Nearly 8 Weeks Post-Op

Second time to type this as it seems to have been lost (aaaarrrgghh!). I have been having issues with being able to update my blog lately…  It will be 8 weeks on Dec 7th and I have been off crutches and out of boot since November 15th appt (not with doc permission - he thinks I am still in a boot). Have been in shoes with lift, though not sure they are all that necessary - mostly raises my scar above the edge of shoe to avoid irritation.  I will go see him on Dec 8th and walk in with no boot and plan to be honest about whatever he asks. As he said last time, “Better to be lucky than smart.”  Certainly applies this time around too.

Started PT at nearly 6 weeks and was very honest about what I have been doing (with and without permission). However, she did not get direct communication from Dr. so first 3 sessions were really just massage, mobility manipulation and slight resistance. I felt like it was a waste of money by 3rd but now they have apparently spoken so I will see what progress can be made next week. I have continued resistance bands, tracing alphabet with toes (forgot about that one), and ROM exercises on my own at home. PT did measure ROM and it was -2% flexing (I would have thought 0% but I guess you don’t have to be 0% to stand! who knew?). I forget the other direction but comparison wise to other I think it feels and looks just the same when pointing - all that driving and pushing off on pool wall, I guess. Still going down the stairs flat-footed and foot pointed out perpendicular.

With exception of limits on exercise, life is essentially back to normal - carpools, cooking, errands etc.. just at a slower pace.  Have been swimming about 6 miles a week and Pilates 3 times a week. Getting a little bored however. I did try elliptical at about 7 weeks and it was do-able but for other reasons haven’t gotten back on it. Tried the stationary bike too, but ankle really did feel too wobbly at that point, even pedaling ‘flat footed.’  I do see the necessity of the boot - I have had a couple of missteps, though fortunately nothing major. A couple days ago I was in the grocery store as they were stocking up. Most boxes were stacks and obvious but there was one lone box of heavy cans that I managed to kick (sideways somehow) with my bad foot and really felt that! I had to stop and catch my breath (and spoke to the manager - had I been old and frail it could have been much worse).  Also a couple times on uneven ground and slopes where the toe lands higher than the heel unexpectedly. Managed to react fast enough so no real damage but reading the Brit who just re-ruptured on the curb at 4 months certainly does put a worry in the back of one’s mind.

One piece of advice for all - get a copy of your PT records at the end! I failed to do so on my other side and never anticipated I would need them but sure would like to have a reference now of when I did what for comparison and moving forward. My former therapist (who was more aggressive than this one) left the old place so I have no way to track him down either.

Happy Holidays to all and I will add more when there is some measurable progress.

5 Responses to “Nearly 8 Weeks Post-Op”

  1. Hi Duke 88,

    Nice to get an update from you. It would seem that we are both very similar in that we do things that our Doctors tell us we can not. I am only using my big boot when I go outside and no crutches even though my doctor tells me that I should still be inthe boot at all times and that I can not start physio until the 13th Dec, that will be just after week 8. I have been doing home physio for over two weeks now and all seems fine to me. I am going to try shoes next week and move my physio appointment forward to next week. I am also going to go swimming, again against doctor advice, he keep telling me that this is the last thing that I should do.

    Question, do you still sleep with a splint at night?

    Happy healing,


  2. Hi Heather,

    No, I don’t sleep with anything at night, but I am also a very peaceful sleeper (though I do turn over several times a night). What I have been doing is trying to keep my leg propped on a ‘husband’ pillow (the reading pillow with arms) also with a pillow under my knee so it doesn’t hyperextend the knee or get stressed. I am mainly doing this to try to keep the swelling down, of which there is a bit more with the increased activity. Probably don’t really need to at this point but am used to it now.

    I highly recommend the swimming. I guess in my rewrite of lost comments I failed to mention that I was doing a little balancing(one leg) in the water and a few other exercises (toe lifts, but hardly any weight from recovering leg - just along for the ride). No pain at all and have seen a bit of improvement but it is so much harder than it seems it should be (or compared to the good foot). Standing in waist high water takes so much weight/ pressure off the body that it is just a great way to start slowly. My Dr commented at 4 weeks about swimming with the buoy between legs - I told him I don’t swim with buoy and why would I? His response was so I don’t put any weight on the bad leg when I stop. Well, first of all, I don’t stop and rest while swimming laps (except at end of pool occasionally) and secondly you can just stand on the good leg and thirdly, there is so little relative weight I don’t see how it matters much.

    I say one knows ones abilities and body better than anyone else and if you feel good to swim then do it! You have to stay sane, too!

    Good luck and keep me posted!

  3. Hi Pamela,

    Thanks for the additional info. I am not following my doctors advise when it comes to sleeping, he tells me that I should stillm be in the big boot at night and about 2 weeks ago I bought one of those night splints that have a solid back slab and velcro fastening. but I have been know to fall asleep on the sofa with nothing on my leg and have had no issues so I think that I will try sleeping at night with out it, might try your pillow idea. Also I am definatly going to go swimming this week, need to get my heart rate up and start buring some of this extra weight that I have put on whilst sitting on the sofa.

    As for the swelling, I am the same now that I am using the leg more there is swelling by the end of the day but it goes down with a quick ice beofre i go to bed and a bit of a rug with some bio-oil , good for the scar and for the leg in general. Do you use any oitment or oils? I di find them very good in deed, would recommend them.

    Will let you how I get on at the physio and with swimming this week.

    Take care,


  4. Interesting stuff. After the very early times when you’re ankle is vulnerable everywhere including in bed, I think the ONLY reason to sleep in a boot (or brace) is to make sure you lose any calf-and-AT length overnight. Some people find it a “stretch” to get into the boot in the AM, for example. If you have to get up NOW to go to the bathroom, things could easily go wrong.

    You guys both seem to have drifted in the direction of the UWO schedule, either on purpose or accidentally. Heck, you’ll never see ME recommending that anybody go slower!

  5. Hi Pamela,

    As you know today was my first Physio session and I am very pleased to say that it went well. I am out of my boot and in to 2 shoes, with the exception of when I leave the house and I know that I will be on my leg for more than half an hour, then have to wear the boot.
    I still have to elevate my leg as much as possible and I was given a set of exercises to do 4 times a day. The physio, Louise, was generally happy with my ankle/foot/leg/achilles. She said that i had a good range of movement and that we just had to work on getting the stiffness out of the achilles and start building up the calf so as I can walk better. Very pleased to say the least!!

    So how about you, whats your news this week?


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