Ditched the Cast……..Got the Boot!

Well, here we are…….2 weeks and 2 days post op (16 days total).  Went in for my first post-op appointment with my surgeon this morning expecting to get the cast off, sutures out, new cast on……..see you in 2-3 weeks, thank you very much, I think we all know the drill.  Instead, I was very pleasantly surprised when I arrived.  First his nurse (of 15 years) cut my cast off………cut away all the padding and dressing, then proceeded to peel away all the butterfly tapes that were placed on top of my sutures.  After those were removed, she commented that my incision (all 4″ of it) looked really, really good……..still a little moist, but good.  My surgeon then came in….he took a look at things, commented on how good the incision looked, then asked me to move my foot to 90 degrees…..with a bit of apprehension and after asking him if he was serious, I began to move it, for the first time since my injury, surprisingly, it went to 90 degrees effortlessly…….no pain.  He asked me how it felt, I replied “pretty good, zero pain”………..with that, he had me flex it a few more  times from 45 to 90, back to 45 then to 90, talk about nerve racking…..however, it felt really good.  He then told me that he was going to wait a week to take the sutures out to err on the side of caution and to give the incision another week to completely heal……then he said “I see absolutely no reason why we can’t get you in a boot today”………I nearly fell over.  He dictated a few statements into his tape recorder, then gave his nurse the course of action.  As she was fitting the boot and going over a few things, she told me I was “miles ahead of the game” and to take it easy.  My next appointment  is in a week….November 10….I’ll get my sutures out and begin a light PT schedule….can’t wait, to say the least!  Lessons learned (actually quotes from the surgeon) 1.)  it helped that I was in good physical condition at the time of my injury and that I’m not carrying around a lot of extra weight (I’m 6-4, 195)….and 2.)  he reiterated how crucial the first two weeks post-op are………rest, elevation, hydration, not over doing it, taking it easy…..those are the keys to a quick jump on a successful recovery from ATR……these from a surgeon with 43 years of experience…..needless to say, I believe him.

4 Responses to “Ditched the Cast……..Got the Boot!”

  1. Congrats….big step–no pun intended!

    My surgeon also told me that the first 2-3 weeks was crucial to a good and expedient recovery.

    Hope you get to “steppin” and that PT brings you along really quickly.

  2. Stroh - that’s brilliant! Two weeks in can be a bit of a low point for many people (novelty has worn off and still such a long way to go etc etc ) but you have really done great. Hope it continues! I’m sure your fab positive attitude has really helped too. Keep on doing what you’re doing!

  3. Stroh, Glad to hear you are moving along so quickly in your recovery. My surgery was 3 days before yours & I also went right into the boot at my 2 week checkup. I can’t imagine how you could have moved your foot so easliy to 90 especially with no pain. My calf and AT feel like they have shortened about an inch, and when I flex, foot just won’t move beyond 60. How many wedges are in your boot & are you still NWB with crutches? I started with 3 wedges & am suppose to remove one each week. Told to start 25% partial weight bearing beginning at 4 weeks PO, with hope of 90 and full weight bearing at 6 weeks PO. I guess alot of it depends on the type of tear when the AT ruptured and how much tendon had to be cut away to repair it. Sounds as though you are one of the lucky ones and will be walking without a limp in no time. Take care! Paulette (Justpeachie)

  4. Pendersnitzel - big step is right! A positive attitude, help from friends and loved ones, and plenty of rest/relaxation during the first 2 weeks are certainly key. Best wishes on your recovery and hope you’re “steppin” soon as well.

    Smoley - thanks for your vote of confidence and YES……maintaining a positively fantastic attitude has helped immensely (not to mention the unyielding help of my fabulous wife). I’m very surprised to see where I’m at in this journey thus far……happy to hear things are progressing for you too! Sounds like we’re both well on our way to a full recovery.

    Paulette - thanks for the comment……and to answer your questions…..1.) I have ZERO wedges in my boot, 2.) I’m still NWB with crutches and my scooter….and 3.) I think something else that helped me was an immediate surgery. My operation was only hours after I ruptured it (about 5 hours to be exact). I’ll start a light PT schedule when I go back in a week to get my sutures taken out……LIGHT being the operative word! When my surgeon asked me to move my foot as close to 90 degrees as I could yesterday my first reaction was “are you serious?!”……….but he assured me nothing adverse was going to happen, he just wanted to see my ROM. When I first moved it, I couldn’t believe how much motion I had……..and now that I’m at 90 degrees in this boot my foot honestly feels fantastic. I’ll keep you posted on how things are progressing…….in the interim, congratulations on your recovery….sounds like you’re well on your way!

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