Archive for March, 2012
Here I am just over 4 weeks post op, my foot seems to be okay and is feeling more and more like my foot again. I don’t really have too much pain although it does swell up during my day at work but soon goes back down in the evening. I have been doing ROM exercises 3 or 4 times a day just to flex my foot ‘not into pain’ as my physio stated, it feels good and works well in the morning, not so well in the evening.
For all those out there who have been here before a question:
I can move my foot up to about 15 degrees (flexed down) through to around 35 degrees (flexed down). Getting to this point was easy but now I feel I am at a bit of a wall. I am not concerned as time is on my side but how quickly do people find their ROM returns from this point on, and what do they find helps it along the path to normal. I should state that I am not a very flexible person anyway, my good foot only flexes to about 10 degrees upwards so that is my goal.
I have physio this Tuesday, am hoping to lose a wedge from the boot and get some more weight over to my bad leg, both these things are listed on my protocol, although feel I will need to lose another wedge or two before I can FWB on my leg and walk okay. I have experimented with some more weight, feels okay apart from my 3″ heel!
Happy healing to all and hope all had a nice weekend. I had a nice few hours out and about at a local National Trust property, sat in the sun (22C here today) in the wonderful garden and watched my kids run around. I wanted to run with them but that might be some way off. I must say though that getting out and about felt great and watching the world go by was good enough for me!
March 25th, 2012
My boot and I are quite close these days, he follows me round everywhere, and I mean everywhere. Bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, work…. I am allowed to be separated a few times a day to do some ROM exercises, but I never let him out of my sight.
The ankle is starting to free up a bit now, I can’t get back to neutral yet, put the swelling has gone down a bit and my foot is starting to feel like it is attached to my body again now. I am back to work during the week, chained to my desk. Even going to the copier seems like a hassle but my workmates are very helpful, they fetch me a coffee, give me a lift to/from work and keep up the banter to keep me cheerful, all small things but right now they help a lot.
A few things have bothered me but they don’t seem to be anything major:
- Heel pain, for the first 4 nights in my boot my heel felt like someone was putting knitting needles in it, that has eased a bit now.
- Sometimes my foot swells a bit at night, this causes major pins and needles in my toes, real painful. I have now learnt that letting air out of my aircast boot fixes this. It feels like nerve pain but I think is just where the boot goes tight.
- The wound was tight to start with, this has eased a bit now.
- When I talk to people they are unable to get their head around the recovery timescale, people arrange stuff for me or suggest things that are just not possible for me to do at that time.
My physio seems nice and is confident we will do okay getting me back on my feet again. I am allowed to PWB and next appointment is in just over one week to check progress. Then I will be 4.5 weeks post op. If it helps for anyone reading this who has just torn their AT the time is going quite quickly, although my wife assures me it is going very slowly! I miss my car and my bike and my children are wondering why my foot is not fixed yet.
Happy healing to all!
March 18th, 2012
So, I had my first physio appointment today, 45 minutes this morning at my smaller local hospital in Wimborne. It was interesting and I am assured it went well by my PT. She started by taking my history of the injury, how it occurred, the operation, any niggles I had and what my goal was, she had a copy of my protocol issued by the hospital and felt it was reasonable.
We had an interesting discussion on protocols, apparently Poole NHS had been trialing the Vacoped boot 6 months ago for ATR treatment, all the PT’s had some training but there was a supply issue with the boot so they went back to Aircast and the protocol I am on, still quite forward thinking in her opinion but with a fixed boot.
Boot off, my natural position for my injured foot has become 35 degrees flexed, I can move it at present to 25 degrees flexed. My good foot moves just past 0 degrees (I am not very flexible) so that is my eventual goal with my ATR foot. My foot is still a bit swollen and is bruised.
We embarked on some exercises and I am to take my boot off and do the exercises 4 times / day as follows:
- 10 x Foot flex from 35 to 25 degrees or as comfort allows while sat on the end of the bed.
- 10 x Foot flex from 35 to 25 degrees or as comfort allows while lying on my front with my leg raised 90 degrees.
- 10 x Foot flex with toes on floor lowering my heal to the floor to 25 degrees or as comfort allows (I like this one, it feels more controlled and ’safe’ to do).
- Wiggle toes to get some circulation and just relax with the boot off.
Then, put boot back on (still 5 wedges, these start coming out at week 4 or 5 post op). I am then to lift my toes into the top of the boot, push them down and put the boot against a solid object left and right and push my foot left and right, again, 10x for each action, gentle.
I am also allowed to PWB with crutches in the boot at this stage while walking, initially at a grape squashing pressure over this weekend into next week, perhaps moving to larger fruit over time! This is also allowed while standing still. PT advised me to listen to my foot, if it feels tired and swells a bit, back off for a while. I have another PT scheduled for Monday so she can review my thoughts on initial exercises and set me up for next week and weekend.
Thoughts right now are:
- It scares me to take it out of the boot and move it but my PT says it is ‘designed to move’ and early movement will help circulation and healing of the tendon (blood supply).
- Moving it scares me, my brain no longer seems connected to my foot, my free movements are hard, my brain is trying but my foot is listening to an IPod or something else, not my brain.
- I am pleased to be making progress but am happy to stick to the protocol suggested, things seem to be flying along all of a sudden and I want to feel in control.
Sorry to ramble but thought I would be thorough for anyone reading this in the future and going through the same thing!
Wishing everyone a good weekend, I have no big plans!
March 9th, 2012
So, yesterday I was 12 days after my surgery and had my follow up appointment at Poole Hospital. I arrived 20 minutes early (keen to progress) and was called in straight away. I have got to say that so far Poole NHS Hospital has been great in every way, fast, efficient and friendly. So, they cut my substantial cast off to reveal my little leg and ankle. I had a 3 inch scar up the back of my heal, stapled together, the wound apparently looked to have healed very well, keeping it elevated at all times seems to have done its job. Staples removed and the consultant came for a look. He was happy, said it looked great and that he would see me again in 6 weeks to see how I am doing with physio which I start tomorrow.
Off to the plaster room next where they issued my with an Aircast Boot, 5 (yes, count them) heal wedges, a pump, some instructions and a hygiene cover for bed time. Overall it is heavier than I imagined and I think my foot is more downward flexed than it was in the cast, this hurts the upper part of my foot a bit (I am not very flexible) so I will discuss this with my physio tomorrow and see if we can make it more comfortable. The swelling has stopped a bit now, I think the boot helps with that.
So, physio tomorrow, back to the office Monday (I have missed work), will keep posting progress.
March 8th, 2012