Archive for September, 2010

Sep 27 2010

Week 9 thoughts and “boy, that was stupid”.

Published by elsurfer under Uncategorized

I haven’t intended to post as much as I have been, but things seem to change every week. I did see my PT last Friday who added another strengthening exercise and asked questions about healing too long especially with the way I’ve been progressing. They took some ROM measurements, said I was fine and in no imminent danger of an elongated Achilles.

So over the weekend, I ended up camping at the beach w/o a car, and needed to get to a Polynesian festival nearby about 2 miles away. Figured with the way I’ve been healing up and endurance building, the walk would be nice to work on my stride and build up some calf muscle. I could call a taxi if I was hurting too much on the way back. It was warm this weekend in the 90’s.

I get to the event uneventfully, and ended staying a few hours. However, by this time, I’ve been on my feet a good 4-5 hours in the heat and am seriously doubting my ability (and desire) to walk back. What’s hurting at this point? My heel, and a little bit of general soreness around the lower ankle. I decided to leave and after looking around for a cab a good 15 minutes, none were to be found on stand-by. I could have called a cab company from my cell, but knowing that it would cost some $40-$50 to go two miles back didn’t sit well with me. I decided to walk back and figured I could stop and sit when I needed to.

The walk back felt like 5 miles when it was only two. Made it back to camp and iced down the ankle. No damage done after 5-6 hours standing and walking other than a very tender heel. Today it is barely stiff, however my atrophy has become more apparent, or maybe my memory is extremely short, but my ATR’d calf looked smaller than last week! I broke out the measuring tape and it is the same as last weekend (hasn’t shrunk). At further glance the appearance of shrinkage was due to the swelling going down, fat burning off and more definition in muscle tone as I work the calf. Whew… Anyways, being on my feet that long and walking that kind of distance has me saying “boy, that was stupid”. On good note, the tightness (or is it calf weakness) gets lesser everyday. I have PT in about 6 hours and will be taking it easy this week just due to my work schedule.

No responses yet

Sep 21 2010

8 weeks post op. Video, booted the boot, life marches forward.

Published by elsurfer under Uncategorized

Sorry this update was over due. I met the doc last week at the 8 week post op mark. I gave the official Dr. approved “good riddance” to the boot (although I actually did this just prior to 7 weeks). Officially - no hard exercise (running) for another month or so, but I’m working hard at least every other day. PT is now working on more strength exercises now.

The daily usual: Stretching, Theraband, ABC’s, Icing, raised foot.
Added in PT this week: double heel lifts, more stretching, core exercises, balancing on one foot (which works other foot and leg muscles).
Added on my own: Squats, 10-15 mile bike rides (almost ready to clip-in, but common sense is getting the better of me).

The good: ROM is about 90% all around. I mostly don’t feel the tightness at the back of the leg on Achilles and calf. There’s still some swelling, but it’s to be expected, it’s not debilitating.

The bad: I feel tightness when the toes are pulled toward me - not at the back of the ankle, but at the front as if the “arch” between the top of the foot and shin is pinched at the end of the range. However, the ROM is the same as the non ATR’d foot.

The ugly: I know I’m making improvements everyday, but I’m struggling with calf weakness. The flexibility is there, the strength ISN’T. My stride looks almost normal and I’m moving pretty fast when I walk. Heheh, I’ll grudgingly say “frustrating plateau” although I won’t give in to it.

What next: I meet the doc at 12 weeks (1 more month). PT continues at twice a week. I plan on riding on dirt tomorrow night (just easy fire roads) with very light climbs. I think I’ll paddle my kayak over the weekend. I’m going to try to do some very light Karate beginning October (stretching, forms, no contact)

Calf measurements are: Non-ATR’d 18.5 inches, ATR’d is back at 18 inches (plus two inches in circumference since the cast came off).

Here are the clips utilizing a tripod - I’m getting better at this:
(side view, front/back, heel lifts, squats, stairs).

9 responses so far

Sep 07 2010

7 weeks post op walking / lifts - Vids.

Published by elsurfer under Uncategorized

I’m feeling great! When people on here tell you it gets better, please trust that it will. My stride is getting and feeling more normal every day.

Pros:
Ankle ROM is getting better
Calf is getting stronger
Stride is getting longer and faster.
I’m not thinking about the short strides as much (while still being careful), this is the section of the stride where Doug53 describes as full weight and pushing off goes on the ATR’d foot.
The longer/faster strides definitely require more thought and effort.
Most of all, the Achilles doesn’t feel so tight as when I got out of the cast.

I have been working hard on stretching, icing, and raising daily. And I’m standing (probably more than the docs/PT’s would ever recommend) while doing the chores around the house and garage in 2 shoes.

Cons (most of these are normal expected) :
Swelling is still there especially when standing for long periods.
Heel and outside ball of foot can still get achy when standing for long periods.
Stitch can can get itchy, I have to put some hydro cortisone cream to relieve it every once in a while.
I broke down and bought a pair of Crocs (I swore I’d never own a pair of these (or Birkenstocks))

Here are the vids, please ignore the the impression in my right ATR’d leg, I had it resting on the edge of my desk. Socks also seem to leave impression due to swelling, so I’m trying to avoid ankle socks as well. Sorry for the noise and dogs, end of the day and lots of commotion in the house.

2 responses so far

Sep 03 2010

PT: Week 1 - hand slapped

Published by elsurfer under Uncategorized

Went to my 2nd PT session today, ROM is getting better and they’ve added some more flexibility exercises to my “folder”. Same routine again, massage and breakup of adhesion around the injury area. Then flexibility and limited strength exercises.

However;

I’m getting chewed out for arriving in two shoes. The PT’s conferred with the Dr. and is saying anyone 6 weeks post op should strictly remain in the boot for the most part until about 12 weeks total as the AT is still healing. That would make it mid October. So question: When has the the glue fully dried? When is it safe to say that the healing is done and it’s time to really build strength in the calf (start tugging on that AT)?

5 responses so far

Sep 01 2010

Scaraway - silicon strips

Published by elsurfer under Uncategorized

I bought a box of this for about $22.00 USD. Contains 8 strips that are 3.5″ x 1.5″ Each strip is supposed to last a week. My scar is about 4″, so I’m using this sort of diagonally to get some length over entire scar. I have to use some medical tape to help keep it on.

My scar is lumpy and more discolored towards the bottom because it’s where the ankle tends to wrinkle up. I’ve read lots of good / positive reviews on it.

I wasn’t so concerned about the appearance of the scar itself, but more so the lumpiness and smoothness of it.

When i go back to exercising, I don’t want the lumps to be a source of irritation and rubbing in my shoes.

2 responses so far