19 November 2013 - no cast!!

Hello all!

After 8 weeks in a plaster cast following the second operation I finally got the cast removed yesterday, hopefully for good!  Unlike the first time round the cast had been very irritating this time so it felt amazing to be able to scratch my leg, Although it was a bit flaky.  I am now back in 2 shoes with a half inch heel raise in the left.  The muscle wastage is pretty bad so a decent amount of PT ahead for me.  I had an ultrasound scan this morning and this confirmed the tendon is in one piece, however he was unable to get it to move so not able to see if it is just being held on by the sutures or if it is actually healing this time.  So the Ultra sound was a waste of time, except maybe for the Doctor who will invoice an eye watering amount for 10 minutes work :-)  On the plus side I move on to PT and I am wearing 2 shoes!!!

It is definitely winter here… the streets are white with frost! and the thermometer says ‘Zero’  ….  the sun is shining though!  Hope you are all well where ever you are!

Monday 21st of October

Got my cast changed for a second time since the second repair.  It is strange having it replaced by the surgeon and not the plaster technician, and to be honest the casts are not quite as good.  The plan this time is to bring my foot back to neutral in a non weight bearing cast, and then back in the boot.  The surgeon had just returned from holiday in Bermuda and was a bit vague, I am back on Monday for another cast (neutral position) so I will hopefully get more time….. Counting the days, cannot get used to being in a cast.  However now winter is coming and the days are shorter it is a bit easier not to think of all the things I could have been doing.

hope everyone is getting on well and getting back to your various sports & exercise…

take care


4 oct 2013- 2nd Op 1st follow up appointment

11 days following surgery I went in to get the cast replaced and stitches removed.  They were stitches this time, tied with a surgeons knit.  Being an angler I appreciate a good knot…

All was well, a very nice and helpful nurse removed the stitches, they don’t come out as easily as staples, but at least the back of your leg does not look like train track.

I was surprised to have the surgeon replace the cast himself, glad it’s the insurance company paying for his time :-)

Given this is a second rupture I will be kept in plaster for almost 8 weeks, getting the cast changed from full to mid to neural  equinus settings, this should result in the foot getting back to neutral without being worked or weight bearing.  I will then get a ultra sound scan before the pt gets his hands on it.

Still no closer to getting back on my bike, however I have a bit of freedom now I  have an automatic car…. Currently sitting in Starbucks watching the golf, waiting for the children to finish swimming lessons, and I can go back to work on Tuesday.  All good for morale!!

all take care, I hope you all have a great weekend!


The second repair

Firstly, my thanks to all of you for you kind wishes and support, it has been a great help as I have got through the recent difficult days.

I went in to a different hospital around 1.30 on Monday and was being operated on by a different surgeon by 3:30.  I had a little bit of time to control / manage my anxiety about hospitals and in particular general anaesthetic.   The only blip was when I did not get released on the same day.

The operation took around an hour, 30 minutes longer than scheduled, however I am lead to believe it went well, fingers crossed.

I am am home now staring at the equinus cast again.  It’s more painful this time, maybe because I am avoiding tramodol…. Anyway taking it easy for the next few days….

I hope you are all getting on well!!

Wedge 4…

Yesterday started off well with a lunchtime visit to the physio and everything looking good.  More exercises to strengthen the ankle and foot…  the 4th wedge taken out and advised to remove the final wedge on Sunday, and talk of getting back in to shoes on the following Friday.  The physio did a Thompson test and advised at least it was fixed.  All good stuff but I am sure you know there is a ‘however’ coming.  I got home from work around 6pm, so I had been getting around in the boot for about 5 hours with wedge 4 removed with no issues or concerns to report, then as I walked down my hall I felt a sickening thump on the back of my leg, very low down near the ankle.  I thought my daughter had tripped and fallen on my leg, but no.  My ankle started to swell but I felt no pain.  I sat down and decided to leave the boot on and go to A&E.  Including travelling time and waiting time it was around 3 hours before I was examined by a doctor.  He advised he was not getting much response from the Thompson test, but apart from the skin being a little warm and more tender around the injury still felt no pain.   the doctor asked me to put weight on it, I put the boot back on and stood on my left leg, again it was not sore but it did feel stiffer than it had earlier.  The A&E Doctor spoke to ‘Orthopaedics’ they did not come to examine me, just advised them to put me back in an equinus cast and I have to go back this afternoon to get an ultrasound.  My fingers are well and truly crossed that the Achilles is still in tact.  My operation involved the Plantaris tendon being weaved around the Achilles, I don’t know if this can rupture, without pain?  I guess I am just clutching at straws and will have to wait until later for the answers…..

