Partial weight bearing and physio

March 2, 2013

After a month of solidly watch TV  (Dexter, True Blood, Breaking Bad, Californication, Game of Thrones   - so good - thank god for Netflix!) and playing on my Playstation 3. And also doing work from home. I am now starting to walk sort of. The physio taught me to partial weight bear so kind of pretend walking with most of the weight of bad leg still on crutches. I also did one step of stairs. It was a very odd sensation. Kind of pins and needles as I suppose the foot is so unused to taking weight.

I feel happy that things are going well. I am also booked in for a scan for April to see how things are going. That should be useful as I haven’t had a scan. Also seeing physio once a week which is really good. I though it would be less than that.

Also I was very brave yesterday and took a wedge out of my boot. So I only have three in now.

Sill can’t do stairs. Can anyone do stairs when your only partial weight bearing?

Also although so typical of me and my weirdness. I have no pain in my foot but my arms hurt. (although they were hurting or months before the rupture from all my kickboxing) Also I have a weird slightly numb hand and bad  foot is slightly numb. I wonder if anyone else has this, could it be the crutches? Although I am not using the crutches that much, only when I go out ( I live above a cafe so I go down to the cafe everyday - that’s my exciting outing) Also been to the restaurant across the road a few times.  I am so lucky no steps! I get around my flat kneeling on a office chair with wheels. I dunno if this is a good idea, I should be trying to walk really.. but how to carry stuff with crutches? I have spilt so my cups of tea!

Well thanks for helpful advice everyone. This website is such a good idea! So interesting to see how everyone is getting on!

Rebecca

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7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. JoyA  |  March 2nd, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    Hey Rebecca, I ruptured my Achilles two days after you!

    I was operated on four days later. I’ve been PWB for just over two weeks. I’m getting pins and needles in my bad foot - my Dr said this was down the boot and circulation. I try to take the boot off for a while first thing in the morning and in the evening and wiggle my toes a lot!

    I started on four wedges and yesterday went down to three. I won’t start physio for another couple of weeks and hopefully will move down to one wedge (or thats the plan)

    My arms and hands hurt a lot from the crutches. I have cotton wool round the handles and use ibuprofen cream on my palms to help reduce the ache.

    I have a rucksack to carry things round in and a flask for tea!

    We’ll get there in the end!

    Joy

  • 2. normofthenorth  |  March 2nd, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    FWIW, I think “scans” are usually over-rated, with more pretend accuracy than real. More details on my blog. Try not to fall too far behind the proven-successful fast schedule in bit.ly/UWOProtocol . Those patients did very well starting FullWB (”as tolerated”) at 4 weeks in. PWB started at only 2 weeks. Don’t jump ahead to that schedule, but try to catch up gradually, and try not to fall further behind.
    Pins and needles are common, both NWB and later. The bottom of the injured foot can be VERY sensitive to pressure, usually especially under the heel. Massaging by rolling it over a ball (tennis?) can help. And patience!
    Stairs can be negotiated on crutches, even while totally NWB. I got a quick course before they sent me home from the hospital when I got ATR surgery (after my first ATR; I skipped surgery after the second). It takes some skill, some strength, and some nerve. Ryanb has posted videos of his unusual technique on his blog. If and when I’m on crutches again, I plan to try it.
    (I’ve posted a neat trick for going down stairs “normally” when FWB, which most people otherwise find daunting, too.)
    There is a kind of “leap of faith” aspect to using crutches on stairs, except for one situation: If you have a strong banister that’s on your injured side when you’re going DOWNstairs, there’s an easy way: Put both crutches in your other hand, and lean heavily on that strong banister, and use it the way you use the crutches. Stand on your “good” foot, shift your weight to the banister and shift your “good” foot down to the next step, “rinse and repeat”. I don’t think it can be done by a normal person on the way UP, but it worked well for me on the way down. (Only for ATR#2, because my banister’s on the wrong side for ATR#1)
    If you can find a cheap yoga mat or camping pad that’s made of good firm closed-cell foam, it’s way better than any fabric or cotton wool to pad crutches (e.g., with some duct tape). You want something that doesn’t crush down to paper-thin when your body weight is loaded onto it. Pipe-wrap foam insulation may work well, too (and it’s dirt cheap and already the right size and shape). Some people find gloves worith the trouble, too.
    I kept a number of small bags in my pockets for carrying stuff around, and I found a ferociously waterproof travel mug with a screw top for my coffee. Wheeled chairs are a big help, and footstools, for elevating and for kneeling e.g. in front of sinks. There must be a good list of Tips and Tricks around somewhere, and I’m sure YouTube has some good videos of the standard way to use crutches on stairs. Nobody’s born knowing how to do any of these things. . .

  • 3. kkirk  |  March 5th, 2013 at 3:46 am

    When I was PWB working towards FWB I was using the railing to support most of my weight as to not stress my AT to much walking up or down stairs. IN the beginning I also used one crutch on my left side to help. I found that going down the stairs was much more difficult and possibly risky than going up (but maybe that was just me). Also, make sure for the next 8 weeks or so, you play it careful and watch your step until you are out of the danger zone.

  • 4. ryanb  |  March 5th, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Here’s my video Norm was talking about:
    achillesblog.com/ryanb/2012/06/19/stairs-and-crutches/

    It’s faster on the way up. But, more importantly, I think it’s a whole lot safer on the way down. If you get into trouble, you can kick your feet forwards and drop down onto your butt… still not great, but hugely better than toppling over the crutches on you arm-pits, which results in a very nasty fall.

  • 5. rebecca4321  |  March 6th, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    Wow that is impressive Ryan B. I couldn’t do that so quick. I did one step a few weeks back and lost balance, luckily my dad was standing next to me and caught me. Now I am sort of fully weight bearing I should be able to do steps. I did a few no problem yesterday I will give it a go again soon.

  • 6. rebecca4321  |  March 6th, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    thanks for your advice again Norm.

  • 7. Anita  |  August 11th, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    .hi, FWB and PWB, what do they actually mean? I am still in an OPED boot, week 9, I am almost at 0 degrees. I have not used crutches for about a month now, so am weight bearing inside the boot. Does this count as PWB?
    I have only had one scan since the ATR and it was inconclusive, though consultant said I had a full rupture.
    For the past couple of nights I have slept without e plastic boot, but have been wearing the protective sock liner. This makes me feel secure. Physio starts tomorrow.
    I didnt have any pain when I ruptured, anyone have any idea why this could be? Also I didnt have a lot of swelling either,though there was some bruising under the inside of my ankle bone.
    This blog has been amazing, I dont personally know anyone who has ruptured in the past 10 years, and even though I was bullied towards the surgical route, I opted for conservative treatment, which I think I am happy with.
    Thank you all for telling your stories, it so helps.
    A

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