36 Hours Until Surgery After 8 Weeks Since Injury

To introduce myself, I am a 39 year old who works at a company that uses warehouses to fulfill orders for stuff.  I need to be able to walk fairly long distances on occasion while at work, but I can work from home most of the time.

My injury happened on the way back home from a weekend celebration in Chicago for St. Patrick’s day.  My wife and I drove back to TN where we stopped in Indianapolis on the way home to see some friends.  When we got there, they were brewing beer and wanted to play a game of football.  I obliged as I used to play in high school and did not think much of it.  We were about 30 minuets into playing when I took off from the line of scrimmage and heard the pop.  I looked back at our QB thinking he hit me in the leg with the football REALLY hard, but he was looking at me waiting on me to take off.  Apparently he wasn’t close enough to hear the pop, but I could immediately tell there was a problem.  The wife, as a saint, ran to CVS and got me one of those refillable ice packs along with the Alieve and ibuprofen.  It really helped as I kept the ankle pretty dang cold for the first 48 hours.

I had hurt my left ankle multiple times throughout my life and I thought that I rolled it really bad like I had in the past.  Turns out that wasn’t the case.  About a year prior to this happening I was on a cruise when I had a similar accident when I took off running towards the stage during a show because we were competing in a silly game.  It was a similar pop, but not quite as bad.  Hurt a little less, but the rest of my cruise was going to be me limping around.  Good thing it was toward the end of the cruise.

So here I am now about 7 or 8 weeks from my “re-injury” while playing football with friends.  I finally went to a doctor after my sister, a physical therapist, took a look at me 4 weeks after the incident and did a few things to try to diagnose the problem.  She sees these injuries often, but she wasn’t 100% sure how bad it was.  Because my leg was so swollen I couldn’t identify the problem.  She helped massage down the swelling and showed my wife how to work it out as well. I was in tears from how much relief the massage provided. I had been walking on the leg for weeks and it didn’t seem to be getting any better and was still very weak.  After my sister performed the calf squeeze test, she was pretty sure something had torn.

Once the swelling went down, my wife noticed that the back of my leg felt like there was a sizable gap or divot where my leg muscle should have been.  That was when it confirmed what my sister had feared.  It was a Saturday so I could not line up my doctor back home until the following Monday.  I was really looking forward to seeing  doctor at this point because I had feared being with a limp for the rest of my life.  I love dancing with my wife and I had pangs of fear that might be over.  While I know I can recover and it will take a while, this really felt like it changed who I was and how people would perceive me.  I didn’t want to be the guy who couldn’t dance anymore.

So after a few doctor visits, MRI, and X-rays, I was put in touch with a specialist, Dr. Robert Thompson.   From what I understand, he is an amazing doctor and I am lucky to have him as my surgeon. After seeing him for my consult about a week ago he outfitted me with a boot.  As soon as I started to wear the boot, it took alot of the stress off my heal.  Because I had been mostly walking on my heal there had been pain of pins and needles a few times a day.  Now that I have the boot, I feel like a different person and I felt like I was finally starting to take care of this problem.  Upon my last visit with Dr. Thompson he gave me some inserts to put in the boot to start pointing my toe down a little more.  I’ll have to admit, I tried my best to wear the inserts but they were so uncomfortable and they kept slipping. I didn’t feel like they were doing much other than making my boot very uncomfortable.  I went to a crawfish festival in Nashville this last weekend and wore the inserts over half the night after much walking.  They got to be so uncomfortable that I had to take them out later in the evening.  I’ll continue to wear them and try to build up to wearing them all the time, but my surgery is 36 hours away so I’ll do what I can.

Images of my MRI with the 4CM gap:

I’m very fortunate to have a friend who experienced a similar injury. He is letting me borrow his crutches and his knee scooter.  I have been half joking about putting a racing stripe and some flames on my boot and the knee scooter.  It would seem appropriate as I tend to walk pretty fast and the humor would certainly help.  My wife is on her way to another city to go get the borrowed medical equipment.  Again, she’s been my saving grace and I’m so fortunate to have someone like her to help me out like she does.

I did see the iWalk 2.0 crutch on this website a few days ago.  After much research and thinking about how long I will have to keep my weight off of my leg, I figured it would be worth the investment if it can mean I can have a little more freedom and not be such a burden on my wife. When I first got it I put it together some of the holes did not line up on the foot of the crutch to the support tubes.  I’ll post some pictures if possible later, but I emailed the support and they replied about 15 minutes later.  I just didn’t see it because my spam filter caught it.  I later called them and they called me back the same day.  They even made a quick video to show me what I needed to do to fix the issue.  I figured I could have done the fix before calling them, but I didn’t want to damage my new $150 crutch.

Pictures of the support tubes not lining up:

Here is the video that the iWalk company sent me soon after I emailed them (over the weekend) to show me how to fix the issue I was having with the support tubes:

I’ve been trying out my new crutch for a few hours now around the house.  I even went up the stairs. I plan on going back down shortly, but it is certainly more comfortable to wear my boot when using the crutch. Also, some of the band tend to rub the back of my knee even with the supplied pads.  I’m sure I’ll get it rigged to be comfortable once I’m back up and walking after my surgery.

I’m hoping this site will help me work through my fears of being put under the knife as well as encourage me to stick with working through this.  I’m pretty concerned on how this will impact my summer.  The wife and I have some plans to ramble this summer and hope to see some state parks, go camping and just drink up life (like we usually do).  I certainly don’t want to put a damper on us getting out and living life.

2 Responses to “36 Hours Until Surgery After 8 Weeks Since Injury”

  1. Caseinpoint, good luck recovering from surgery. Best advice I received was take the pain pills. I was off of them about 9 days after surgery but they were my best friend for those 9 days. Speedy recovery to you

  2. Thanks! I will keep that in mind. I’m not a fan of pain killers, but I’m sure I will be thankful for them.

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