Week 4: First Physical Therapy Appointment

Hi everyone, happy FriYay!

This is the first post I’ve ever done on time! As I said last post, I was cleared to start some passive physical therapy this week until I transition into more active treatment when I’m out of NWB in 2 weeks. I found a small PT office close to my house with great reviews about really personal and hands-on treatment and also education about the injuries, rehab, and future prevention. After I jumped through a million and one hoops with my insurance, I showed up to my appointment in the afternoon.

The exact instructions on the PT referral were “PWB 25%, for passive and AAROM”. This means I am allowed to put up to 25% of my body weight onto my left achilles and I’m only focusing on passive and Active Assisted Range of Motion (AAROM) exercises.

Today’s appointment was more of an evaluation of my leg post-op and an introduction into what I’ll be doing starting next week until my 3rd post-op at the end of the week. My PT first measured my left ankle’s mobility in all directions using my right leg as the control for comparison and wrote down all the degree measurements. She said that the swelling actually looks really good and there don’t seem to be any concerns about the joint or the current state of my flexibility. After, she manually worked on the foot and spent time stretching my foot in dorsiflexion. My achilles–the wound specifically–was feeling a little tight throughout the stretching but it wasn’t anything severe. I have been incredibly careful with my boot the last few weeks so I think that it was just my ankle and achilles’ first chance to move in a long time and test the healing/scabbing of the incision. Next, I rolled over onto my stomach and my PT massaged my lower calf and the area around the incision which felt like it released a lot of tension I didn’t know was there. The tightness in my wound was completely gone by the end of the session. Finally, she showed me a couple of my exercises for the next week: the heel sliding on the ground (3×10reps once a day) and a strap-assisted ankle inversion/eversion (3×10 once a day, assisted because only passive and AAROM movement right now).

Overall, today turned out great! My PT was super nice, informative, and great with answering any questions I had. I felt very comfortable in the PT office and we were able to talk about our lives, last night’s US Open matches *sigh Serena*, and gender balance in the workplace! I have a long road to recovery ahead of me but my PT assured me that healing is slow but possible and I feel that I’m in good hands. Looking ahead, I’ll have to stay really diligent if I go through with my big holiday travel plans and I’ll probably have to find another physical therapist when I move out to LA in 2021 but I’m willing to do whatever it takes to get back to my old life so I’m here for it!

Thanks!

Vicky

P.S. I think I figured out a way to wash my boot (thank god)

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