21 weeks Wow! How quickly time has gone.

On reflection I have to say it was no where near as bad as it seemed at the beginning. From the time of accident when I snapped my right Achilles’ tendon, the daunting feeling of the realisation of what. I had done, to the devastating diagnosis and the first Ortho Surgeon I saw, who basically said I was too old to have surgery, too many complications with infection & wound healing, who looked me in the eyes and simply said ” Prepare yourself, it’s going to take a long, long time to heal 12-15 months” fitted me in a crappy boot with 4 wedges and said he’d see me in six weeks.  I was pretty pissed off with his attitude and I thought ” I don’t thinks so buster”.  I then did more research went to my sons sports physio and asked her to refer me to the best Ortho Surgeon she new of. She made the phone call and got me into him 3 days later. I had to get another referral from my doctor but that was fine.  I had my visit to the new Ortho Surgeon who actually looked at my photos, explained what was going on, said with such a rupture almost 4 cm it would take time, he explained the difference of surgery versus conservative, pros & cons of both, but recommended surgery and said with his technique I could FWB in hinged boot within 7 days of surgery subject to pain tolerance. Now that all appealed to me, no hard casts, no crutches and no wedges. I opted for surgery he fitted me in the next day and true to word I was walking in hinged boot FWB within the fortnight following the surgery.  Took me a couple of days to get the hang of walking in the boot but with helpful advise from beanie I was up and running. Early mobility I am sure helps with moral and positive thinking and focusing week to week on the small milestones instead of looking too far ahead.

Here I am at 21 weeks post surgery and can walk without any limp, fast, slow and in between. I can do both double and single heel raises comfortably. (Let me say that I had to practice the single heal raises on injured leg for about three weeks before I succeeded, that was my hardest task and it took the longest to achieve) I can do a gentle jog with no discomfort all that is really left to achieve is getting the full strength back to how it was prior to accident. My chicken leg is no longer,  only two cm off my good leg now.  Muscles are building and getting stronger, just a little way to go and I’ll be there.

This  blog sight has been a godsend as I got as much information from the supportive bloggers as I did from my surgeon & physio, we have all offered each other support & suggestions from our own experience and cheered each other on as we reached different stages. It kept our sense of humour intact, it kept us positive, we were in it together and we understood what each other were going through, kept things real & positive and in a sense fun.

Get yourself a good physio who has experience in Achilles’ tendon ruptures & start as soon as possible, sports physios, if you’re not happy with your surgeon, get a second opinion,  constantly do your exercises fitting to the stage you are at, work on short term achievable goals, week by week, if feeling down send off a post to one of your fellow bloggers as they will respond & cheer you up in no time. Don’t focus on what you can’t do, focus on what you can and keep your mind active.

I can’t stress enough do not become complacent.  A couple of friends of mine did their Achilles several years back and once they could walk again they just thought it would all just continue healing on its own and would eventually be like it was before.  Neither did any physio, neither stuck at the exercises once they could walk.  Neither can run to this day, neither can walk on their toes today and neither can do a single heel lift without great effort and both have still got their skinny chicken leg as they didn’t rebuild their muscles correctly. One actually still has a very slight limp.

We have all come through with different surgeons, different protocol, surgery & none surgery however none of that matters so long as we are determined, stick to the exercises befitting to the stage we are at, early weight bearing as soon as possible, no being silly and taking risks that could event in rerupture, being guided by an experienced physio and keeping up with the routines well after we can walk until we achieve the results we are looking for. Remember it’s not just about mending our ruptured Achilles’ tendon, we also have to recruit and rebuild all the muscles that broke down through immobilisation in order to get out leg back to being as functional as it was prior to the incident.  Understand the dynamics in order to get the best results.

My stages are noted in my posts and I do hope that some of that information will be of use to those just starting on their journey of recovery. Please if any of you want any information just send me a message, I am so grateful to all who were there for me, my fellow bloggers, thank you all so much.

Happy to say my long, long recovery became a much shorter journey what felt so daunting at the beginning became quite a positive challenge, the weekly wins became my motivators as did those who were sharing their recovery with me.

Take heart as it is no where near as bad as it seemed at the beginning. Just gather as much good, positive advise as you can, draw on you sense of humour stay positive & commit fully to your recovery.

I wish you all a very safe, positive and speedy recovery and again a very big thank you to beanie, manny and all my other helpful and supportive bloggers who shared the journey with me and who gave me all the support and cheer ons that kept me going. I feel like throwing us all a party, glasses up Chink Chink

My 6oth is on the 24th of April and that was my goal to be back to normal by then, Yahoo! I made it

Congrats to all and a very big thank you

Kind regards, Robyn


Just thought I’d check in again and say hello and hope you are all progressing well with your recovery, whatever stage you are at. Take heart in knowing it does get better each week and the more you research and involve yourself in understanding your injury and commit to doing what is best for you at each stage the more positive your attitude becomes.

I had another visit with my physio on Wednesday and she was very happy with my improvement from the week before.  I have very little swelling in my ankle now even after the busier long days, my gait is practically normal now, the more I walk each day the better the gait is. Sometimes my ankle starts off a little stiff but the more I move around the better it comes as the day progresses.

The Achilles itself feels really strong and no inflammation in the repair site anymore. My incision scar looks fabulous, and no more hard areas underneath that area just all feels normal again. My incision was down the inside of my leg, not at the back.

My exercises still consist of

10 X double heel raises twice a day.    10x neutral to planterflexion with  therabands to work against for strengthening  twice a day 10 X circles to the left and then 10 circles to the right working against the theraband twice a day, hydro therapy in the pool doing the same without therabands but working in the water

Walking as much as I can in a day but still avoiding steep inclines & declines until muscles become stronger.

No pain, no throbbing or aching just not walking as quick paced as normal but I would say a regular pace for many.

The physio did some sports needling on Wednesday which assists healing & activates blood supply and breaks down colonies of scar tissue and fibres that have gathering during the healing process. Must say it really makes a huge difference to ROM and dorsiflection is most certainly starting to improve

The physio doesn’t want me to start and stretching of the Achilles as yet as she said it wasn’t necessary as I haven’t heal short or tight so not a lot of stretching out exercises will be necessary  outside of normal movement.  Basically it is just about building back the feet, ankle & calf muscles and strengthening for me at this stage.

I’m back in regular shoes instead of half a size up which I needed at first due to the swelling in bad foot, but that has now all subsided happy to say

Im really pleased with my progress and especially happy I have not had any set backs at this stage.  Yahoo I have hit 12 weeks so out of the prime danger zone but of course I am still mindful of being cautious and not getting too confident there is still a lot of work to be done to get back to how it was prior to accident

Im still drinking one raw vegetable green juice daily with pineapple to boost Achilles’ tendon recovery, still massaging natural coconut oil into scar and surrounds, still taking Vitamin B complex for cellular restoration, magnesium & Vitamin C for boosted healing and one protein drink post exercises. Did I mention I have lost 4 kl since the accident still eating the same I guess the health component of my healing boost has also given my metabolism a boost too

Happy healing people, stay positive, stay disciplined and commit to a positive recovery It does get better

Thinking of you all Robyn