Jan 29 2012

Showing off my 23cm (9 Inch) Scar

Published by joelh1978 at 14:32 under Re-rupture

It’s been just over 6 months since my Achilles tendon reconstruction surgery after re-rupturing it. Progress is slow but at least it’s heading in the right direction. The girls seem to love the 23cm scar and lump that is my new thick tendon so I can’t complain too much :-). It’s much easier to walk now, although inclines and uneven surfaces are still a little awkward. I’ve added weighted squats and lunges to my routine and can almost do a one legged heal raises (on the bad leg) without using a bench for assistance.

Just the other week my physio got me to do some dynamic motion for the first time. Lying down flat on a spring-loaded bench on rails I did some horizontal "jumps". It was more of a confidence exercise since the springs were only lightly loaded but it did the job.

I’m slowly working towards a return to my road bike. It’s bit of a scary thought given that getting on my bike 11 weeks after my first surgery (as directed by a different Physio) was how I re-ruptured it in the first place. This time though, my Physio and I are making certain I’ll be strong enough when it comes time to get back on the bike.I’m thinking it’ll be about 1 - 2 months from now but there’s no rush.

As for the long term goals, well, I have days where I feel a return to hockey is a real possibility and other days where I’m unsure if I’ll ever be able to run at anything more than a jog but I try not let those days get to me too much. I just put my head down and focus on my exercises.

4 Responses to “Showing off my 23cm (9 Inch) Scar”

  1. rosethornon 31 Jan 2012 at 04:41


    My boyfriend is really stoked on my scar too, which is as big as yours! I can hardly believe that you reruptured your tendon on a bike as I was able to bike a couple times between my first and second ruptures, as well as between my second and third, and found it to be amazingly therapeutic.

    I’m also shocked that you reruptured after surgery! That makes you part of a small demographic, especially in comparison to those who reruptured after non-op treatment, like myself.

    It sounds like you’re working on a Stott Pilates machine which I have used at my PT office in past rehabilitation. It was one of the most beneficial applications for building strength back in my leg. There are so many exercises you can do on those machines (especially since they’re technically NWB) so make sure you’re getting a well-rounded workout when you’re on it.

    I’m stuck on crutches for another month but this past Friday my doctor actually used the word “bombproof,” so I guess I can take solace in that! I hope everything goes well for you and good luck with the bike. I miss it so much….

  2. Chris Son 31 Jan 2012 at 11:00

    rose, I couldn’t believe what I was reading; you had One rupture and two rerups. I am non op like yourself on your first ATR. I searched your blog but could not find how about your first rerup. From what I read non ops have higher chance of a rerup.

    Chris s

  3. joelh1978on 04 Feb 2012 at 12:17


    It wasn’t the peddling motion that did it, it was just trying to get on. I naturally push off with my bad leg to get on and I did the same this time. I initially pushed off tentatively but didn’t have enough momentum and almost lost balance. When I tried again I pushed off a little harder and that’s when it went.

    My physio blamed the type of surgery I had. It was percutaneous surgery which uses a number of small incisions on both sides of the lower leg rather than one big one. I think the technique has been around for a while but it still seems to have mixed reviews from surgeons. I also partly blame my physio for letting me back on my road bike just 11 weeks after surgery. For the second surgery my surgeon wrapped it up so tight I doubt it will break again but it’s also greatly reduced my flexibility. Also because it’s so tight it’s still a bit stiff a sore even 6 months on.

    Did you have 3 ruptures on the one leg? That sounds terrible. Good luck with your recovery this time. I hope it works out well. I’m sure you’ll get back to riding some time in the not too distant future :-)

  4. normofthenorthon 07 Feb 2012 at 03:37

    The new (>2007) stats on post-op vs non-op re-rupture rates — using modern fast protocols, not your grandfather’s “conservative casting” — show comparable and low rates for both. Relatively large samples (like UWO’s 150 patients) show no statistically significant difference, though the raw data still usu gives an edge to the surgical side (usu balanced by infected wounds, rejected sutures, DVT, &c.).

    But both rerupture groups are a “small demographic”. The only large demographic is the reruptures from conservative casting, which can reach 15 or 20%! Don’t let your Doc DO that to YOU — but also don’t reject a good fast modern effective non-op cure, just because the old slow one is dumb!

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