Consultant Appointment: 20 April 2016

Firstly, it is nice to have received such positive comments from other ATR victims.  I take on board all the messages.

Well yesterday was my appointment with the consultant, normal procedure - fracture clinic, remove cast, up to Ultrasound, scan, back down to fracture clinic, discuss surgery or non-surgery options then, what should have been a re-cast of my left leg.

However, things are never that straight forward.  First off the ultrasound dept. were saying an ‘Urgent’ scan meant a 3-4 week wait.  Cue a trip back down to the consultant who rang through the urgency of the matter and with a bit of internal politics at the hospital we were actually dealt with as an urgent case.

The wait for an Ultrasound was about an hour but when I was seen it was confirmed that I had an 8mm full rupture of my left Achilles’ tendon.  No miraculous news of it’s just “a really badly sprained ankle”.  I was kidding myself as with what I’d read on the internet when you hear that elusive “Pop” you can bet your bottom dollar that it’s gonna be your Achilles.

What I hadn’t counted for was the additional news.  I have been suffering with an acute pain at the top of my left calf just behind the knee.  I thought it was just a muscle ache where I have been holding my leg whilst on the crutches.  No such luck……a DVT, or blood clot to keep things simple.

So, back down to the consultant at which point I thought I’d be getting a new plaster cast back on (something for my girls to paint) but no, with the blood clot he said that the plaster is too tight and I’d have to go straight into the Robocop boot for 4 weeks with the 3 wedges in the heal.  The first, I think, comes out at the 4th week and then another at 2 week intervals.  I was then taken round to the ACU to have blood tests and have been put on blood thinning medication to sort the clot.  What was amusing was the consultant came round with me and was told it was a 6 hour maximum wait.  Apparently my risk of pulmonary embolism was low but nevertheless they did bump me up the list….god bless the NHS for having common sense, some of the time.

Now I was wavering on surgery or non-surgery.  I was told that one of the orthopaedic consultants had opted for non-surgery and if he’s an expert in the field then you have to give some thought to that.  However, the clot pretty much made the decision for non-surgery…..not sure they want someone on blood thinners on the surgery table!

So, I have an appointment booked for 4 weeks time; a line in the sand and a horizon in the relative short distance.  Having goals certainly helps the mental side of things.  I will continue with my upper body weights as I don’t want to turn into a fat dad!

I feel like seeing the consultant has brought everything into focus.  I’m not going to wallow in self pity.  I have a family holiday to France mid-August.  My goal is to be confidently walking, swimming and playing with the kids by then.  More than enough time.


p.s. I have tickets to take my son to see Watford v Crystal Palace at Wembley this Sunday.  I had lined up his god father to take him but it’s an experience I wanted to share with the lad.  It’s his home town team playing (Watford, I’m a Brighton fan) and his first experience of Wembley stadium.  It appears that Wembley have great access and assistance in getting to the ground from Wembley tube so I think I’m going to go for it.   I’ve got 3 days to rest up before then.  Here’s hoping for the right result on the day⚽️⚽️⚽️

3 comments April 21, 2016


Well, I’m not sure where to start.

I ruptured my Achilles’ tendon last week, whilst on holiday with my family in Portugal. Not the souvenir I was looking for!

Before Monday, the most I knew about Achilles was the legend and the not so great film (IMO) starring Mr Pitt.

Since the injury the wife and I have trawled the information-super-highway for info on the injury, recovery, surgery Vs non-surgery etc etc. I’ve always returned to this website and as a way of helping me on my way to recovery I thought I would start my own Blog.

Just going back a little to last Monday 11th April 2016, I was playing a very friendly game of football with the other Dad’s and children at the resort we were staying at in Portugal. Nothing too strenuous, just a gentle kick-about. The day before I had been for a run which did include a couple steep inclines. I’m 37 and attend the gym 3-4 times a week, run regularly (I’ve run the London Marathon, 10k distances etc) and quite frankly consider myself in reasonable knick. In my mind it was the 4k run I completed the day before that caused the injury. I’m certainly not used to hill running and I have seen keep on various websites that running up hills can put indue stress on the calf and Achilles. Anyway, I’ll never really know, maybe it’s just my age and wear and tear taking hold :-)

Anyhow, I remember the moment very clearly.  I was walking, went to move off on my left leg and heard a loud “pop”.  I thought someone had clipped my ankles, but there was no one near me!  Fortunately there was a guy called Wayne, who had worked for St Johns Ambulance.  He got me sorted out, checked range of motion (pretty good) iced the ankle, raised it and got some first-aid bandages to wrap my ankle for support.

I returned to the UK on Thursday 14th.  I don’t think the flight helped as my whole leg had swollen up.  Whilst I went work on the Friday I was hobbling about and that evening decided that A&E beckoned the following morning (Watford A&E on a Friday night = hours and hours of waiting).

Thompson test the following morning confirmed my fears and I have a follow-up appointment tomorrow morning with the consultant.  I’m currently in my first plaster cast and am NWB on my left leg.  I hate it. Emotionally and mentally I’m not in a very good place.

I went into work yesterday (commute to London Euston, crutches to office).  I can honestly say that I have never felt so emotionally and physically drained as I did after I made the trip on crutches, which normally takes me less than 10 minutes to walk.  I dreaded the journey back and by the time I got back to Watford, where my wife picked me up at the station, I was a sweating emotional wreck.

Today I called in sick ( they know the reason) and have chilled out.  I’m hoping for good news tomorrow morning…..not sure what that entails or means, like I want them to say “this is the smallest rupture we’ve ever seen, you’ll be back on your feet and in the gym in a few weeks”…..who knows, small miracles.

I appreciate this is a long first post but I’ve never done a Blog before.  I’ll update tomorrow after I’ve seen the consultant ….. Who knows, maybe I’ll get that miracle news.

7 comments April 19, 2016

Hello world!

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Add comment April 18, 2016