Port Vale winger Lewis Haldane may require another operation to aid his recovery from a broken leg.
Haldane, 26, suffered a double fracture to his left leg in a Johnstone's Paint Trophy tie at Tranmere in August.
"He had some pins inserted that may be hampering his progress any further," boss Micky Adams told BBC Radio Stoke.
"It may be a case that the surgeon removes those pins because the bone's completely healed now. Maybe the pins are irritating his ankle slightly."
Adams continued: "We'll assess that in the next few days but he may have a minor operation to eradicate a slight problem, that we hope then will push him on."
Haldane missed the first three months of last season after being bitten by an insect during pre-season training.
Vale, who are without several first-team players because of injury, have lost their last four matches in League Two and have slipped into the bottom half of the table.
However, Adams is positive that the club's fortunes are about to turn.
"We have to analyse what went wrong  in terms of the goals we conceded," he said. "We could have defended both goals better.
"There's a little bit of a lack of defensive nous or real desire to keep a clean sheet at the moment.
"Until we get that back as a team and as a back four, we won't win games.
"I know that we'll come through this little spell. We've just got to get back to basics."
Port Vale go to 11th-placed Rotherham on Saturday.