April 2 Achilles Rupture

I ruptured my achilles on April 2 while ukrainian dancing at a family wedding. Decided to go the non surgical route. I am late 40’s & in good physical shape. I was in 2 different casts Nwb for 1 month. Then I was in a boot for 1 month weight bearing with crutches. June 4th the boot came off & I was okayed to start walking with use of 1 crutch as needed & weekly Physio. Had a few limitations - no walking on grass, crutch & railing for stairs & up stairs good foot forward only one at a time, no ramps. I was okayed to drive,

Ankle was very stiff & not as flexible as hoped. 1 month of Physio & I am not using crutches at all working on flexible ankle & strength. Have been cleared for stairs but must have railing, walking up ramp okayed, walking on lawns okayed. Working on stairs up & down to get the appropriate flex & strength in ankle. Hard part is not working too hard on getting back to normal. Also panic about rerupturing. Any time I feel something different I panic.

Really wanting to get on the golf course by Aug 1. Also want to be back on the ice curling by October.

Difficult part of injury is mental not being able to do everything you want & participate in sport/social type functions. Trying to stay positive but feel isolated.

11 Responses to “April 2 Achilles Rupture”

  1. Golfing in a month is very doable but how good you will be may depend on the side of the injury and whether you are right or left handed. I am not a golfer but there are quite a few here who could offer advice on this. Back on the ice in October is also possible but again with some restrictions. Your re-rupture danger is sliding away from now giving the treatment protocol you followed but you still need to be careful and build your strength gradually.

  2. Thanx Stuart. Injured my right achilles & I am right handed so the golf will not be good that is for sure. However, just getting out & doing something normal I think will be very therapeutic. My Physio is on side with working to get me on the course as well. We have not touched on the idea of curling yet.

    Physio gives me flexibility & strengthening exercises then I work hard at them. Then I feel a twinge & panic (rerupture thoughts bouncing everywhere) & back right off & continue to panic for a few days. I need to work on pacing myself.The balance between working for progress but not pushing too hard.

    In Physio I have been doing two footed heel lifts fairly well. She asked me last week to try a 1 footed rise. I could not get off the ground at all. This kind of freaked me out. Physio did not say if this was normal or not. Instead she had me work on 2 footed heel lifts off the end of a step. That I could do, but again 2 footed. She has me on injured foot on a step & bending at knee & ankle to touch down on the next lower step & I can’t do that yet. My ankle is still very stiff. Does anyone know if that is normal at the end of 14 weeks.

    What are the stats on rerupturing & timelines?

    Thanx for listening

  3. bevm, I played my first round of golf at 15 weeks. I went to driving range a couple of days before to pratice. It’s doable to play. For me it took a couple of holes to feel comfy enough with having my right foot following through. My PT supported me 100% for getting back on golf course. I’m know 16 weeks still not able to do a single;(
    Happy golfing

  4. Thanx Chinaxpat for your comments. I have read so much about reruptures that I am always thinking about that possibility. Were you told of situations to be extremely carefull of in the 15 week of recovery.

    PT said in this phase my tendon is healed now is the strengthening portion of recovery. I am working at the exercises they have given me but how long did it take you to get back to absolutely everything you used to do?

    Thanx for your input.


  5. Bev - Back to normal can take a couple of years but back to doing normal things much sooner. Golf will be good therapy as it involves a walk and some flexibility exercises and you do not have that explosive exercise that can cause re-rupture. The one leg lift is something many struggle with and some never do. The going up is not as important to strengthening as the going down. Going up on 2 and coming down slowly on the injured side will help and you can take some of the weight on your good leg as you start. Do not expect to touch the step just yet. I struggled with dors-flexion but it did come back over time. You can measure this flexion by standing against a wall and bending your knee. The object is to see how far you can take your foot from the wall with the knee on it. If you have your foot against the wall and your knee cannot touch it then you are in the negative and you measure the distance of the knee to the wall. +10cm (toe from wall) is about what you need before you start jogging. So far all is normal for you and you are progressing well. Do not be concerned about the stats for re-rupture. Most of these occur when the patient slips or trips or does something stupid before the tendon is strong enough. These also mostly occur before 12 weeks but some have had issues up to around the 19 week mark. For non-op the important factor is when you started walking in the boot and how long you have been in 2 shoes. You are about on par with the more modern protocols which have a lower re-rupture rate. If you had been non weight bearing for 12 weeks and in a cast then I would say your risk would be high for another 9 weeks. Your risk is lowering every day now. Your tendon wants work to align the collagen in the direction of the force so doing nothing does not encourage that strength. Keep up what you are doing. Ryanb is a speed skater and although this is not curling and he was a surgical patient it would be a good blog for you to read. One of the best things to do is walk and when confident you can add some hills. If you start to limp then slow down and shorten your stride. This is also a good sign that you have done enough so do not leave youself too far from home or a vehicle. Also if you wanted to do something a little normal then get out onto the golf course with someone and forget the tee off or any long iron shots. Play your ball from theirs when you can reach the green and concentrate on your short game. You will get a walk and also a bit of practise. You could hire a buggy but that would take away the walk. Talk to your PT about this idea first to ensure it will not break your protocol.

