| Home | Article Database | Resources | Tools & Just for Fun | Search HY |

Ask the Medical Expert Archives 2000-2004

Expert Home  |  Archives by Date  |  Search Expert Archives  |  For Professionals  |  For Consumers


Heel Cord
April 2003

Q. My 8-year-old son was born with muscle atrophy on all the muscles on the back side of his left leg. In addition, he is a toe walker and has a very tight heel cord. We have done 8-10 Botox injections, casting, and physical therapy with success--but only with temporary results. At what point to we "bite the bullet" and have the heel cord lengthening surgery done?

A. This is a difficult decision and best made in conjunction with your orthopedic surgeon. You have been following standard, accepted procedures for dealing with a difficult problem. The surgical procedures are done to lengthen the Achilles tendon (heel cord) and allow for a more normal gait and muscle development. Here are some good website references to expand your information on the topic.

http://www.muscular-dystrophy.org/information/Care/achilles.html

http://www.stanford.edu/group/nmbl/research/applications/tlengthen.html

http://www.indiana.edu/~hperk500/gcma01a/a123macw.pdf

Disclaimer Back to Ask the Medical Experts