Hasta la vista wedge number 3

Another one bites the dust, half way to a ‘neutral’ position on my left foot… All progress is goooooood!!!
Back to the gym later to abuse the leg curl machine. I don’t think you need to be sadistic to be a physiotherapist, but I am sure it helps :-)
Everyone have a great day!!

Physio - Wednesday the 28th of August

Uneventful trip to the Physio today, all appears to be going well and my ankle has mobilised well.  ”It is about maintenance at the moment” so no need for me to go back for a further two weeks.  I have been given a number of core body & leg strengthening exercises to do and I have been given the responsibility of removing a further boot wedge next Wednesday.  A task I will take very seriously!

It seems to be a bit of a waiting game at the moment, as I rest my tendon is feverishly fixing itself…

Have been without Crutches for almost a week, for Monty Python fans out there I am applying to the Ministry of funny Walks!!

Off to the gym for some weights!!

Descriptions for ‘The Boot’

Since having the equinus plaster replaced with a ‘ÖSSUR rebound Airwalker’ I have been given a variety of run of the mill descriptions…

  • “Stormtrooper….”
  • “Is robocop missing a foot?”
  • “You look like a partially assimilated borg” - too geeky for me..
  • “I can’t walk next to you with out getting seasick”
  • I know Skiing is expensive but you really need two boots”

Please comment if anyone has any other descriptions, unlike the ones above preferably humorous…. :-)

Physio - Wednesday the 21st of August

A week of wearing the boot doing some exercises, and being partially weight bearing had made me feel better.  It had taken a bit of a toll, in that I had experiences some lower back pain on the opposite side from the boot.   This was eased by sitting on a cushion on the right hand side only or putting a thick book under my right foot to even me up when sitting.  A few stretches around the side an IT band resolved the problem.

The second Physio session was about checking the mobility in the foot, a bit of manipulation to get it moving and the removal of the first boot wedge!!! a date to mark in the diary.  The Surgeon had advised no to work the tendon or attempt any dorsiflexion at this stage so it is mostly about ‘maintenance’.

Estimated another 6 to 7 weeks before I would be able to drive a manual car again.  Fortunately I had managed to get my father to drop me off, hang around for an hour and take me back to work - very kind of him, but 3 weeks or so after returning to work the logistics of planning all my trips was getting trickier..

Since getting the first wedge removed from my boot I have had a bit of pain / tenderness on the inside of my ankle, right on the bone of the joint.  It is a bit uncomfortable, but not enough to make me scramble for the Tramadol yet ….

I think I have caught up with the detail of my ATR experience so far… I will make every effort to make further updates a bit more ‘Real Time’  ….  Physio again tomorrow….

Physio - Wednesday the 14th of August

Having previously experienced a 5 week wait for an NHS physio appointment and being in the fortunate position of having medical insurance I decided to use it to fund a private physio.  The difference was immediate, I called around 2pm on a Tuesday and got an appointment for 12:15 on the Wednesday.  It makes me think about the NHS “Free Care at the point of Need” - I needed physio now..

The initial appointment was a check of me walking in the boot with crutches, check of the scar and an exercise routine to strengthen the upper leg.  No work could be done on the lower leg until the Physio spoke to the consultant.  I was very pleased with the physio and it was good to be getting back to some form of exercise.  A small step but PROGRESS……..