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7 weeks post surgery - 2nd post op

For Christmas I got FREEDOM…..from sleeping with my boot on. Yay!  And I start Physio on the 24th.    The doc said today to start walking, without the boot, for a little bit each day. A bit chicken about that bit will start with placing foot on the ground with gradual weight on it.  It seems a bit extreme one day never take the boot off to take it off and go for walk for 30mins.  Maybe I’m being a bit over cautious but I am going to take it slow and see how it feels.   Looking forward to seeing the Physio on Monday and to sleeping tonight without the boot, must remember in the morning to not just stand up!

Excited but kinda weird too!  Anyone have any tips for the first step - I’m thinking trainers not bare feet and slow and not by myself.  It really is a bit scary maybe I should wait until I have the Physio (who I know really well and trust) by my side…..am I being silly?

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  1. 11 Comment(s)

  2. By kkirk on Dec 20, 2012 | Reply

    Sound like your doing great and I’ve been enjoying the feeling of sleeping without the boot to.

    There is nothing wrong with taking it slow and trusting your body. You know it best. I’m not suppose to start 2-shoes until after the holidays , but I take shuffle steps into the shower and in the bathroom and know I will have to take my time, and I ‘m sure I will still need my boot at times, especially at work and all the stairs. BTW I bought some Crocs for driving and walking 2-shoes in 14 days.

  3. By mandy000 on Dec 21, 2012 | Reply

    Thanks Kevin! Sounds like you are getting better every day. Have a really lovely Christmas and keep well! Xx

  4. By Lisa on Dec 21, 2012 | Reply

    I’m not bootless yet but both my current and my former doctor are big on heel pads and on wearing shoes with some sort of heel so maybe that might help. Good luck!

  5. By kkirk on Dec 21, 2012 | Reply

    Merry Christmas to you to Mandy!

  6. By Xplora on Dec 21, 2012 | Reply

    Mandy - The shoes you wear are important. Bare feet is a bad idea at this stage. My PT insisted on good motion control runners like Brooks or Asics but NOT Nike. The heel should be higher than the toe to put less stress on the tendon and I also had wedges in the shoe to give it a bit more. Walking without a limp is going to be hard but take it slow and deliberate. You can also use your crutches for some support until you feel comfortable. You can also expect more swelling. RICE and massage will help. This is a scary but exciting time so be very careful. Won’t be long and you will be enjoying a walk around the block and your speed will increase. Never go faster than you can walk without a limp. Enjoy your freedom and Christmas.

  7. By normofthenorth on Dec 22, 2012 | Reply

    Mandy, do be cautious and nervous and Watch Your Step! You ARE very vulnerable, it’s not just a feeling!

    My 2 PTs (2 ATRs) both had me walking barefoot, and my move to 2 shoes around the house was into Crocs — structurally like barefoot but way soft underfoot where I was super-sensitive. I’ve never seen any evidence from studies comparing post-boot footwear, so it’s all guesswork and “logic”.

    I’m a big fan of using a hinged boot from about 7 weeks on, letting it hinge but not above neutral. Little fancy evidence to prove that helps, either, but it feels very helpful. Lots of support and protection, but you get to start to work your calf muscles and walk quite normally.

    As far as “Never go faster than you can walk without a limp”, that’s 100% impossible at first, when you MUST walk with your injured foot out front. And as your ROM and strength recover, I see no harm in doing an asymmetrical stride, PROVIDED that it’s otherwise normal: toes forward, feet equal height off the floor, etc. Good Luck!

  8. By Hillie on Dec 22, 2012 | Reply

    Hi Mandy

    You have a fairly cautious doctor (long time to wear a boot in bed), and you are at a stage (maybe even a little later) when many have taken their nervous first barefoot steps after ATR (we are all different though, don’t forget). It is daunting but you could just try a few steps on a level surface indoors first, even perhaps with a crutch or a stick the first time. You’ll probably find that the physio pushes you harder than the doctor by the way.

    Not easy, is it, receiving conflicting advice, and not wanting a setback at this time of year, bad enough any time? Above all, listen to the doctor - he (she?) knows your case and has seen your progress. It’s a great feeling though, barefoot on a cold kitchen floor, or even a nice warm carpet. And get that boot back on if unsure of strength or safety.

