My first post-op visit to my surgeon was supposed to be scheduled 10-12 days after surgery. But, as my luck would have it, that put it smack dab in the middle of his vacation so they got me in at the 8 day mark, Thursday, May 31st at 8:00 am (the first appointment of the day).
Anticipating that he would sign my work release forms that would allow me to return to work the following day, I timed my morning routine to see how much extra time it would take me to get ready. Only about 15 minutes were all that I needed, but, I was completely worn out before I even left the house.
This told me that my morning showers were going to have to switch into evening showers. Everyone at work will just have to get used to me wearing a ponytail every day.
As I boosted myself up on the examination table, the nurse chirped "All ready to get that cast off?"
"Really??" I was stunned. I just assumed that it would be a ‘wiggle your toes - any pain?- looks good’ type of appointment.
After sawing off my lime green cast, it was time to get my stitches out. (Yeah!!!). Well, I thought that they would be stitches, but they turned out to be 19 staples instead.
I must say that the incision running up the back of my leg is quite impressive. As are the black bruises that are on either side of my heel. My foot still appears to be about twice it’s normal size and my ankle has no definition at all. But, the wound is healing and there is no sign of infection.
I was able to wiggle my toes for the doctor and move my foot up and down. I did notice (but didn’t think to mention it) that the bottom of my foot and sides of my heel were completely numb.
Doctor seemed apologetic when he said that he didn’t feel comfortable putting me in a boot after only 8 days. Actually, I wasn’t too keen on the idea either. Although I dislike a hard cast, it feels safer and I do not was to hinder my recovery in any way.
I agonizing over the decision for the new cast color, and finally choose ‘highlighter yellow’ (although ‘construction sign orange’ almost won). I barely got a chance to reacquaint myself with my leg (and scratch it) when in was enclosed in a hard shell at a 90 degree angle to my leg.
My next appointment is on June 18th, and I will get rid of this cast and into a boot.
Part of me was excited to get back to work the next day, but I was not looking forward to dragging myself out of bed. I have noticed that it takes awhile for my entire body to get moving once I have been at rest. At this time, my foot still swells whenever I move it down from an elevated position.
All day Thursday, my foot was cold and tingly. I was worried that the cast was too tight, because it was just plain uncomfortable. I was not liking this new cast (maybe I should have picked orange after all).
That night, I was woken up repeatedly because of calf cramps. I had no was of stretching my leg and foot, so I just had to endure.
I slept very little that night because of the cramps, so when the alarm went off at it’s usual 3:45 am time, I had a hard time getting up.
Yes, I get up every morning at 3:45. My work schedule is 5:00 to 10:00 am. I have done this for almost 15 years and it is my normal, but Friday morning was hard. I felt like an 80 year old wracked with arthritis.
Once my body warmed up, and I made it to work, everything went fine. But, I noticed that every time I stood, my calf would cramp up. Bananas, Gatorade and cauliflower all made it home with me to help prevent this.
It is now Saturday evening, and my leg is still cramping when I stand. I’m not too worried about a blood clot, because I have been on the blood thinner Fragmin every day since surgery.
My cast is no longer tight on my leg, so I have a bit of wiggle room. My arms are not fatigued from the crutches anymore. I have developed wonderful balance while standing on my right leg and lifting my cast-laden left one.
All things considering, things are pretty darn good.