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two days to go!

April 6th, 2013 by evahsmum

So, I’m sitting here resting a little bit before I take on the final clean through of my house and the rest of my day.  I want to have everything in shape by the end of the day today so that tomorrow I can relax and enjoy my last day pre-op with family and friends.

And, yes… I’m getting a little nervous at this point and have a little anxiety about the whole thing. I have a lot of peace though, knowing that it’s all in God’s hands and there will be so many people praying for me during and after surgery.  I am looking forward to being on a road to recovery, not just existing and trying to make it through until surgery anymore.

On the technical side… I have quite extensive atrophy of the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles bilaterally (right more than left) and my quads are even weak from being casted and trying to be off my feet so much. My brother in law is coming over today to raise my very low couch for me, so I can get out of it after surgery with less risk of losing my balance and falling.  I’ve been going cast-less around the house the last few weeks and have done a few short outings (that don’t involve any walking around) with out them as well. It’s… different.  I’m slightly concerned about the skin on my right foot going into surgery, but time will tell how it will handle all this. (I sliced up the bottom of my right foot very bad in my teens and the skin hasn’t been good ever since).

I will try to post once more before surgery, but if I don’t… I’ll see you all on the other side! :)

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only a few more days now :) :(

April 5th, 2013 by evahsmum

Well.. I’m officially three days away from my fourth surgery as of midnight…. why am I still up? I can’t sleep of course, the weather has changed and my heels are encompassed with this gnawing feeling and my tendons are sharp paining and pain meds seem to be pointless and useless. I still want to beg those around me to just cut my feet off, but I think I’ll make it three days.  I’m thinking at some point during my right foot recovery my left foot (which is undoubtedly going to get worse FAST once it’s my only foot) is gonna take over as my main source of discomfort.  That’s gonna be a weird switch for me, since my right foot has been my “achilles heel” (pun? yes.) for so many years.

Well, I’ve got my house about as wheelchair friendly as it’s gonna get. My dog and child, sadly, are not very wheelchair friendly. Here’s hoping I don’t break either of their feetz with my wheels lol.  I continue to be amazed and in awe while watching the love and support the Lord pours out on my child and I through this whole thing. The wonderful people He has brought into our lives and has poured out through them… It truly is amazing <3

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Well now… that was dumb….

March 20th, 2013 by evahsmum

So now that I’m off work, I’m busy getting all the stuff done that I didn’t have time for before surgery.  Have you ever noticed that closet cleaning can quickly destroy your entire house? Yes… I did that Monday.  Fun fun..

Also, by Monday night, after being trapped inside all day due to freezing rain, my three year old was climbing the walls.  I decided to throw on an exercise vid to help her burn off some energy before bed. Well.. of course, she wanted me to do it with her. I did a VERY modified/handicapped version of the DVD, using mostly only my arms.  Turns out I’m an idiot.  I gave myself a nice little additional tear on the right side and I’ve been paying for it since.

New Tear, Mar 18/13, courtesy of

I honestly struggle with being sedentary.  After losing 120lbs, sitting around is hard… I feel like I’m getting floppy. Bleh. And having TWO of these stupid feet, makes it that much more challenging cuz I know it won’t be until after the second surgery that I can start moving again!!

The swelling was so bad last night I kept losing the feeling on the inside of my big toes :(

Right foot

Left foot

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waving the white flag…

March 14th, 2013 by evahsmum

I hit a wall Monday… I just realized that I can’t do this anymore.

I saw my NP (nurse practitioner) last Friday to discuss pain management. She prescribed Arthrotech and wanted me to give it a two week try… take the meds and try to keep working.  Between starting the meds Friday afternoon and monday morning, I only worked two hours and did a whole lotta nothing over the weekend….. I was in utter agony from Monday morning on. Ugh. I cried between gagging from pain all the way to work Monday and Tuesday. I gagged while treating clients… even once while interviewing a client (getting case history). Embarrassing! !!!

So… I’m done working until after I’m healed up from both surgeries now. My poor left leg can’t go from being in an air cast all the time (so I can stand to work on my feet all day) to being my only foot to support my right leg through recovery.  I’ve got just over three weeks so build a little bit of muscle  in my left leg since it’s extremely weak right now, but I can’t do much since it’s just as injured as my right foot.  Thinking NWB calf raises and knee extensions to start with.

I go tomorrow to Chatham to get my Pre Admission done. Hopefully, I’ll have some more info to go on for planning post op at that time.  Right now just praying that everything goes great during surgery and with recovery!

Cheers & blessings!

PS. How do I include photos in a post? I did all that I thought one should do to accomplish this(clicked the add media star thingy and went through all that business) but they still don’t show up in the preview of this post?? Thanks!!!

