Week 1 and still in shock

So arrived at accident and emergency in my little black dress, minus my lovely new heels!!!

Was in terrible pain especially when they put the leg of my wheelchair up to support my left leg.

dr examined me and thought it was either an achillies rupture or the large calf muscle as I had severe pain in my calf all the way down to my ankle, I think where is snapped it was fairly high up as the pain was not in my ankle.

after doing the Thompson test he felt sure it was my Achilles put me in temporary cast to return to the fracture clinic two days later. once the cast went on I felt a little better.

saw consultant who then confirmed full rupture and put me in cast for 8 weeks. WHAT. This can’t be happening I had so many good exciting  things booked in over the next month, and involved in some urgent projects at work!!!! And I don’t like resting I am busy busy busy …… But not now!!!

Soooo I feel like my pain is getting worse.  Is that normal?  I have not left my bedroom for 5 days, unable to get up and down stairs, pulled muscles under arm and really I tense pain when leg is down.

I get really bad calf pain when I get up and my toes go a little  purple

As a new member will you share you week 1 pain with me so I can see if what I am feeling is normal

thanks

16 Comments »

  1. nosport45 Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 9:36 am

    Hi, welcome to the club! I experienced a lot of calf pain and toes changing colour in first two weeks. Pain was worse after a few days. . I was only in plaster for two weeks then in a ‘ boot’. Am still in it. Am guessing you’re in UK and have gone down none operative route. This site will be useful part of your recovery, listening to others experiences and some good advice on here. Good luck with the healing.

  2. davidk Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 1:05 pm

    Blondie, it is normal to feel pain and throbbing when your leg is down at this stage. That’s why the best thing you can do at this time is rest and elevate your leg–ideally, above your heart–for as long as you can muster. 8 weeks does seem like a long time to be in a cast–I would read up about the “modern” protocols on this site that recommend weight-bearing (in a “boot”) at an earlier stage. Then, talk to your OS about your treatment and why he/she is feels 8 weeks is appropriate for you. Sorry you joined our “club”, but there’s a lot of information on this site that can make your recovery journey be the best that it can be. Good luck, and happy healing! -David

  3. pegleg Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 3:06 pm

    Well done on getting your blog up and running, I am sure you will find lots of valuable support and advice here. ATR is a complete nightmare but try to stay positive and it will keep everything bearable and hep your healing - honest!

    You mentioned mentioned you were doing a fun highland fling in a previous comment so guessing you are maybe in Scotish as I am, so also under NHS care.

    Re your pain, I am glad you are going to speak to your GP, always better to safe rather than sorry but there is no doubt that ATR is initially very painful and uncomfortable but this does ease, especially after about 2 week mark. I have to admit I thought time would stand still, but her I am 13 weeks out of surgery and can already put those first few weeks out of my mind…… It does get better, gradually.

    Good luck!

  4. Stuart Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 4:23 pm

    Blondie - most high ruptures are treated non operatively as it is too difficult to sew the tendon where it is changing into muscle. You are not resticted to this consultant so maybe it would be good to investigate others who are using more modern protocols. A cast for a few weeks is OK but the recent research is pointing to early weight bearing and mobilization for non ops using a walking boot. Going down that path will have you walking sooner and lower your risk of re-rupture. Many of those following these methods are back in shoes by 8 weeks. I understand all this is new and this is of course only a blog site but since you have time on your hands you can do some reading. Arm yourself with information but I wouldn’t bother presenting anything to your current doc as it seems he is working with very old info and probably too old to change. Start with Hillie’s blog. He is in the UK and under the NHS. Normofthenorth is our resident nonop expert and can point you to more info. Regardless of the direction you take you will always find support here. Hope it goes well for you.

  5. lance310 Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 5:36 pm

    How do you post on this website??? I signed up and Im on my “dashboard” and don’t see anything along the lines of “new post” or “Post”

  6. davidk Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 5:54 pm

    Lance, from your “Dashboard” you should see a menu on the left-hand side with “Posts > Add new”. Look around–it’s there. -David

  7. lance310 Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 6:27 pm

    @davidk,

    I checked- on my dashboard, I have:

    -”Profile” w/ submenus “Your Profile” and “Your Achilles Profile”

    “Tools” w/ submenu “Tools”

    “Setting” w/ submenu “Admin Bar”

    That’s it. I responded to another post w/ my story so I guess that’ll have to suffice for now.

