6 Weeks Post Op - PWB

My issues started in August ‘08 as I was doing running drills (plyometrics) and felt a slight twinge in my L Achilles. Didn’t feel like a big deal - no pop or sensation of being wacked in the calf just a slight pull. A few days later I went out for a run and by 3 miles I knew I had a problem. I saw a podiatrist who did not seem overly concerned. Treated it with prolotherapy, no suggestion of a boot just lay off the running for now. I turned to the bike which was not an issue but I continued to limp around for weeks. I noticed a pronounced lump develop at my heel and the red flag went up. The podiatrist sent me for PT and when the therapist took a look at it he said he wouldn’t touch it until I had an MRI.

I knew at that point I need a new doctor. My research took me to a foot and ankle orthopedist at the Hospital for Special Surgery and sure enough the achilles was shot. Thank God I found this guy because the difference in treatment was like night and day. The problem was that since I had been gimping around with this for so long I required a tendon transfer to repair (reconstruct) the tendon.  FHL from the left foot. Surgery on 1/2/09 went well according to the Surgeon and I was home with a cast and crutches by 2 PM the same day. NWB with crutches was problamatic at best so I was using my wife’s walker from her knee replacement episode. In any event I ordered the knee scooter (Turning Leg Caddy) the next day. I don’t think I would have made it without it. That and the bedside bottle for those over night bathroom callsand the drycast for the shower made the situation a lot more pallitable.

2 weeks later 1st Post Op visit. Cast off into the boot and given antibiotics - my guy is hyper vigilant about the infection risk. It was great to get rid of the cast but ,as you well know, being in the boot 24/7 is no bargain. I don’t sit still well so at least with the scooter I can get out and about and feel the wind in my face. I put together an upper body routine so at least I’m as active as possible without violating my doctors guidelines. He seems to be taking a fairly conservative approach to recovery but I put myself in his hands so I’m dancing (not) to his tune. He says his job at this point is to protect me from myself. Dude knows his patient.

2nd Post Op visit - incision is healing well, past the infection risk and PWB portion of recovery begins. I find that walking with 1 crutch gives me enough support - I don’t know if that’s the way it’s supposed to be done but so far so good. I walked once around the block and I felt a real tenderness in the affected heel. I think he must have used a screw to reattach the tendon there but thats really been the first pain I’ve had since before the surgery.

I can’t quite get my mind around the length of time involved in this recovery. I’m still a month away from PT and can’t drive my car (stick) for another 3 months. I can see I will be commendering my wife’s car for the near term.

When I look back the first 6 weeks have gone by quickly but this is getting old fast.

4 Comments so far

  1. KellyU on February 16th, 2009

    I am only six days post op. I was playing squash when left at let go, and wow it let go. Ironically, I blamed my playing partner.

    I tried out a knee caddy today to possibly buy or rent. It sounds like you would recommend one of these. My only arguement against one was the consideration that a walker combined with crutches burns some calories. I am woried about turning into a loaf.

    I do have hardwood floors throught my house and that knee scouter did feel rather sporty.

    You do recommend the knee scooter?
    What are you doing for upper body?
    Please tell me your close to weight bearing

    good luck

  2. creaky on February 16th, 2009

    Kelly
    The Knee Scooter made a big difference for me. It allows me to get out for a longer time than I could spend on the crutches which does wonders for my mental state. I was out for 90 mins today and followed that with 30 min walking with the crutches. I was using 1 crutch at first but that was a mistake (heel pain) so I calmed down and went to 2 crutches. It’s not a big calorie burner but it beats the recliner. It helps me stay away from that mindless bordom eating.
    Upper body - I do chin/pull ups. I can manage Push ups with the bad leg off the floor. I also do some stuff with therabands and core exercises on the BOSU ball. Anything that doesn’t put any stress on the affected leg.
    I’m another 2 weeks from FWB in the boot. There is still a lot more road in front of me than behind. As long as I see improvement I think I can stay positive.
    Hang in there we can do this!

  3. KellyU on February 18th, 2009

    Amen

    the scooter is great. I have already gone grocery shopping. Hands free is nice in the house, I may even take one of the mutts out for a stroll with it.

    I think I will start on a similiar routine. Cheers

  4. creaky on February 18th, 2009

    I’m glad it’s working for you. One word of caution, I find it’s not the most stable ride so keep alert with the pooch. I was coasting a bit down a hill and almost did an endo……..reality check:-)

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