My Latest Date With The Doc

I met again with the surgeon on Tuesday.  We reviewed the results of the MRI and had a good discussion regarding the pros and cons of a surgical procedure to shorten my elongated Achilles tendon.  The MRI didn’t show much other than a very thick tendon.  That wasn’t a surprise as that is clear to the naked eye.  The doc did point out two small spots along the tendon which he thought were pockets of fluid, but he didn’t seem overly concerned.  Otherwise, the tendon looked healthy, which I’m assuming is a good sign in the grand scheme of things.

I was able to get all my questions answered and I appreciated the surgeon’s time and frankness.  Although it’s somewhat difficult to accept, I’m pretty certain a second surgery is my only option for regaining anymore strength in my calf.

There are two mental challenges for me with this surgery.  The first is that I feel I’ve seen the slightest bit of improvement over the last few months.  It seems like a little more strength has returned to the calf.  But, relatively speaking, the calf is no where near where it should be, now over 18 months since the original surgery.

The second challenge is the thought of walking into the hospital knowing that I’ll be leaving on crutches.  Seems so cruel.  But, I remind myself that the short term agony of a cast and crutches will be worth the ability to regain more calf strength and feel a little bit closer to normal.

My surgery is scheduled for Wednesday.  Hopefully all goes well.

7 Responses to “My Latest Date With The Doc”

  1. Tom,

    What is the recovery like with this shortening surgery? I presume PT will be in order but you’re not starting out as if it was just put back together, right?

    Tamar

  2. I’ll be thinking about you on Wednesday Tom.

    What questions did you ask your surgeon, it might help me to ask my surgeon the right things when I get round to seeing him. Will the same surgeon be operating or have you chosen someone else?

  3. Tom,
    I agree that this is the right way to go. I wish you the best on Wednesday.

  4. Tom: Will be thinking about you on Wednesday. Did your doc explain what the procedure is like? I have never heard how they make the Achilles shorter. Happy healing!

  5. Trisport - The recovery will be very similar to my original surgery. 6 weeks in splint/cast (changed every two weeks)while NWB to PWB and then 4-6 weeks in walking boot while FWB. PT will begin at 6 weeks but will be very conservative to begin with.

    Smish - The surgeon will clean up some of the scar tissue along the tendon. Then I believe he will basically cut out a section of the tendon to shorten the length. He may augment with an FHL transfer depending on how the tendon looks while he’s able to see it. With the tendon appearing healthy in the MRI, the transfer may not be necessary. But, the surgeon said he would be pretty liberal. If he had any concerns about the tendon he would augment with the FHL.

    Annie - I sent a private email to address your question. I hope that is okay. I was concerned my answer would get a bit lengthy for the blog. Let me know if you don’t get the message.

  6. Tom, best wishes to you. I’m in the same boat but have decided to stick it out a bit longer. We all feel your pain of going back under the knife. I’d be really interested in the note you sent Annie. Any chance you can forward me a copy? I’ll keep my eyes peeled for updates.

    Jim

  7. Jim - I sent you an email with the questions I passed along to Annie. Let me know if you don’t receive it. Also, feel free to ask any questions as you weigh your options. I’ll try my best to answer and I’ll keep the blog updated with my progress. Hopefully it will be PROGRESS!

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