How Did That Happen???
Just another weblog
All’s well that ends well.
Posted on September 23rd, 2009 at 10:23 am by lopo1969 and

I thought I would update the blog as I haven’t visited much lately.  I have just returned from a holiday in Cornwall, where I walked across cliff tops, climbed up hill faces, wandered, strolled, trotted, basically did everything I would normally do, before the dreaded ATR. I can even wear my beloved heels, even if it is only for a couple of hours at the moment.


I would never have believed it 16 weeks ago, but I’m almost back to where I was before May 29th.  I still have some swelling and a few aches and pains at the end of the day. My partner soothes these away with his healing hands and a quick massage (bless him).


I can stand on both tiptoes, and almost, almost do a single heel lift on the injured leg, not quite but I can see it coming over the horizon. I’m still attending physio but I think my next visit will be the last, and I will be advised to carry on with the exercises at home, as I have been doing.


If you have just ruptured your Achilles, take heart, be patient, and listen to the professionals.  Don’t run before you can walk, literally and figuratively. it is totally worth all the frustration of immobility in the early stages. It will get better.  Keep on keeping on.


Happy Healing everyone,  Love Louise xxx

Stretch and Burn!
Posted on August 7th, 2009 at 9:01 am by lopo1969 and

1st physio appointment today!  Up I limped and was ushered through to my cubicle, where a lovely, fresh faced Physio, who looked like fitness personified, asked lots of questions and listened patiently while I regaled her with what I thought was a very amusing version of my ruptured Achilles.  She smiled in all the right places, and then got to work.


I walked/limped up and down a few times while photos were snapped and notes were noted.  Then some rigorous manipulation and testing to see how far the tendon would stretch.  Better than I thought, but disturbingly she did notice that my right ankle (and so far my good ankle) was not aligned properly and may need some correction in the future, so a swift referral to the podiatrist may be in order, I’ll keep you posted.


Anyhoo, where was I….?  Oh yes….then she turned her attention to the swelling. After having a good old feel round, she concluded that this is not due to imflamation, rather it’s down to oedema.  A viscous fluid which is building up due to the fact that my calf and ankle aren’t working to pump this into the lymphatic system.  So she showed me a massage technique for the foot, ankle and calf that HAS to be done every night for 15 minutes to reduce the swelling.  How my partner is going to love this, bless him, I think he thought his tender mercies were no longer required, but alas no, duty calls My Love.


Armed with some gentle stretching exercises, to be done 3 times a day for the next week, I hobbled out, beaming and feeling ready for anything.


It’s strange but for the first time since the accident I feel like I can positively contribute to my recovery now, and it’s a huge step (no pun intended) forward psychologically.


Until next week and the real strengthening exercises begin, Happy Healing folks xx

2 Shoes!!!!
Posted on July 30th, 2009 at 4:29 am by lopo1969 and

I have been officially discharged from the Fracture Clinic and given my trusty aircast back to the Orthotics department.  After the initial euphoria about being told the tendon had healed, I’m now feeling quite vulnerable and very wobbly.  It’s actually quiet scary walking around without any support at all,  and I feel like my leg will give way under me at any moment.


The calf aches a lot, but I supposed that is only to be expected as it’s not been working for nearly 9 week.  I also can’t quite get my foot flat on the floor yet.  I have to wear a slight heel in a shoe, and walk around on slight tiptoe on the left leg.. I have got quite a good range of motion though, much better than I thought I would have. I can rotate the ankle, and bring the toe up to very nearly 90 degrees before it starts to feel uncomfortable.


I’m so glad that my consultant decided to take the conservative route with me now.  I have no external scaring and minimal internal scaring, so well done Mr Khan, I owe you one.


Roll on 7th August when Physio starts.  Hopefully walking around some this week will strengthen it a little each day and I’ll be ready for the real work to start.

