12 Weeks! Good news/bad news

Today I’m at 12 weeks - and have mostly progressed since my post last week!  The good news: I’m walking better, am much stronger, and have gained some dorsiflexion.  The bad news:  I’m much more swollen, still have a large adhesion (or just dent) near the top of my scar, and still feel really tight after much walking.  Here are the pics of the swelling and DF against the wall.  Compared to my last post, there’s quite a difference in both.

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The swelling is worst at the rear of my outside ankle bone.  My AT is sore when I take larger strides and sometimes pulls painfully at the heel or higher if I try to go too fast.

My balance is getting better on my injured foot as the PT has me doing leg lifts to the front, side, and rear while standing on the foot.  This forces all the associated muscles to tighten in my injured foot/ankle to hold me in balance.  This week, the PT added leg presses and hamstring curls.  I don’t like the latter as it puts a lot of pressure on my AT - but my hamstring is really weak.

He’s also introduced this tool - which I really like:

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You put it around both legs and do the above leg lifts and it really helps at the hip/hamstring area.  I also used it on my arms for flies, etc., since my hands still bother me occasionally from the weeks on crutches.  I’m continuing with the theraband exercises and seated calf raises.  I need some extra weight - should I put a book on my leg?  Trying to get creative at home.

The PT really (painfully) worked the suction cups on my scar and I lost several adhesions.  The big dent isn’t going anywhere and it might just be the way the tendon was sewn together. :(

I don’t think I’m walking enough as I’ve kind of gotten used to my invalid outpost and working from my chair. Not good.  But the more I walk, the more I get set back with swelling - there seems to be a fine line there and I haven’t found it.  I still can’t do two leg calf raises without a lot of pain, so haven’t pursued them yet.  I think I need to work up the ladder with maybe some weights on the seated calf raises?  Still going down the stairs backwards when carrying stuff, but can go down forward with my injured foot half over the edge if I’m walking hands free. (not sufficient DF to reach the next stair with the good foot.)

The trend is forward, but I have some really tight AT, limpy, discouraging days.  On those days,  I look back at my own blog and see how far I’ve come - and that gets rid of any blues!!  Praying for all of you who are still in those early days.  It’s gets better fast - starting at week 4. :)  Blessings, Kim

11 Responses to “12 Weeks! Good news/bad news”

  1. Nice progress there, knee is nearly at the wall now…. go Kim!! :)

    Book(s) on the leg while doing seated calf raises is a good idea to add some more resistance.

    As for that ‘dent’ I am sure it’s just a matter of time before it gives itself up :)

    Happy healing :)

  2. Hi Kim

    You do like your new tools don’t you? Me too, and when they work well it’s a bonus.

    I’m coming up to 21 weeks now and the swelling didn’t really start until about week 12 by which time I was getting very mobile and doing more exercise, including different stretches, walking lots and static bike. The more I did, the more swelling I had, including outside ankle bone too.

    I discussed this with my GP and my sports physio who were not especially concerned, telling me that this could continue through much of my recovery, even up to 12 months. The short term remedy was alternating hot water/ice water bathing (hurts a little but is great afterwards); and going back to the compression bandage or sock. And I’ve upped the exercise a lot - has caused me some aches but condition improving fast.

    I think that your PT would have told you about any serious issues.

  3. one step at a time and your right you have come a long way.
    I bet once the scar releases your swelling will go down.
    Good Luck

  4. Hillie - you’re right - getting new tools is like kids getting stickers for good behavior at the doctor, lol! Now I’m interested in doryt’s “foam roller.” I wonder if it really works well…:)

    I’ve started icing again and hot baths. But the baths are inconvenient (after I’ve already showered) I’d rather just soak it in a bucket. What do you use? I couldn’t use the CEP socks as they wouldn’t go over my foot. I think I need to try something less compressing at first.

    Eggster - thanks! I’m going to try the book at my pm PT session. Old Lady - the swelling in the leg starts right above that dent - hoping you’re right!

  5. Hi I know I am way behind you… only 3 1/2 weeks post surgery but I have been having Nerological muscle therapy, I started this 4 days after surgery, it is electrical current therapy and this has greatly reduced any swelling and I did not get any bruising from the surgery. I have been getting treatment about 5 times a week and this has helped me greatly. If you can get this type of treatment it is fantastic.

  6. For me, swelling and pain were directly correlated to my activity level. I sort of found a discomfort level I could tolerate- and as I improved, ramped my activity up accordingly. So, for a long long time, my pain and swelling really didn’t get much better. But, I was able to do a whole lot more as time went on.

    Some folks are happier to keep the activity more constant- and look for improvements in comfort and swelling. Kind of a personal choice I suppose, but my guess is that (so long as you don’t terribly over-do things) you’re going to get your strength and agility back faster by pushing it. The trick, of course, is figuring out just how hard to push it :-)

    I’m quickly approaching the 11 month mark, and am still playing that game a bit. I’m sitting here at work, and - to be honest - my Achilles is kind of aching. But, I did a very steep 3500ft mountain bike climb this morning, and am still feeling the effects of Sunday’s 90mi ride with ~7500ft climbing. So, yeah… it hurts, but those are things I probably couldn’t have done 6 months ago.

  7. You’re making great strides Kim!! Great to see you doing better each week. My physiotherapist said that it could take awhile for the swelling to subside as well. I guess it’s one of the great reminders that we really are warriors well after the initial rupture.

  8. ok ryanb - I’ll take a little ache if I can ride like that next year!!

  9. Kimjax:
    Rather than books on your knee, I’d recommend getting a plate-loaded dumbbell and buying weights as you go along. It is easier to balance than books, more measurable and you can get up to some significant weight as you progress. Be sure to put a thick towel between your leg and the dumbbell because the handle will cut into your thigh. I couldn’t be happier with the seated calf raise machine I bought. but you won’t be needing something like that for a while.

  10. Hi Kim

    Good to see your pictures, I think we are at similar stages, my knee to wall is similar to yours, but the back of my heel is a different matter. I got my kids to take a picture of the back of my heels yesterday after seeing yours and it was a bit of a shock. The back of my ankles are really thick! Not just the injured one though - both of them !! Although the injured one is more swollen than the other one, I have never seen such fat looking ankles, they look like a different body part to yours, a bit stump-like! Anyway, the good news is that its all progressing much better than I would have thought. Subconsciously I think I thought I would be on one leg forever, but apparently I’m going to be OK! There’s hope for us all ;-)

  11. Congrats on a great recovery so far Kimjax!

    I’ve used the foam roller in the past (along with trigger point therapy) on some old running injuries and it’s insanely effective so can’t wait to get the approval to try it out on my leg

    My massage therapist also swears that kinesio tape works magic - checked with my PT on that at the first appointment this week and he says it does so also adding that to my try list. keep up the great work!

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