Nearly Six months post-op and Still not there yet

To recap:  I had surgery on March 6th, 2013 for a Haglund’s deformity that had ruptured my achilles.  I had doctored with my family doctor for 6 months hoping that my achilles pain would subside.  She sent me ortho dr number one.  I doctored with this doctor for nearly 9 months trying heel cups, orthotics, physical therapy, stretching, steroid patches, etc.  He was hesitant to do surgery because he said it would be a major surgery, and recovery would be lengthy (he was right)

So on to doctor number three.  He said I needed surgery immediately.  Scheduled surgery for January 2, 2013, but then came down with not one, but two flaming cases of the shingles.  I thought I was going to die.  In the meantime, my achilles ruptured.  Surgery was much more complicated than the doctor or I had imagined.  I had two bone spurs removed, the achilles was dug out of my calf, trimmed off with a clean end, and attached to my heel bone with anchors.  I missed 2 1/2 months of my teaching job.  I was hoping that I would recover during the summer and be all better by the time school started up this fall.

Guess what?  School started yesterday and I am still in this flipping boot.  I still have A LOT of pain on the outside of my foot through my peroneal tendon.  I also have some pretty good pain on the back of my heel up my achilles. Sometimes I also have this horrible, stabbing pain in the bottom of my heel.  The pain can happen at any time, even while I am at rest and sitting.   I have been going to physical therapy 3 times a week since late April.  I have been back to the surgeon about 7 times since the surgery.  He did give me a Medrol dose pack in July which helped for a couple of weeks, but then back to a lot of pain.

I am at my wit’s end.  I am tired of the pain, and in the meantime, I have a really sore shoulder that has been tentatively diagnosed as a rotator cuff tear.  And, my “good foot” has a bone spur coming on fast and furious that is really beginning to hurt.

I did go to a different physical therapist this week.  I really, really love the people that I’ve been going to, but I am not getting any better.  The new physical therapist is in a private practice, and doesn’t have a lot of equipment, but she uses her head and her hands.  She has tried a few new things and I have a lot more motion that I have been having.  She does a lot of hands on and massage, which is something that I haven’t had a lot of.

I go back to the surgeon this week.  He mentioned last time that he would give me another Medrol dosepack and perhaps a cortisone shot in the heel.  I am not real wild about the shot in the heel.  Has anyone ever had one of those?  Did it work?  My second doctor told me that he could do a cortisone shot in the heel/achilles but it was dangerous and may lead to a tendon rupture.  I’ve already been there; don’t really want to go there again !!

The last several times I’ve been back to the surgeon I’ve asked for another MRi, but they haven’t obliged.  They did do more x-rays last month when I went.  The doctor showed me the x-rays and compared then to the ones before surgery.  I honestly didn’t see any difference in them other than the dots that were the anchors in the heel.

Any ideas/suggestions?  I feel my back is against the wall.  I have searched around for another practice that has orthopedic surgeons, but the nearest would be about four hours from my home.  I was just hoping this one would work out, but I am just not getting any better.

Good luck to the rest of you with your recovery.  Hopefully it won’t be as long and drawn out as mine.

3 Responses to “Nearly Six months post-op and Still not there yet”

  1. Hi Kelliblew,
    Read my blog on debuff to see I have a very similar story from 2001 to this April. The burning in your heel is plantar faciata. I bought a different boot shell that keeps my foot flexed over night. I have to really work at heel lifts and calf stretches. My orthodox surgeon said he could give me a shot in my heel, but I said I wanted to see if stretching would resolve the problem. I don’t have the heel burn now after about a month sleeping in the flex boot. I got it from Amazon for about $18. I have a Kodiak cold therapy machine that I use every evening for a couple hours to reduce the swelling. I retired from my full time teaching position and now only teach one college class a week one night a week. Good luck and hope you feel better soon.

  2. My little tablet changes the spelling of word without my help so it changed your name and orthosurgeon. Annoying! But anyway, hope you find relief soon.

  3. Hi Kelliblw, so sorry to hear of your frustration and the prolonging of surgery. I have been “healing” in a boot since May, have partial tear(s) in AT, heel spur and plantar fasciitis. Am non-op right now and anticipating at least 3 more months of NWB during the day and the flex boot at night. Am going to PT 2x a week were they do tissue manipulation and massage, ultrasound and sten therapy. My doc is leaving surgery option open, am torn about having it and going through the long recovery OR not having it, going through long recovery and possibly rupturing it anyway…..

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