May 19 2008


Dead fish

Posted at 7:41 am under wks 5-6

Have walked sans-boot around my dinky little apartment.  It started as standing in the shower, and progressed to “I’m not putting that #@*& boot on for the 10 feet between my bed and the bathroom”.  Now I’m shuffling that little foot around in it’s clean cotton sock everytime I’m home.  It’s a safe place that’s 90% hallway for me to grab on to.

Anyway, gimping around my apartment scares me a little.  My poor little foot feels like a dead fish at the end of my leg, and totally useless.  Can anyone out there give me an idea when the foot starts feeling useful?  I’m almost at 6 weeks and wondering when those that went before started feeling some strength in the foot.  Was PT a major part of that, or do you think it was just time?

4 responses so far

4 Responses to “Dead fish”

  1. dennison 19 May 2008 at 8:33 am 1

    eriedutchgirl -

    My foot started to feel more useful after I had been FWB in boot for 2 - 3 weeks. You’ll find that as you start to bear more weight, you’ll regain your strength gradually.
    My protocol was boots until beginning of week 9, and that was a pretty aggressive protocol compared to everyone else on this site.

    Be very careful and stick to your doctor’s protocol. The chances of re-rupture is low, but it’s higher during the transition period from FWB in boot to two-shoes.

    By the way, I made an appointment with a massage therapist for an orthopedic and therapeutic massage tomorrow. It was actually more difficult than I had anticipated in finding a massage therapist who would do the orthopedic massage around the area.

    Thanks for the information about the massage!

  2. eriedutchgirlon 19 May 2008 at 8:45 am 2

    Thanks for the advice. I know I need to be patient… It’s good for me to hear my ATR compadres tell me so. Thanks.

    And I think that like PT and your Ortho, massage therapists have different ideas about what is and is not ok to touch and manipulate. And many simply don’t have experience with the achilles tendon and don’t want to mess around with it. I’m very lucky as one of my closest friends is a highly skilled therapist and also a big believer in the importance of moving those muscles and tendons to keep them supple. I’m sure many therapists have a different ideology.

    My advice, and what my therapist June did, is to have your good leg done first, so that both you and the therapist can get a gauge on what it SHOULD feel like, and can feel the differences. June said she could actually feel the sutures. Cool. Be very vocal, have a running dialogue as much as you can (ie, “that pressure is just right,” “this area is a lot more tender,” “does this part feel tight to you? it does to me…”). Massages are only as good as your feedback.

    She worked gently but firmly on the tendon and did some myofacial work on the scar. Also stretched my toes and foot and arch. Felt so loose and normal after. Hope your experience is just as good!

  3. Jenon 26 May 2008 at 10:54 pm 3

    Hi eriedutchgirl,
    Thank you for the best laugh I have had in 4 weeks - I can totally relate to the “clean cotton sock”, and shuffling around without the boot on, feeling like I am totally cheating, and gambling with the integrity of my tendon! I take my boot off 3-4 times a day just to let my dead fish breathe. I can’t get over how tight my calf and achilles tendon are. At this point I can’t imagine ever being able to put my foot flat on the floor again. I hope PT helps, because my calf/tendon feels about 6 inches too short!
    Thanks again for the laugh :-)

  4. eriedutchgirlon 27 May 2008 at 11:01 am 4


    My pleasure. Came back and read my entry when I read your comment, and the good news is that at nearly 7 wks post op, I can say that my foot feel stronger than it did when I wrote this. I can’t believe, in fact, that I wrote this only a week ago, because the “dead fish” has come slowly to life over the last week.

    This really is an injury that is best measured week to week, kind of like dieting. No point in getting on the scale every day. If you check once a week, I feel certain you will see improvement. And man, once you’re off crutches, it’s mostly a mental game of staying focused on recovery. Sorry we’re in this boat, but glad we’re in it together! Here’s to the dead fish breathing again!

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