Thin end of the wedge.
Posted on July 8th, 2009 at 10:18 am by lopo1969 and

Re-visited the Orthotics man today to have a wedge removed from the storm-toopers boot.  I was so cocky about it all; I’ve been walking around with just one crutch with no problems.  So I thought “hey what difference can on little wedge make?” Hmmmmm a big bloody difference is what.

I confidently replaced the boot, re-inflated the air bags and stood up un-aided.  Big mistake, there was a very disconcerting shooting pain up the calf and a horrible pulling sensation at my ankle.  My journey to the car was slow and laboured with many stops. 

I’m going back to 2 crutches for a couple of days to let the tendon stretch out and then try single handed again.

Oh and my first physio appointment is booked for August 7th, so hopefully by then the tendon will be fully stretched and ready for more torture.

Nature Finds A Way
Posted on July 1st, 2009 at 10:22 am by lopo1969 and

It was my 3rd visit to the fracture clinic and I was anticipating that I would have another fibreglass cast set at 90 degrees. So was resigned to another 2 weeks of very limited mobility. I was wheeled into the plaster room and the nurse proceeded to remove the cast to reveal a very hairy (like a baby gorilla), limp, and weedy looking, left leg. I couldn’t believe the size difference between the two calves.


Sitting there, waiting for the Doc I could feel that my foot felt very floppy, I and had a little panic that the tendon was still dangling mid calf and I would have to go through surgery after all.   When the consultant did finally arrive, he had a good old rummage round and then asked me to kneel on all fours on the couch, with my legs slightly apart and feet dangling over the edge, (you really have to leave your dignity at the door, Dear Reader) apparently this is called a Thompson test, and it involves squeezing the calf to check for movement….and it was confirmed. The tendon had re-attached! How clever of it to do that all by itself!  I was totally delighted and it felt like a weight had been lifted.


The consultant then decided that I could go straight into an aircast with 3 wedges, and wonder of wonders I can weight bare!! It feels so good to walk with both legs.  I look like a member of Borg with this robot style boot on.  It’s all very technological too; it requires a little pump to fill it with air through various valves.  The air cushions hold your foot firmly in place and it doesn’t move at all. Its very 21st century Darling!


The thing I have to remember now it that the tendon is still very weak and could rupture again, so I have to take it easy and not push too hard.  I’m cocker hoop though; this has been a good day!

The Achilles Double Whammy!
Posted on June 29th, 2009 at 11:42 am by lopo1969 and

Just when you are think you are getting your head around the indignity, frustration, stupidity of the the whole situation, along comes another side effect of your ATR to bite you on the bum!  In the 4 weeks and 3 days, (yes Dear Reader I am counting the days) I have managed to gain half a stone!!!! 

I have to say that I was not the most active of people before my incident, (how my nearest and dearest will laugh at the statement) but now I barely move. I get up, haul myself into the shower, haul myself to work (in the car) haul myself to the office, and there I sit all day long.  I have been conscious about what I have been eating and drinking etc, but this is conclusive proof that I have not been vigilant enough.  Looking at the scales this morning I could actually feel the arteries clogging up, and had a “simpson’s” type  cartoon vision of me collapsing, in slow motion, cluthing my arrested heart with my cast still firmly anchoring me to the bathroom floor.

So now I need to ask the ATR community, has anyone got any ideas about some  form cardio excersise that I can do sitting down? Anything that will curb the fat tide. PLEASE!!

The Show Must Go on
Posted on June 25th, 2009 at 8:14 am by lopo1969 and

A much anticipated visit from my best mucker and favourite drinking partner  seemed to be scuppered by my temporary handicap.  How could we carouse, rampage, and terrorise south east Hampshire with me in my bath chair, popping codeine like candy?  “Hey no problem” said my irrepressible friend (how blessed I am to have such positive people in my life) “I’ll push you from pub to pub, and you can substitute Stella for codeine”  Problem solved!