  8. davidk Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 6:58 pm

    Lance, try changing your blog’s “theme” and see if that helps. I think some of the themes on this site are a little buggy. I use the Quadruple Blue theme and it seems to work well. -David

  9. atr2014 Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 8:20 pm

    Lance, did you email Dennis? I had to email him to set up my blog - I had missed the directions somehow and never knew I needed to contact him. Directions are on the main page.

  10. lance310 Said,

    August 10, 2014 @ 8:30 pm

    @atr2014,

    No I haven’t done that-I’ll do that now. Thanks.

  11. ATRbuff Said,

    August 11, 2014 @ 7:28 am

    Take a look at achillesblog.com/

    suddsy/2013/06/24/end-of-wk-2-wow-progress/

  12. normofthenorth Said,

    August 11, 2014 @ 11:23 am

    @Blondie,. .. what Stuart said! Maybe a bit more forcefully, even. 8 weeks immobilization is incompetent medical care for an ATR in 2014, anywhere on the planet. And it increases rerupture risk significantly - like from 2-3% to 15-25%!! - as well as being a major PITA with added risks of falling on crutches etc. Don’t do it!
    AchillesBlog.com/Cecilia/protocols has the 3 best modern non-op protocols laid out for your review. If you can educate your ignorant doctor, you’ll be doing the next 100 ATR patients a big favor, but it might be too much to ask.
    Some less urgent things:
    - This post needs a title.
    - You mentioned being on antibiotics pre-ATR. Have you checked the labels or prescriptions to see if they were from the Cipro (fluoroquinolone) family? If so, your ATR is likely a nasty side-effect of the pills! (There’s a section of this website devoted to that issue. At least in the US, they come with a Black Box warning about tendon ruptures - finally.)
    - Post-ATR pain is very varied. But I think the throbbing pain when you lower your foot to the floor, from fluid pressure, is rare among non-ops - though nearly universal in the first few days post-op.

  13. hillie Said,

    August 11, 2014 @ 1:58 pm

    Hi again

    Whatever happens you really must not stay in a cast for 8 weeks (in the same position/angle?). At that stage you really ought to be about ready for going into 2 shoes (varies a little but typical).

    Which hospital were you treated at? Thought about asking for a referral? Persuade your specialist to go with the Exeter protocol and he will be so impressed that he will be using it all the time, doing his career (and future patients) no harm at all…

  14. blondie Said,

    August 11, 2014 @ 2:19 pm

    I am being treated in Ipswich hospital. I am booked to go back on 19th of,August to have a heel put on cast, and wonder if they might change angle then.

    I am trying to gather as much info as possible prior to this appointment so I can be prepared

    Thank you for all your replies, feeling very vulnerable , bored lonely and sore but on the,positive think I have lost 7lbs already !!!

    [WORDPRESS HASHCASH] The poster sent us ‘0 which is not a hashcash value.

  15. hillie Said,

    August 13, 2014 @ 2:04 pm

    Most of us who have been around this blog for a while understand that, while it isn’t a competition to recover from an atr quicker than others, it is important to become mobile quickly, and not purely because the collagen may or may not develop quicker. Inadequate mobility appears to create a risk much greater than atrophy or a little bit of stiffness.

    Even those readers who are quite happy to have their casts on for 12 weeks, or start late with a boot, should perhaps read this paper on venous thromoboembolism (vte) after acute achilles tendon rupture managed by plaster cast versus functional mobilisation - sound scary to you? Something to ask your doctor about if you feel that this could be an issue for you.

    bjjprocs.boneandjoint.org. uk/content/94-B/SUPP_XXXVII/358.abstract

  16. hillie Said,

    August 15, 2014 @ 11:56 am

    The paper mentioned above is pretty dry reading but nonetheless worth reading.

    It is reported that “out of the 47 patients who were treated conservatively in a non-weight bearing plaster cast, 9 patients had a thromboembolic event (19.1%).

    On the other hand, out of the 41 patients who were treated with functional weight bearing mobilisation, only 2 patients had a symptomatic thromboembolic event (4.2%).

    This shows that patients who are treated in a non-weight bearing plaster have about five times increased risk of developing a sypmptomatic VTE compared to those treated by functional weight bearing mobilisation. There was however no difference in the predisposing factors in patients who developed VTE compared to those who did not.”

    I am no scientist or medic, and this is a small sample. It is enough however to tell me to be cautious if on a slow protocol and then suffer the pains described.

    Just as you’ve been advised in other posts, please see your doctor, soon. Probably all ok but it is a risk to be resolved.

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