I first injured playing in a basketball tournament May 25, 2015. It was only 5-8 minutes into the game when I was running down the court. There was another player running behind me. I felt her kick me (I actually did get kicked) even though it has been noted that a tear feels like you got kicked. I felt a shock shoot down my foot. I was so pissed, I laid there for a little while and then rolled off the court to ice it. I should have known at the time that it wasn’t good, but it didn’t really hurt. I was able to walk with a little assistance. I iced and elevated it for the day/night. I was able to walk slowly the next couple days while the rest of team played. I went to the doctor once I got back home. She said it was probably just a strain/sprain. No boot or referral to podiatry - I would say based upon this experience to get a referral from the start! I left it at that since I was able to walk with out pain and thought it would heal on its own. Not too smart!
A couple weeks later, it was feeling much better, but went camping with the dog. We walked out of the cabin door and was just about to walk down a short flight of stairs when another do comes walking around the corner and my dog lunged at the other dog pulling me down the stairs. That jarred my achilles to where it really hurt. This was probably where my achilles actually was fully torn, but I unfortunately didn’t go back to the doctor. I wasn’t in pain, was still able to walk and was busy with work, traveling, etc…. Once things settled down a little - almost 3 months later I contacted my primary doctor again because I hadn’t and wasn’t getting any better. She referred me to the podiatrist. As soon as the podiatrist looked at it, she knew it was ruptured - neglected rupture is what she called it. She had another doctor come in to confirm. They basically said I needed surgery to repair it. I went to the cast room to get a boot and to the lab for blood tests to prepare for surgery. I would get contacted for an MRI and to schedule the surgery. I was told I would be out of work for 2 weeks and another 4-8 weeks in a cast mostly NWB. WTF!!!! Especially because it is my right foot, so I can’t drive either. I did need a break from work and have lots of sick time, so everyone was tell me to enjoy it as much as I could - not working that is.
Had my MRI. It was loud and hard to keep still for 4-5 minutes at a time for 30 minutes, but at least it was only my legs that were in the tube. Surgery scheduled for 8/25. Exactly 3 months to the day from the initial injury. I had my pre-op calls to let me know where to go and what to do/not do before the surgery. Was told I had to get an EKG done too. Wish they would have told me that at the beginning when I was told about the other tests and was at the hospital already so I didn’t have to make an extra trip. Tried to get things done at home and work over the weekend before the surgery since I wouldn’t be able to do some things on my own for weeks to months.
Surgery was scheduled for 1:15 pm. Had to arrive at the hospital by 11:15 am. We got there early because I had to pick up some glasses that I had ordered prior. Got those and then went to check-in. The waiting room was pretty crowded with family of someone else who was having surgery. I only had to wait like 10 minutes maybe before they called me in. Got blood pressure taken, EKG and was told about nerve block and asked the same questions a couple of times. I decided to get the nerve block w/ catheter for after the surgery. I wasn’t sure how much pain I would be in, so I figured why not. The doctor came to talk to me about her options. She wasn’t sure if she would be able to use any of the original achilles since it may not be long enough. She said she might have to use my big toe tendon, which she ended up doing since the actually tendon was not salvageable. I was taken to the OR given anesthesia and I was out until I woke up in RR about 4:20 pm. The surgery was less than 2 hours and I woke up about an hour later. Was only way home by 5 pm. In a splint for the next 2 weeks. Rest, Recover, Ice, Elevate!
I was told the first 3 days would be the worst with regard to pain. They really weren’t too bad since I had that nerve block catheter. My foot was numb and tingly, but not too bad. I took it out on Friday morning and took my first shower/bath. I borrowed a shower chair from my parents and bought a cast cover (too hard to get on and off without pulling at your leg). The next shower/bath I decided to just sit in the tub with my leg hanging out and take the removable shower head down. This was way easier. Most of my days have been spent catching up on tv shows (True Detective, Orange is the New Black, Golf, HGTV, etc). I also watched some how to videos on crocheting. I tried really hard not to work. I wasn’t going to check my email, but decided to do it so that I wouldn’t have to come back to the office and clean up a bunch of them my first 1/2 of the day. This worked out pretty good and I did really well not thinking about anything there. I learned that I need to set boundaries/limits for myself when it comes to working at home. This will keep me sane. The first week passed and having this injury has forced my son to be more self sufficient because my husband won’t do the things I normally do for him. He has been very helpful getting/doing things for me. I had a few instances where I almost put weight on my foot, but caught myself. As week 2 started, I couldn’t wait for it to be over so I could get this heavy splint thing off. I have had a few days where I didn’t have my foot up as much as I probably should have and it felt a little swollen and sore. Nothing major in terms of pain though. Half way through the 2nd week I decided to really clean my toes and paint my nails. My toes are still a little numb, but I can wiggle them. I’m not able to bend them like the other side, but don’t know if that is a result of the splint or part of the surgery. I can’t wait to go to the doctor this afternoon to see how things are going, get the stitches out and get onto the next phase. 2 Weeks down. Looking forward to getting back on my feet and really taking advantage of being able to get moving!