscle tone and strength in the calf (and also the small muscles in the foot) from being immobilized so long. I am suffereing from the same thing--does not cause pain, especially, but I can sense the weakness (and my lower legs don't match!). Can't quite do single leg heel raises.

    When I first went in for surgery in August, I thought it would be no big deal--less than an hour under anesthesia, go home the same night. But now, I agree; facing this surgery again would be quite daunting. I don't know exactly what you are going through, but this achilles injury is much more severe than most people realize. It is even immortalzed in Greek mythology. People talk about someones achilles heel meaning their singular vulnerability, but not their pattellar tendon!

    Write as much as you care to, Sunshine. If you do the surgery, I wish you all the very best for a postive outcome and successful resolution of your achilles injury.

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    • Posted

      Hi Rob,

      That is so true, I forgot about that saying about the Achilles' tendon! smile I have to look up about the pattellar tendon though, interesting!

      Actually sorry I know I wrote so much but I did have the second surgery on 12/22. Just never realized how I would be feeling after the second surgery and the fears it has given me.

      Thank you so much for listening. smile

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    • Posted

      I feel for you. I'm 7 months in and I can't imagine going through this again. I still have pain when I'm on it for too long and believe or not driving long distances really hurt.

      I wish you well.

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much, I am sorry I didn't write sooner, been going through an awful depression with this second surgery and it isn't even three months in yet. Thank you for listening. smile

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