Posted by: annieh | September 2, 2009

After 16 months it looks like I’m a mystery..!!!

Well 16 months on from my achilles surgery problems still exist.  

I went with my hubby to see my surgeon this morning, he did the Thompson test again and said it was OK  and the achilles felt strong and in place, despite failing the test at my physiotherapists and NHS walk in centre, but he was at a loss as to why I had no strength in my leg, the calf muscle was quite obviously very weak, and when he asked me to go on my toes I couldn’t nor could I push his hand with my bad leg.  He is arranging for me to have a scan.  In his opinion the achilles is OK but he wants to confirm this.

We will have to see what happens after he gets the scan results, which could be about 2 weeks, there is a new scanner in my area which he wants me to use, but there is a waiting list, he said it is a much newer and better machine than the one I used last time.

 

If that does not show any obvious problems he will then refer me to a spinal doctor in case it is some sort of nerve problem that is affecting the calf.  My husband asked all the questions TomTom suggested I ask, but it was a case of lets see what the scan says.

 

So no news as yet.  I have to admit to being a little disappointed that I didn’t get a positive answer.

 

Responses

Hmm, strange to send you straight for a scan instead of referring you to a neurologist.
Out of interest, what sort of scanner, MRI, CT, PET or PET/CT? And is the scan to check if your achilles is intact or is he investigating for a possible neurological defect?
Hope you get some good news soon.
Dylan

Annie,
So sorry you didn’t get a definite answer today. Like Dylan I wonder what the surgeon’ll be looking for in the scan if he thinks the achilles is ok.
Your patience is certainly being tested to the full! Hope you get some answers very soon.
Sam

Hi Dylan and Sam,

It is an MRI scan, he seems convinced everything is still attached OK, but depending on the results of the MRI scan will determine whether I then have neurological investigations.

Annie

Annie - Sorry to hear that you are still searching for answers. Your symptoms present almost exactly like mine prior to my second surgery. I may have had a little more strength, but basically the same issues you are having. My surgeon also had me in for an MRI scan, but he was already pretty certain I was suffering from a tendon elongation issue. He ordered the MRI to clarify there weren’t any other issues with the tendon that would have complicated a second surgery. I don’t believe the MRI would actually confirm an elongation unless you could compare it with a scan of the uneffected leg.

Just so you know, my Achilles was fully intact, strong, and healthy. It was presumably just too long. This was confirmed through my lack of strength during test similar to those performed by your surgeon. Did the issue of elongation come up at all during your visit with the surgeon. I’m just curious if he ruled this out for any reason.

It sounds like you have a good relationship with your surgeon, but it may be worth it to set up an appointment with another ortho doctor/specialist. A fresh set of eyes on the situation could shed new light. Hopefully you’ll find some answers soon.

Thanks Annie and Tom for explaining what they may be looking for.
As Tom suggests, if you don’t get the answers you need after this consult, it may be worth going back to your GP and getting a referral elsewhere; while the NHS doesn’t let you choose your specific doctor, you can choose what hospital you go to.
Dylan

Annie, I’ve been following you since the beginning. You have really had a hard time of it, and I hope you can get to the bottom of it.

I was feeling pretty confident about my 15-month post-op recovery, until last month BOTH TENDONS started intermittently aching. Mind you, not great pain, but enough to give alarm, that another rupture is imminent. How did both get in this condition, when there was no pain before the rupture? I am trying to figure out if perhpas there was always something wrong with both, but now they’re progressing somehow TOGETHER downhill. My normal GP recommended stretching, icing, and strengthening exercises, did not seem alarmed at all.

When it sets in out of the blue one year AFTER a rupture, I think it is alarming.

But then I read here about others and I relax a bit. Not totally!

Thanks frwhiskey,

Could do with a ‘whiskey’, (if only I liked the stuff) cannot decide what to do next. I will have to have the scan first, but I am inclined to believe what my physio says. The surgeon was too quick to say the achilles was perfect and it must be another problem e.g. prolapsed disc or similar, I am sure if I had a back problem I would know about it, whilst the physio’s (2 different ones) both said there was a definite problem, so who knows.

Have you been back to see a physio to see what they think? I hope it is nothing serious.

Annie

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