Figured it out! Thanks!!!


LEFT

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I feel 900 some days!

March 3rd, 2013 by evahsmum

My story is a long one… It started at 11 (which feels like 94,642 years ago, but it was only 22 years ago…) I started having issues walking more than about 10 mins at a time. After two years of “investigating” (and 16 sprain strains) they decided I was a young girl coming into her teens looking for attention and that my mom should’ve been seeking a psychiatrist for me, not an orthopedic surgeon (Really??!?! lol) So.. she packed a cooler, grabbed a book and parked herself in the surgeon’s office and told them she wasn’t leaving until they figured out why I couldn’t walk. That day I had 75 X-rays, a CT scan, an MRI and another CT scan. On the MRI a “shadow” showed up and they discovered the issue, confirmed it with the second CT scan.  I had a massive accessory bone between my talus and calcaneous in BOTH feet.  The following 4 years included three surgeries and soooo many casts.. urgh. In the end, I was left with both subtalar joints fused, and metal in both ankles to stabilize my joints.

I felt blessed I could walk…. It felt amazing! The next 10 years went great. I worked, attended college and became a RMT (registered massage therapist). In 2007 (27 yrs old) I huge bump appeared on the dorsal aspect of  my right foot. Chiro thought I sprained it or possible joint effusion… X-Rays revealed osteoarthritis in a few joints and a nice bone spur. Happy birthday me?? :(

In 2009, after having my child, I started having a lot of hind foot pain, which like a new mom, I promptly ignored and denied it was happening lol. Being in the medical field, I could feel the scarring in my Achilles growing and knew what was happening. The first notch appeared in my right Achilles at the beginning of 2010. I knew something needed to be done, but I was going through a tough divorce with an infant and I didn’t have the time or energy to put myself first.  By the time I did seek medical help for it, I had three notches in the right Achilles and one in the left.  My GP’s fix for the issue was lose weight. So I did. A LOT of weight. It didn’t help.  His next suggestion was that I should wear hiking boots….???!?!?! Again… seriously dude?? I saw him for this pain four times and he said “your feet are a complicated situation, just leave them alone… it’s best not to touch them.”

Last February one of my patients saw the pain I was in, and she happened to be a nurse for a ortho that specialized in feet and ankles. She told him about my troubles and he was excited to see me.  I took his info to my GP and begged for a referral… in tears… and finally got it! I saw the ortho, Hundt, in May and he put me in a cast within minutes of looking at my Achilles.  He said I have insertional tendinitis and tendonosis as well in the tendon body. We decided to try casting the right one first to see if it would heal. After 12 weeks…. no luck, and I was rewarded with a new notch in my left Achilles and my insertion got wayyyyyy worse too. While in the cast we did Physio, ultrasound, laser, massage, acupuncture and IFC.  He also had me try Shock wave therapy after the casting with a podiatrist in town  (Extra corporeal shock wave therapy). After two sessions I was in a state of hyper-inflammation and couldn’t even walk and he said “you’re done… outta options.”  The  MRI in October revealed a bone spur that is cutting through my Achilles and that most of the tendon body is 100% scar tissue from tearing and healing and tearing and healing.  The insertion is frayed and tearing off the bone too.  While I’ve never completely ruptured either of my Achilles, they’ve torn hundreds of times.  My surgery was scheduled for May 24/13 (welcome to canada… that’s actually not long of a wait here lol).

Last October, I was at the point that I couldn’t wear full shoes.  I actually wore sandals until the first week of December :P not easy up here!!!  I work on my feet.. there’s no way around that sadly.  In the time since surgery was scheduled, I’ve gone from working 44-48 hrs a week to working 24 hrs in  TWO air casts because I can’t even walk to the bathroom without crazy stupid mind numbing pain. I’m exhausted, I feel dumb from pain. I’m emotionally spent and completely worn down.  Praise God, they informed me last week they were able to bump my first surgery (right foot) up to April 8th! Finally.. a light at the end of this tunnel.

I have done lots of reading on line and never found anyone with my specific issue…. I am more than anxious to see if there is someone in this community with bilateral subtalar fusions that resulted in future Achilles issues. My surgeon says the two conditions are unrelated, but i have my suspicions!!!!

Well… really looking forward to getting on to a path of healing and getting to know some of you along the way… Lord knows I’m gonna have boat loads of time on my hands pretty soon!!!

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  • ATR Timeline

    • Name: evahsmum
      Location: Chatham
      Injured during: life!? Possibly caused by bilat. Subtalar Fusion
      Which Leg: B
      Status: NWB

      257 wks  3 days Post-ATR
      211 wks  3 days
         Since start of treatment
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