Day 1: A World of Hurt

October 30th, 2018

I was great in the morning. No pain, had slept through the night with my foot elevated. So I got up. I was use to the crutches by now as I had had 4 days prior to the surgery to adjust to the god awful misery of them.

I felt a little like a had been run over with, not a truck, but maybe a scooter? Not too bad and the nerve block was still in effect. They sent me home with hydrocodone, two different laxatives (because, you know that condone really stops you up) and a blood thinner for blood clots. I didn’t actually end up picking up the thinner from the pharmacist since it was way too expensive (like $450.00 after insurance!) but used aspirin on a daily basis instead, which my doctor said was fine.

Husband said he needs to run to the office, just for an hour and then he’d be back home. Sure, hon…go, go. I’m aces! The nerve block starts to wear off around 11:00. Not too bad yet. Maybe I can get by on just Tylenol. Ooooo…okay, now it’s a little worse. Oh boy. I better pop a hydrocodone. Why is it not working? Oh god. My pain is at a 9 out of 10. Can I take two? I better not.

For the better part of the first day I was at a pain level of either 8 or 9 until the evening hours. Every 4 hours I popped another hydrocodone to no avail. It didn’t really touch the pain. Occasionally I would be at a level 6 or 7 but then it would ramp back up. It seems like I didn’t really get a constant level of pain management until it built up in my system.

I took the pain meds the rest of that evening and maybe one or two in the morning of the second day, but from then on I was okay on just Tylenol.

Other people have said it on here, so I will just reiterate. Do not wait until the nerve block wears off to start taking the pain medication. Just don’t. Don’t do it, You’ll regret it.

Also, elevate. Toes above nose people.

Surgery Day

October 30th, 2018

I’m doing some of these posts more for me to remember than for anything else. I want to be able to look back at these a year from now, fully healed (hopefully) and remember how far I’ve come.

Surgery day was Wednesday October 10th. It was scheduled for 2:00 but I don’t think I actually got into the OR until 4:00pm or so.

I’ve never had surgery (except for wisdom teeth out) of any kind or have even been in a hospital for anything, so it was a new experience for me. I was really scared, like stupid scared, and I was lucky to have my husband there with me talking me down the whole time. Someone else’s blog (I think Dennis) mentioned that he went through surgery day alone and if he had to do it again, would have someone with him. Totally agree. I can’t imagine managing this day alone.

There were lots of questions and going over medical history. They started an IV line. I met with the anesthesiaologist and he covered what he was going to do. I would be given a nerve block which would wear off in the vicinity of 12 hours. They would also put me under general anesthesia so I would be unconscious for the procedure. This is the part I was most nervous about. I don’t know why, but it freaked me out.

They gave me some kind of drug in my IV line to help me relax…which it really did. Then they wheeled me over to the nerve block room, did an ultrasound to find the right nerves and administered the block. Yep. That worked. Can’t feel my lower leg, but that’s okay because I was on sleepy/mellow IV drug. My doctor stopped by for a chat to go over the procedure.

Doctor: “I didn’t think I’d see you so soon. I thought you were going to think some more about having the procedure done”.

*chuckle*

Me: “I was. I literally just saw you two days ago”

Doctor: “Well I meant to tell you that there is a small chance of rupturing your Achilles with the haglund’s deformity. Guess you were one of the lucky ones.”

Me: “I’m honored”

After a bit, they wheeled me into the OR where I saw the anesthesiologist and my doctor…..and that is the last I remember.

I woke up about 2 hours later in the recovery area. My leg was in a cast and I was a little groggy, but I didn’t have any pain. That comes later. I waited about an hour and they released me to go home. I got to sleep in my own bed and sleep soundly through the night without pain.

Overall, except the nerve wracking-ness of the whole day everything went smoothly and it was an easier ordeal than I though it would be.

But the next day….

Trail Running With the Dog

October 29th, 2018

So to begin with, my achilles tendon has been giving me grief for about three years. I’ve had achilles tendonitis for that whole time and eventually a Haglund’s deformity appeared on the back of my heel. It was huge, like golfball size huge. Maybe not quite that big but it seemed like it. Anyway, I did all the usual treatments you do for tendonitis: ice, rest, anti-inflammatory medication, exercises, physical therapy, needling, cupping. Anything and everything in multiple combinations. Even some crackpot home treatments. For the most part, I just did my usual workouts (running, hiking, yoga, gym) and muscled through the pain, ignoring it the best I could. Until the past 6 months.

For the past six months it started to become unbearable, to the point where I was limping everywhere. I became a chore just to walk through the grocery store or across a parking lot. I knew eventually I would have to have the dreaded surgery but I kept putting it off. I was trying to find a convenient time of the year where it would have the least impact on everyone.

I made an appointment with the orthopedist on October 3rd to discuss the options. We met and chatted and he said yes, based on the xray you have a Haglund’s deformity that needs to be shaved down. It will eventually need to be done. He said we can try and postpone it a little longer by doing some more physical therapy and wearing a boot for a couple of weeks, but he didn’t have high hopes. So I left, knowing I’d have to schedule the surgery sooner rather than latter.

Friday, October 5th was still kind of hot here in the South, but it was starting to get that edge of fall feeling to it. Perfect day to take the dog Penny for a trail run. And that was it. Halfway through the run I came down wrong on a rock or a tree root and SNAP! The most excruciating pain ever. I knew immediately what had happened. I writhed in pain on the trail for a good 15 minutes before I even began to figure out how the hell I was going to get back to my car. I was in the middle of nowhere. So I fashioned a makeshift crutch from a big tree branch and slowly, with the dog, limped to the nearest trailhead. From there, I called my husband.

We went to the ER. Doctor examined me and deduced what I already kind of knew…ruptured achilles. So he gave me a set of crutches, a boot and set me up for an MRI on Sunday. Results of the MRI were that my achilles was hanging on by the thinest of threads. Let’s schedule surgery for Wednsday the 10th! And so we did.

    About
    I’m a 48 year old gal that loves to run, hike with my dog and do yoga. I am constantly on the go and have a hard time sitting still. This injury is slowly killing me.
    • junebug has completed the grueling 26.2 ATR miles to full recovery!
      Goal: 365 days from the surgery date.
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