    Kirkie is right to buy the crocs too - ideal a few weeks post-atr, just take it very steady whatever you do, and definitely don’t do nothing…

    H

  9. By Xplora on Dec 22, 2012 | Reply

    Mandy and others - I guess our advice is coloured by our own experience. I was echoing the instructions from my own PT and my own experience. I must say that I am not a fan of Crocs but that again is personal. My experience did not show walking without a limp impossible but it was hard. I found the shoes and heel wedges an invaluable aid and they had me walking reasonably quick over some distance in a short time. In the long run, the advice you get from a blog can often be conflicting or down right wrong. It is a blog after all(although a very good one) and not accountable. I guess I have been in the bleaches too long and maybe that is where I should return. Remember nothing replaces the hands on instruction of an experienced, well trained professional. They of course are accountable. PT starts tomorrow for you as I recall. I hope you enjoy a trusting and good relationship with your PT as it will make all the difference. I would be guided by what he/she says. I am sure you will work out what is best for you. Enjoy your Christmas, the weather looks good for Tuesday, not too hot. We will be a lot cooler in this part of the country but still not as cold as Norm will be. Merry Christmas Norm as well. regards Stuart

  10. By Muriel on Dec 22, 2012 | Reply

    Hi Mandy,
    As you are seeing a physio shortly you could bring along a selection of shoes & try them out with he/she telling you which type gives you the best support. I didn’t get into 2 shoes until 14 weeks and like you I found it very daunting: i felt safer in the special boot ! Trainers for me were very uncomfortable and pinched the tendon. The only pair of shoes I could stand at first were mid-calf, square heeled leather boots. I started wearing them for an hour then increased that time gradually. Even wearing shoes while sitting down gets your foot & the finer muscles in it used to wearing something else. At 17 weeks I can now wear a couple of other mid-heel pairs for a change. Don’t rush, and do ask your physio for advice if you can. It’s early days yet at 7 weeks. But it’s a great feeling to start wearing some proper footwear! All the best,
    Muriel

  11. By mandy000 on Dec 22, 2012 | Reply

    Thank you everyone for your suggestions, I really appreciate all views! I’m going to take a couple of pair of asics trainers in with me, 1x I’ve been living in these past weeks and they’re about 8 months old, the other brand new…Dave (PT) can help me decide.

    I slept the 2nd night minus the boot - was a bit nervous the first and had a couple of vinos with dinner so didn’t want to risk forgetting and walking (yeah right) by accident. Must say, I kinda was used to the security of the boot and sleeping without it was strange…next night - heaven :)

    I adjusted the hinge on my boot to neutral which is good, feels tight but good. What I can’t do is manage to do steps with the flat sole on it (the vacoped boot has adjustable soles, I still had the slanted one, which makes walking easier as you roll into the step). Will take both with me tomorrow and see what the PT says. It could be the congestion (norm :)) swelling tight feeling or maybe I need a gentle stretch…..Dave will know what to do.

    Stuart - I hope your Chrissy is wonderful in your new place, it’s stinking hot in Sydney today, am envying you right now :)

    Thank you again everyone, have a safe and lovely Christmas and new years! Take it slow!

    Xx

  12. By normofthenorth on Dec 23, 2012 | Reply

    Stuart, please don’t return to the bleachers! I find the recommendations for 2 shoes — what kind of shoes, heel wedges or no, how to walk, etc. — even more confusingly varied than ATR treatments and rehab protocols in general (which is pretty confusingly varied!). And while we have some reasonably good evidence about how the various treatments and protocols, work, I’ve never seen any evidence on whether Crocs are as beneficial for ATR rehab as they are comfortable, or whether they are a shortcut to Hell. And ditto with heel wedges vs. none, and various kinds of shoes.

    So you and your experts may be 100% right, or not, I have no idea. And I know that everybody seems to feel strongly that they’ve got it right, and I think I know that the conviction is not based on evidence, so I’m just confused and slightly leaning toward what produced good results — like UWO, with no specific shoes (AFAICS) and no heel wedges in the shoes. But there’s no proof they got it right, either.

    Good healing and good season, all!

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    • Name: mandy000
      Location: Sydney
      Injured during: The Amazing Race
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