Progress Update - Post Op #2

6 Weeks Post Op

I went back to see the doc on Tuesday morning.  Cast #2 was removed and the surgeon reviewed my progress to date.  He seemed to be pleased with the results of the surgery and got me fitted into a walking boot.  I can ditch the crutches and begin full weight bearing as soon as I feel comfortable.

It was interesting to hear the surgeon stress how important the next several weeks will be.  I know this to be the case having gone through the recovery once before, but it was good for me to hear it again.  He commented that while the tendon is ready to bear weight, it is not fully healed at this point.  He also stressed the importance of gradual stretching of the tendon over the next several weeks to avoid unwanted slack.  Another point I was aware of as a lengthened tendon was the reason I needed a second surgery.

I can remove the boot while sitting, sleeping, and showering.  Careful shuffling to the kitchen or bathroom without the boot is permitted (the surgeon brought this up on his own without me asking), but otherwise I need to wear the boot if I’m moving about.  This is the plan for the next 6 weeks.  He wants to be a little cautious knowing this is the second surgery on the tendon.  But, he permitted all activities (biking, elliptical, etc.) as long as I’m in the boot.

The doc also gave me a prescription to start physical therapy.  Unfortunately the clinic must be pretty busy right now  as  I wasn’t able to get an appointment until next Friday.  But, I’ll start some basic range of motion exercises while I wait.

I was planning to spend a day or two transitioning off the crutches, but felt comfortable enough getting around the house this evening without them.  I have a bit of the usual pins & needles feeling in the bottom of the heal and the ankle joint is stiff, but I’ve already noticed improvements over the last 24 hours.  I also hopped on my bike trainer for a short spin the last two nights.  It felt good to get a little more exercise than just leg lifts and sit-ups.

Posted below is a picture of the incision at 6 weeks.  There are a couple of rough spots, but hopefully that will improve quickly now that I’m able to give it a massage. Cheers!


4 Responses to “Progress Update - Post Op #2”

  1. Hi Tom,

    That all sounds pretty good. And that scar is far better than I would have expected. Is the second cut directly over the first one? If so then it is exceptionally good.

    I haven’t had news of when my MRI scan will be yet so no further along the route. I have been looking to find another surgeon for a second opinion but the man I had does seem to be the top man in my area. Once I have the scan and the results I will see what happens then.

    Your good progress would make me think about having a second surgery if that is what is neccessary.


  2. Annie - The new incision is more medial than the incisions from the first surgery. You may be able to see the original incisions in the photo, but they are starting to fade away. The surgeon wanted to avoid the original incisions to maintain better blood flow to the new incision.

    Keep me updated with your plans and let me know if you have any questions.

  3. I am due to have a second surgery to stretch my tendon and remove some of the scar tissue. From the beginning my tendon was very tight and while it has improved is still very stiff. My initial surgery was in Feb. Is the 2nd time around supposed to take less time and is there any advice you can provide on finding a good therapist.

  4. Araaslove - My recovery from the second surgery will be longer than the first, mainly for 2 reasons. First, I will spend a couple extra weeks in a walking boot to minimize the chances of my tendon lengthening too much during the initial healing period. And second, my calf has basically atrophied for over 20 months. So, it will take a long time to rebuild calf strength. My surgeon felt it could take as much as 18 months to know how much strength I’ll be able to gain back after the second surgery. I hopeful it won’t take quite that long.

    As for finding a good therapist, I think the achillesblog network is a good starting point. You can look for another blogger in your area and see if they can provide any recommendations. I would also ask your surgeon if they have a therapist or particular clinic they’ve worked with in the past. Good luck with the second surgery. I hope it all works out for you.

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