Day 1 - I want to be operated on today.

See my Day 0 for prequel…I want to be operated on tonight.

Arrive back at hospital the morning after my late night ATR for an Ultrasound and visit to the Fracture Clinic to see Orthopaedic Surgeon (OS).

30 minute wait till ultrasound… repeating thought “I want to be operated on today.” , “I want to be operated on today…”

Ultrasound tech: “Are you talking to me or yourself?”

30 minute wait to see OS… repeating thought “I want to be operated on today.” , “I want to be operated on today…”

OS: Hi Dave, I want you to take a look at my 2 ankles. I suffered an Achilles Tendon Rupture (ATR) 4 years ago. Can you guess which one?

Me: Well, one of your calves and legs is much skinnier than the other.

OS: You think? (sarcastic)  My friends call it my peg leg.  The point is I am an OS, I went to the best of the best to have this operated on and if I had to do it all over again…I wouldn’t have had it operated on.  We got this great protocol from University of Western Ontario (UWO) and I have using it for the past 2 years and am happy with the outcomes.

Me: I think I still have my heart set on having it operated on today because I have been suffering from calcific Achilles tendinopathy for the past 2 years and it has been driving me crazy.  I just want you to go in and fix it all up.

OS: Dave, if I go in, I am sewing together spaghetti and now you are telling me you have bad spaghetti.   I really suggest that it would be better if we don’t operate. I am  going to put you into a hard cast for 3 weeks with your toes pointing down to shorten your achilles and then we are going to change the angle of your foot every week or so after that.

Me: (THINKING….and its magically going to heal itself?) Ummm, ok, I guess… I thought I was going to be operated on today but if you really believe this is the best course of action…let’s go for it.

OS: I do…what colour cast do you want?

Me: Green

I go home sporting my fluorescent green cast thinking…“Did I do the right thing?”

I discover and stay up till 3am reading….boy,do I feel better. Thanks Dennis and Normofthenorth in particular.

2 Responses to “Day 1 - I want to be operated on today.”

  1. That’s a lot to digest in a short amount of time, with significant long term consequences. But sounds like you’ve done the right things to get comfortable with the proposed treatment route. Having an Ortho that supports a modern accelerated protocol also puts you in a great place for success. Unfortunately, here in the UK conservative (non-op) treatment is used extensively, but the protocols are often traditional non-aggressive ones. We have some catching up to do on this front.

    Good luck, and keep us posted.

  2. Good luck, Dave! Even with the best protocols, there’s still a “crap-shoot” aspect to this recovery — a distribution of results around the mean. . . and the effect of your tendinopathy on your recovery is a wild card in my mind. Most ATRs (including most of the UWO-study patients’ ATRs) come out of the blue.

    The good news is that most ATR patients who DID have a prior problem with their AT, find their situation significantly improved (or even cured) by the trauma and the recovery.

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