Well as the title says, it is 18 months since my surgery and I have just managed my first single calf raise!!
The main reason for this post is to warn others not to do as I did and accept what I was told by so called specialists i.e.
My surgeon told me in November that muscle wastage was not due to the Achilles but due to damage to my S1 Nerve (prolapsed disc). I disagreed, but he suggested I see a back surgeon with the view to back surgery, which was rarely successful; all this was very depressing after such a long time.
What I did:
I decided to seek another physiotherapist. This time I went to a specialist sports injury clinic.
What they found:
The muscles in my lower leg were non-existent, the thigh muscles were weak and the muscles in my buttock was also weak, all this explained why I was finding it so difficult to walk any distance, walking with a pronounced limp and difficulty going up and down stairs and not being able to push off with my Achilles leg. Instead of improving I was actually getting worse. The main cause of the problem was scar tissue, obvious really, but when I asked my surgeon if that could be the cause he said ‘NO’.
I have been attending my new clinic twice a week for 3 weeks, having extremely painful deep massage (and if it wasn’t for the fact that they are so chatty and tell such funny stories I’m sure I would cry with the pain), continual assessment, and serious exercises. Yesterday I actually managed to do 5 single calf raises by placing the palms of my hands on the palms of my physio’s hands. Not right up on my toes but enough to make me realise that I can do this over a period of time. Maybe it doesn’t sound much but to me it was a dramatic improvement, three weeks ago we tried this and my leg stayed firmly planted on the floor. As I progress I will receive help with re-training my walking as I have damaged my hips and knees because I could only ‘swing’ my leg to walk.
It is early days still but I am so much more confident in walking already, it is still very painful but I will get there, I have to prove my surgeon wrong and walk into his office one day and show him how wrong he was, that will give me the greatest pleasure.
Sorry this is so long winded but it helps, my advice to all of you now is to make sure that you get the right treatment, don’t wait as long as I did before getting a second opinion (I only did this because TomTom and Smish insisted I did, so special thanks to them).
My extra-special thanks go to my new physiotherapists and I wish them and everyone else a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year.