An abnormal Achilles tendon heel bump with calcification extending into the actual tendon.

Achilles Insertional Tendinopathy / Enthesopathy

Achilles Speedbridge is an implant by 'Arthrex' &  technique I use to treat the pain and physical prominence of chronic Insertional Achilles tendonopathy.  There is often a heel spur as seen in the above picture

'Speedbridge'  allows the damaged part of the tendon to be debrided of the calcified and damaged tissue.  The hard lump associated can be sawn away and then the tendon is reattached using the system in the video.

It is done as a daycase procedure under anaesthetic.

Recovery involves being in a 1/2 cast (Backslab) for 2 weeks followed by a boot with wedges under the heel for 4-6 weeks usually.

There are naturally risks associated with the procedure that you would need to consider and should always be discussed with your surgeon.  Specific to this operation they include.

  • Wound concerns - The skin in this area doesn't have a brilliant blood supply and on occasions especially if you get an infection can breakdown. This can require specialist further treatment and can can make for a poor outcome.  Its is of particular concern in people who smoke cigarettes (possibly vape too).  The wound is also over the back of the heel and occasionally it can remain sore even longer time just from contact rubbing in shoes.
  • Infection.  Mild infection in the wound edge is not too uncommon and if recognised usually settles with tablet antibiotics.  If however the repair, implants or bone gets infected it can be serious and need prolonged treatment, even further surgery. Often the presentation of infection is unexpected pain or fluid seen at wound or in a dressing and should mean you get in touch with your surgeon.
  • Thrombosis / DVT/Blood clot in the leg. This is a serious condition felt as a calf cramp or swelling that doesn't go away.  If suspected you would go for scans and blood tests. I use a preventative regime around the surgery and initial recovery that involves a flight sock on the other leg and blood thinning injections you self administer (Enoxaparin).  Even so it can still happen.