  6. I was having some swelling in my ankle making it very tight feeling so my walking was not fluid causing a little bit of a limp. I read on someone’s blog about using a compression stocking so I got one & wore it all day at work. When I got home I took it off & my ankle felt great. I can walk without the hesitation/limp. Wow, I had forgotten how it felt to walk normal. I am hoping the swelling will not come back. Will wear the stocking for a few days at work hopefully this is a step in the right direction.

  7. Hi Bev, I am 1 year and 1 month (3 June 2015) since my full rupture and surgical repair. I too am a keen golfer and hiker. I am very pleased to report that I am back doing both and have been for about 6 months now. It starts out slowly and very cautiously from the accident then losing the security of the boot, going into two shoes with a stiff and sore achilles, wondering if anything will ever be normal and watching every footstep like you were 2 years old. I was religious with my physio and I am very pleased to say that I can do pretty much everything I did before the rupture within reason. As Stuart says (hi Stuart, another Aussie), life takes more than one year to get back to normal. I am playing in golf tournaments with my husband, sailing, alpine hiking, walking 8kms a day and I don’t watch every step I take now. Having said that I can jog if necessary but I don’t try to run fast, what’s the point, I’m a fit 55 year old who didn’t run before the accident. My calf is still a little smaller and weaker than the other but I am working on that with exercises from my physio. I still can only do a small single heal raise but I’m not too concerned, it will come with time, work and healing. I started back to golf slowly after about 5 months (Nov 2015) with a few pitches, chips and putts. I found the twisting of the full swing a bit much and also playing a few holes at a time was good and I built up from there. I still get a bit sore if I play too much in a week but ice and rest and massage fixes that. Just listen to your body, it will tell you what to do and when to back off. Good golfing!

  8. Thanks for the update bevm. I am also non-op and always like to read about the progress of others that went non-surgical. You seem to be doing pretty well physically. I hear ya as far as mental aspects. I chatted with others and apparently that fear of re-rupture disappears after doing each activity few times, but is always there with each new activity. I am just in week 5 post rupture, but the fears of re-rupture is something that is on my mind already. I really wish there was some kind of way to determine how strong the achilles is at certain point in recovery. Update about your golf in August!

  9. I wore my compression stocking for 2 days at work. The first day was awesome. 2nd day was okay. Went to work today without stocking & swelling returned so need to put the stocking back on for work tomorrow. I sit at a desk all day with my leg down. Go to Physio tomorrow. Will see how that goes. When I can control the swelling life is great. Tomorrow wil be a better day. During this entire recovery (non op)I have only been off work for maybe 3 or 4 days outside of Dr’s & PT appointments. Of course this was possible because of the awesome support of my husband who drove me to & from work every day for 2 months. He also did all laundry & cooking & all my errands. I am so lucky & thankful for all his never ending suport.

    I have alot to be thankful for.

  10. Went to Physio today worked on balancing on one foot standin on a cushion. 2 feet eyes closed alla good. One foot balance without support needs lots of work. Okay to go up stairs with bad foot leading. Still very stiff in ankle. Tried one footed heel rise again still not off the floor.

  11. Everyone recovers differently, but I was starting to get frustrated with the lack of dorsiflexion (did I say that right). This has been a stumbling block for the last six weeks. So I went for a walk today to the end of the block & back after work today. By myself & no aids of any type, first time like this. It felt good, still not as fluid- have the hesitation because of the ankle flexibility. But I think I need to start doing this daily & increase distance. Walking up the stair normally feels good.

    Still have the goal of being on the golf course by August 1. Thought I might have a problem with my swing. Injury right foot & I am right handed. Talked to PT again & she said it should not be a problem.


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