The Next Step(s)

December 10, 2015

It is now exactly 15 days since my achilles surgery. Things were going smoothly in the last few days with my cast, but wow, I was sure ready to get that thing off my leg! It seemed like the hours were crawling by as I waited for my appointment, and then when the time came to go to the Cast Clinic, I still had to wait 2 more hours in the waiting room. I didn’t mind though; my surgeon is extremely busy and it was nice to be surrounded by people who all looked like me (feet in walker boots or casts).

So like I said, not having the cast on is fantastic! But now comes the real work. My surgeon said “You need to start physiotherapy NOW”. He flexed my foot to activate the tendon and WOW - excruciating pain. I don’t think I have ever felt something like that before. The tendon is so tight with all the inflammation from the surgery and immobility that this is going to really take some work and perseverance. ¬†However, it is good to know that the pain is normal and hopefully with activity and such it will gain its flexibility over time. I am going to see my physiotherapist later today, so hopefully she can whip this ankle back into shape.

I have titled this post the Next Step(s) because I am working on the next step of my recovery, but am also literally learning to walk and weight bear again so I can take steps normally.  I am a little disappointed that I still have to walk with crutches, especially since there is so much snow and ice outside. I can weight bear a little, but like I said, the pain is just too intense right now. My surgeon has high hopes for me though, and that in 4 weeks I should be walking flat in my boot without any heel lifts (I currently have two in right now). I hope he is right!

Has anyone else experienced this severe tightness in the back of your ankle after surgery? Will the physiotherapist have some tips/exercises on how to improve my walking in the next few weeks? I just don’t see how I can work up to it alone when I was completely immobile for two weeks and now I have to get walking again.

Hopefully, the next time I post I will have some drastic changes to report :)

Happy healing!

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6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. joemoore3  |  December 10th, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    Tomorrow is 5 weeks post-op for me. Still in a boot and using the knee-scooter. I see the doc tomorrow and all he said we’re going to do is talk about PT. Not actually walk or do PT but talk about it. I’m going out of my mind not being able to walk and having to rely on others to get outside. Asking someone to pick me (and the f’ing scooter) up is a real chore.

    Anyways, glad to hear your progressing well. The pain will vanish shortly as your body remembers how it’s supposed to work. Don’t give up - you’ll be back to normal sooner than you think.

  • 2. gutzer  |  December 10th, 2015 at 3:22 pm

    i remember well, I had to have medical transport take me to appts and PT when I first started because I live alone and none of my elderly neighbors could throw my knee scooter into their car and give me a lift, what a pain, you’ll be walking soon and this will be a memory, best wishes to you.

  • 3. beanie  |  December 10th, 2015 at 5:45 pm

    Hey AWT, I’m glad to hear you’re in the boot and PWB! Hopefully the worst is over now. Yup, I had a lot of pain moving to the boot. The stretch required on the tendon to get me into the boot with the heel touching was excruciating - I remember the attending looked at me surprised when I flinched and exclaimed as she pushed me in - it hurt! Then she told me to walk with the crutches and that really hurt when I put weight on it. Satisfied she sent me on my way. I tried a few more steps and then gave up and crutched my way back home. As the days went by I’d keep making attempts and each day things got better and I walked with the crutches more and more, then I started putting less weight in the one crutch, then using only one crutch and finally ditched both crutches. I was FWB in the boot by 3.5 weeks, so it took 1.5 weeks for me to adjust. Your physio will help you for sure, don’t worry. Good luck and happy healing!

  • 4. awtang  |  December 10th, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    Thank you Beanie! Your comments make me feel much better. I was starting to worry that I wouldn’t be walking very much, but a few more weeks doesn’t seem so bad. I went to the physiotherapist and currently we are just working on trying to keep the swelling under control and getting the blood flowing to the area. I think it already feels a bit better; it can only get better from here!

  • 5. andyw  |  December 11th, 2015 at 4:01 am

    Alright AWT!! Progress and on the road to recovery. PT is key and so are whatever exercises prescribed. Here’s wishing a smooth recovery for all of us!

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