Well, It’s now day 2 of my post-op recovery. It was a longer road getting to this point than I would have liked, but I am happy I am finally on the road to a full recovery, and a clear path.
It was election night, Nov. 4th, and I had our first playoff game in Volleyball. We were the first cede, and were subsequently playing the bottom cede, so I was debating whether I should stay and watch the returns from the election, or go, win, and come home quick. I went. After being on the court and warming up for no more than five minuted or so, I accelerated forward, and felt a big snap at the base of my right calf. I was confused at first, thinking one of my buddy’s made it to the gym and was messing around by tripping me up or something. It felt exactly as if someone had kicked me in the back of the leg. After a few seconds, I realized what had happened. I tried to take a few steps and it felt as if I was stepping in a deep hole with my right foot. I knew then it was bad.
I went to the ER then next morning, and they confirmed after a positive Thompson’s test, that I had at best a severe tear in my achilles. Surgery was likely she said. I got in the next morning to see a orthopedic surgeon who was just beginning at this practice. I was his first patient it turns out. He gave me good news in that he didn’t think I would need surgery, and that he did not want to immobilize it either. Good news, but it did not sit well at all. Luckily I have been in Health and Fitness for along time, and I have knowledge of the mechanics of the lower leg, and I know how serious an Achilles Rupture is, and the typical treatment protocols. None of which was done by this doc. I tried to listen, him being the doctor and all, but after week of nothing being done, of extensive bruising setting in, and of things jsut not being good, I decided to seek a second opinon. I was lucky again to get in to see Dr. Watt the day I called. A very well respected Orthopedic Surgeon who has done many Achilles injuries. He’s worked with the SeaHawks, he was a volleyball player in college like me (an outside hitter as well), he was a climber like me, and his name is Michael. It was serendipity I guess. He told me what I had suspected and what I had expected my first doc to tell me. He laid out my options which were operating or going a conservative route which requires being in a long leg plaster cast. After weighing the pros and cons, the risks and benefits, and my best chances of getting back to 100% and beyond, I decided to go ahead with surgery.
The experience with surgery was awesome two days ago. I was so impressed with the service, the compassion, the empathy. They took wonderful care of me. After it is done, Dr. Watt came and talked with me and told me that the tear was much more severe than was previously thought by the first doc. It was about a 90% tear, not a 40% as was thought. Had I not had the operation, I probably never would have run or jumped with same gusto again. What a relief!
I am now two days post -op, and I feel pretty good. Some pain, but all in all, not too bad as long as I keep it up. It feels so much better to know that I am on the road to recovery. Next step, out of the splint and into the cast next week.