4th Achilles Rupture Surgery a charm!! Please help

by Andrea
(Long Island NY)

I have ruptured my Achilles’ tendon 3 times have had surgery three times. 2001, 2011, 2012 same tendon. The third time I had it reconstructed. Was wrapped in pig skin covered in a sleeve and had PRP. Over the last two years the pain in the back of my calf has become excruciating.

Feels like someone is stabbing me with a knife. It’s random it comes and goes!

It has really slowed me down and I finally went to the doctor in august. Was told I need an Achilles’ tendon transfer. I said no. He wanted to try me in a cast instead went into a boot. I wore the boot for 7 weeks came out and two days later was back in the boot pain was so bad.

Then went into a cast non weight bearing for 6 weeks, cake out and back into the boot with physical therapy. Total time 24 weeks to avoid surgery. So now I’ve been out of the boot three weeks and every time I’m on my feet to long the throbbing pain is crazy. So I’ve limited my walking and moving.

I’ve decided to do it. Scheduled for 2/8/18. It’s a long ass recovery. My problem is the pain seems to be subsiding I’m not really moving around as much and my husband keeps telling me I have to do it or I will be sitting on the side lines for the rest of my life.

I’m 48 heavyset can’t exercise like I used to. Mind you every time I ruptured it I was working out. I just don’t know what to do! HELP!!’ Any advise ... should I replace the entire tendon and go under he knife even thought today it’s not killing me!!!
Please anyone that can help I would greatly appreciate it any advise!!!


Joshua Comments:

Hi Andrea.

Three ruptures on the same side. Ouch.

If an achilles tendon ruptures, it's one of the few times I give a 100% thumbs up to surgery.

The only problem with that necessary procedure (reconnecting completely torn tendon structure) is that the causes of the tear go 100% ignored (and generally made worse).

So you get reconnected, great, but then you re-rupture.


A little bit it's because strucutrally the tendon is now weaker post-rupture-and-repair.

Mostly it is because of the tendonitis dynamic: too tight muscle and connective tissue, chronic inflammation process, lack of nutrition.

This dynamic results in decreased function. Muscle is supposed to absorb force. To the extent that it can't, it doesn't, and that force has to go somewhere...like that spot where the ruptures happen.

All Tendonitis, no matter where it shows up, shares the same dynamic.

See: What Is Tendonitis?

Achilles tendon pain, insertional 'syndrome', achilles rupture, it's all a predictable/expected outcome of Achilles Tendonitis.

The super
simple version is: things start working less well, and pain and problem starts showing up.

It's not a mystery (well, it shouldn't be).

"Why Does My Achilles Tendon Keep Rupturing?"

Great question. Important question.

Unfortunately, your doctor's answers will be, at best, because 'your tendon isn't strong anymore'.

That's somewhat true, but ask them what causes the rupturing? They'll tell you it's because of your sport, or your job, or because you're aging and your tendons have gotten weaker.

What they should say is "Your muscles are unable to function properly because of the overall poor ecology of your lower leg(s), and so as you stand/walk/jump/etc force is not being absorbed and that force has to go somewhere....looks like it's going to that rupture spot."

If they told you that, and then said "But we're going to ignore all that entirely, reconnect the tendon, and then send you on your way," would you be ok with that?

I really doubt it.

Again unfortunately, they don't know the cause, don't care to investigate the cause, and just do what they do, which is surgery and send you on your way.

If/when this next one ruptures, they'll shrug and do another surgery until the tendon is so bad/destroyed then can't reconnect it any more, and then they will essentially blame you. "Your tendon is gone, sorry there's nothign else we can do for you."

Little bit of a rant there, maybe.


You have extreme pain right now. Why?

- TONS of pain enhancing chemical stuffed into your lower leg.

- Muscle and connective tissue is essentially cramping. This is pulling HARD on your tendon, even when you're sleeping...which irritates/hurts the tendon even more.

- You're short on various nutrition necessary for the muscles to relax.

- They can't relax because lack of nutrition, connective tissue is shrunk wrapped down tight and the muscle can't expand/relax, and the brain is keeping things tight to 'guard and protect' (which is a terrible strategy but that's what it does).

I don't know if you need surgery or not. What does an MRI show?

Answer that and I will respond further.

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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