A complete rupture of the hamstring tendon means that the tendon is completely pulled off from the bone. This can be treated with physiotherapy or surgically depending on the severity of the injury and your lifestyle.
Surgery is done through an incision along the crease of the buttocks. Two to three anchors are inserted into the ischial tuberosity (where the hamstring used to attach) and from these anchors are sutures. These sutures are sewn into the end of the detached tendon and pulled back up to the bone where the sutures are then tied. The sutures can withhold some force but the outcome of the surgery is due to whether your body can heal the tendons back down to the bone. This takes about 12 weeks.
After surgery you will walk with crutches immediately.
Sitting will be uncomfortable in the first 2 weeks because you will be sitting on your wound.
Physiotherapy will need to commence soon after your surgery.
You will not be able to drive for at least 6-8 weeks.
You will be able to return to sport approximately 4-6 months after surgery at the discretion of your surgeon
- Blood clot (DVT)
- Nerve injury
- Tendon healing failure
Instructions for AFTER the surgery
- All wounds are closed with “dissolving” stitches and covered with a waterproof dressing.
- Leave bulky dressing undisturbed for 48 hours. You can remove bulky dressing after the 48 hours.
- Leave the waterproof dressing on until your review by Dr Sim, in two weeks after the surgery.
- You may shower and get the waterproof dressing wet.
- You may put your full weight through your leg when walking.
- You must use crutches AT ALL TIMES.
- Try not to limp
- You will need physiotherapy. This should commence 2-3 days after surgery.
- Excessive persistent pain
- Pus discharge from wound
- Excessive pain AND tenderness AND swelling in the calf
Should any of these symptoms persist contact Dr Sim’s rooms or after hours emergency.
- Clear/Bloodstained discharge from wound. THIS IS NORMAL for the first few days.
- Swelling. This is expected for the first week. It can be reduced by regular use of an ice pack
- Pain. You will receive a prescription for pain medication on discharge. (Pain relief medication works best if taken REGULARLY).
- Wound healing
- Walk with crutches at all times
- Gentle movement of the hip and knee allowed
- As per diagram
REMEMBER: BEND YOUR KNEE IF BENDING YOUR HIP
- Wean off crutches
- Achieve normal walking pattern
- Range of Motion of the hip and knee as tolerated
- Add resistance once full range of motion is achieved
- Gentle stretching (no hamstring stretching)
- Begin aerobic conditioning
- Progress total leg strengthening
- Begin hamstring stretching
- Begin hamstring strengthening
- Progress to advanced total leg strengthening
Return to sport? Only when suitably CONDITIONED