Turned out he was the champion of champion chair pushers. We navigated the pot-holed Promenade of Southsea, all the way from Eastney to the Gunwarf.  He even managed a cocky one-handed technique, which I have to say was quite un-nerving, especially at top speed with the wind in my hair. 


So Dear Reader, have wheels will travel, and laugh, and booze and enjoy general merriment even with a torn Achilles!  Thank you Richard

Bring Me My Bath Chair!
Posted on June 25th, 2009 at 6:50 am by lopo1969 and

Getting around is a major headache when your leg is encased in fibreglass and your toes are elegantly pointing to the ground.  I have managed to hire an automatic car to get me to work, but getting from the car into a building is a marathon of effort.  When I eventually arrive at where I need to be I’m in need of oxygen and a shower.


What about disabled access I hear you all cry!  Ah well, that’s what I thought until I was disabled.  Most disabled entry to and egress from a building seems to be at the back or the side, and quite far away from the main areas of where I need to be. Not only does it take me twice a long to get anywhere, you are starting off from further away.  I have been vowing to myself that when I’m up on my feet I’m going to start some national campaign for equal access! But who am I kidding, it’s me we are talking about here.  as soon as I’m up and about I’ll want to forget about the whole sorry episode and get on with my life

Keep Your Dancing Shoes On!
Posted on June 24th, 2009 at 7:03 am by lopo1969 and

Here I am.  Week  three of “conservative” treatment for my ruptured Achilies tendon.  Third cast, foot at approx 60 dregrees,  wobbling on crutches, and fed up to the back teeth of my inability to do anything for myself.

It was the most freakish accident, and I must warn all you budding Carrie Bradshaws out ther,”KEEP YOUR DANCING SHOES ON!  I was at a friends wedding.  Killer outfit, equally killer heels.  Tottering and drifting about all day, I even danced in my gold strappy “F” me shoes. Then I decided to have me a little sit down, sip on my G&T and slip the old stillettos off.  As I did so I stood up suddenly and WHAMMY.  I heard a loud snapping sound and what felt like a baseball bat hitting me very hard accross the left calf.  I sat down immeadiately. I knew some serious damage had been done, as I could not bear any weight on the left leg at all.  Various friends attended me, soothing my brow and feeding me alcohol (for the shock you understand). Someone produced a tea towel full of ice to stop the swelling. So with the aid of a drunken reveller and my Heath Robinson bag of ice I hobbled/hopped to bed.

I rocked up at A&E the next day, and  after a quick fumble and a  ”kneel” test the diagnosis was confirmed.  Ruptured achillies,  surgery recommended.  Well, to add to the confusion Dear Reader, I was actually 250 miles from home, having travelled to attend this nuptual festivity.  The local consultant wrote a letter to be taken to my home A&E with said recommendation on it. 

So after arriving a day later at my home town A&E, and another 4 hour wait(within NHS targets, so I’m told) the consultant there decides to ignore this former advice and treat conservativly, with various casts, at various degrees, over numerous weeks.  What? Why? I must have surgery I cried!!!!  After a valium and lie down, the consultant began to calmly explain to me that, in my circumstances, and taking into consideration the risks of surgery, I really am going down the conservative route.

So I left the hospital, Left leg in plaster to the knee, with my toes pointing in some grotesque arabesque ballet position, a pair of elbow cruthes, a wheelchair, and a very poor attitude, Dear Reader, I can tell you!

Fortunatley I have a wonderful, supportive partner, who has waited on me hand and foot (please pardon the pun) and even went out and purchased my “ladies monthly unmentionables” without even a whimper.  I am ashamed to say I am a very impatient patient. Stroppy, indignant and self pitying. So……I have decided to blog it all out here, so I can return to my loving partner, grateful, happy and positive, having vented my spleen here.

My next appointment is on Wed July 1st, when the magical 90 degrees will be applied, and the tendon will be at “full stretch” once again.  So Dear Reader, until the next time, happy healing ,  Lopo1969 xx