1 week post-op Achilles Tendon Tear repair, pain increasing

by Patrice

I am Patrice, a healthy and active 40 year old. I tore my achilles tendon at work on 12/12/10. I had surgery to repair the tendon on 1/19/11. The surgery was performed under general anesthesia, and surgeon described outcome of surgery as "excellent."

I went home the same day as surgery, and experienced little pain until the next day. That pain was just what I had expected- soreness around calf and ankle, and a pressure like pain when injured foot was not elevated. Spent next week on couch, only getting up to answer the call of nature. Stopped taking pain meds (norco) after 4th day.

Over the last 2 nights, I've been experiencing a different and more uncomfortable kind of pain.

The pain is in my heel, and is best described as an intense burning. It seems to intensify in the evenings and pain medications do nothing to alleviate it. I keep the injured foot elevated while in bed, so there is no difference in positioning.

I wake up at least 4 times a night as a result of the intense pain, and have to just wait until it eventually lessens enough for me to go back to sleep. Each episode lasts from 10 to 20 minutes, and the pain is simply remarkable.

The doctor said pain is to be expected, and offered a different kind of medication, but the level and reoccurance of the pain is surprising to me. I am just curious if anyone else who has had this surgery has had a similar experience and can sympathise or offer a solution. thank you


Joshua Answers:

Hi Patrice.

Part of the Tendonitis dynamic is long term muscle and connective tissue tightness.

Specific to Achilles Tendonitis, the calf muscles and the Soleus muscle underneath, and the connective tissue tightly wrapping it all, pull on the Achilles tendon.

Your muscle(s) could no longer absorb the force of the load, and the tendon gave way (which effectively created more length.

You had surgery which (assumably) pulled that tear back together. This effectively got rid of the new length.

So surgery reconnected the tendon itself.

But in no way shape or form does it reverse the Pain Causing Dynamic that has been feeding on itself to create more and more tightness.

So forces are still pulling. Even more so after the insult of surgery.

The Achilles tendon attaches to your heel, basically. It makes sense that that heel connection is now getting pulled on more than usual. This irritates the tissue. Thus pain.

Two thoughts, other than getting my Reversing Achilles Tendonitis ebook, is:

Magnesium for Tendonitis

and Self massage. Just get in there and start squeezing gently. Squeeze harder/deeper only if it doesn't hurt, but over time work your way down, lengthening too tight tissue, and creating circulation (old stuff out, new stuff in).

More questions, more answers.

Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.

And, comments have a 3,000 character limit so you may have to comment twice.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Comments for 1 week post-op Achilles Tendon Tear repair, pain increasing

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Mar 23, 2014
Burning sensation from Achilles surgery
by: Anonymous

My husband is 4 days post surgery and also having same intense burning sensation that worsens at night. Pain meds do not help the burning.

Does he need to be on a different type of medication ?


Joshua Comments:

Hi Anonymous.

I don't know if he needs meds or not. You'll have to hope your doctor has something to offer there.

Surgery cuts into flesh and causes injury (which causes a lot of inflammation side effects, etc). There's going to be pain, etc. If any little nerve was bruised/damaged/cut, there will be issue from that too.

Aug 15, 2011
Post Achilles Tendon surgery question
by: James Guy

Hi. I injured my Achilles tendon about 3 months ago playing basketball. It started as a high grade tear and started to scar but last Sunday it popped and I had to have surgery. So on 8/8/2011, my surgeon repaired it and gave me meds and im in a splint. Now the last couple of days, my calf muscle has a pain similar to like a Charlie horse pain. When my leg is elevated it doesn't hurt but when I get up, and of course im using crutches, it hurts.

My surgeon's nurse said its normal. What is wrong?? Can anyone help?? Thanks


Joshua Comments:

Hi James.

Unfortunately, it is common.

Your tendon ruptured. You had surgery to reconnect it, which effectively shortens the structure. Plus all the trauma of surgery (cutting, torn flesh, punctures and cuts etc.

So now when you're upright, even the pressure of blood and gravity is going to cause it to hurt. You have a crazy unhappy Process of Inflammation.

And if you put any weight on it (I assume you're in a cast) the tension on all that unhappy tissue makes it hurt.

The charlie horse is likely from your traumatized muscles now being pulled apart 24/7 from the new tension of a shorter structure.

I highly suggest you get an ARPwave unit (see The ARPwave System). Not only for the fast pain relief results (neurologically setting short muscles to length) but for the 4-8 week full recovery it can help provide.

Magnesium for Tendonitis would also be highly suggested.

More questions, more answers.

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