I visited the ortho yesterday for a follow up. Mind you, this was 6 days post-op which is REALLY early in the process, but I am on holiday next week (to the beaches of Lake Michigan) and the ortho wanted to see me before we left.
Upon my arrival I was escorted to the cast room where I had my splint removed (In the OR, I was placed in a splint, made of fiberglass that covered the back of my leg. This was wrapped in a flexible bandage, so the whole apparatus was quite light.) and was told I was next going to be xray-ed. The xray tech came in about 2 minutes later and I told her that I wasn’t sure why I needed and xray–I have a soft-tissue injury which would not appear in the image of the xray. She said that it was on my orders (I call B—s—!) to which I replied I am refusing the xray–I didn’t want the radiation exposure and I didn’t feel it was necessary, and I would discuss it with my doctor. She waddled off in a BIG huff.
My doctor was 30 minutes late seeing me (did you ever know an ortho who wasn’t always late for an appointment?), and when he came in, I asked him why he ordered an xray for a soft tissue injury. He said he didn’t, and wondered why it was on the orders (this particular practice is quite large–8 surgeons and 2 physicians assistants, its own physical therapy practice, imaging [xray, CT, MRI]). I then realized that they probably were just “padding” the bottom line for my visit by taking xrays.
Long story short, I had a look at the incision, which is healing quite nicely. It’s about 6 inches in length running from the top of my heel bone to about 1/4 of the way up the back of my leg. I counted 27 staples holding the wound closed. I was placed in a full fiberglass cast (it’s a very elegent black) that feels as though it is “protecting” me better, and I do realize that it’s not providing any support or protection, it’s just immobilizing the ankle. It’s pretty light weight and so far, I haven’t had any problems.
As I wrote previously I’m on holiday next week, and a bit disappointed I can’t swim with the kids because of the incision, but all-in-all, this process has gone very, well, swimmingly. My next visit is 15 July and I will be fitted with a boot and be PWB. WOOHOO! Keep your chins up everyone. This is definitely not the end of the world. For those of us who were quite active, it is a royal pain in the arse, but I am certain each of us will find other activities to keep us going.