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Achilles rupture surgery - support group

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  • Update!

    Okay, so didn't get to speak to my consultant today as they were down a few doctors and running late in the clinic so I left things be. However one of his minions examined me and passed on his findings to the big cheese who announced...

    Full weight bearing for one week, then one lift out each week until I will have worn the boot for a week with no lifts in it. Then I return for the next instalment.

    All is going swimmingly well at present, the doctor was very pleased with my wound. All in all a top day! Went shopping afterwards and walked WITHOUT CRUTCHES! for ages! Walked loads.

    No problems, without the crutches. I'll let you know how this goes but it's going well so far. Good luck chaps, keep your spirits up, healing is around the corner!


    • SWANCV; Nice one Dai, I should have clicked you would be in Cardiff, we could have gone down the Bay for a beer to celebrate your progress. Sun was out too! Bollox to shopping !

      My AT (90 degree cast) is itching like hell. I want to cut a hole in the back of the cast and put some cream on it. I've managed to get a cheap bbq tong thing down to my heal to scratch it... agghhhhh heaven..agghhhhh.

      Unfortunately, my plaster is falling apart underneath. I have a hole where the heel is and it is generally going soft. Maybe I should get it changed... probably will get abused by the plasterer for not looking after it.



        If you want an answer to the question? personally, I don't think there is one ? unless you want to pay 20 for an article on one of these medica websites that doesn't tell you anything; good luck !

        Try sod's law!


        • Saw my Dr today, I have been released for any activity that I want to try, also release for Physio, although I will continue to do it on my own. Will be playing a little ice hockey tomorrow night. 10 1/2 weeks post op.


          • I wonder about this warming up thing too. It seems that quite often we're told that AT injuries can happen to people who haven't warmed up properly or who are out of condition. Now, I am 44 and hadn't played tennis for 4 years, but I did warm up before the game and my AT went at the end of the first set. It was also a very warm day. I am not completely inert otherwise, if nothing else I walk the dog each day and play football with her in the pine cones. So, was this AT going to go anyway, regardless of what I did? And if so, what about the other one, which has been hurting a bit recently since I returned to being less physically inactive? (Strikes me that whatever adventures happen to one leg might well happen to the other, whether is is a genetic thing or even a case of historical damage weakening the tendon leading to later rupture.)


            • Played golf yesterday, the first time since my ATR that the bad leg has had to actually perform, as opposed to being mollycoddled and generally being the centre of attention. Yep it complained but so did the rest of me! Damn this inertia thing! The bones in my bad foot are creaking like I'm terminally arthiritic and I don't know any longer if this is down to not being used or being over used. The physio is very sanguine, I asked him about inflammation (thanks for the tip MikeBNR) and he just said no no it hasn't been used for a long time. But the whole foot is swollen after I've been walking on it for a mile or 2, and this is a month since I came out of plaster.


              • Hi folks
                Now roughly day 94.
                I have been away for a week or so: lot of catching up to do on this forum. I?ve been walking around the likes of York and Scarborough in Northern England. Strange when old ladies and grannies make allowances for you and generally feel sorry for you: I've considered myself a fit person over the last few years, so this takes some getting used to mentally.

                I have been wearing an aircast boot with no wedges for a couple of weeks now. I can walk without a crutch (with boot on), but I didn?t do this extensively over the last week. I walked around sightseeing with one crutch, but after a while the AT got so sore, I started using two crutches again (temporarily). A blow to the ego after the progress I had been making. It was tough walking around for three or four hours (although stopping from time to time). My exercises are progressing well although my AT gets pretty sore. I can now put 1/3 body weight on my heel when doing heel raises. I?m pretty pleased with that.

                My consultant had given me the green light to exit the boot (gradually). I only got my first opportunity to do this on Thursday and it was an interesting experience. I could barely get my right foot into trainers (sneakers) due to the swelling that is still there on my foot. I had to use a crutch. But it seemed to be fine and I will increase this at home, although I will use my boot for going up stairs and going outside for now.

                I will start trying to drive today: will post back with my experience round a secluded car park (if I can find one).



                • MikeBNR - are you in the medical profession as a matter of interest? You use the term 'we' in some of your posts.
                  AlanW ? when I was in a cast, I managed to tangle my foot a few times and do what you did, but all was fine.
                  DavidG1 ? I never really had the itchy sensation when I was in the cast. Must be really frustrating. You have my sympathy!
                  WRobzeus ? you remain an inspiration!


                  • Another new and reluctant member of the ATR club here. Briefly - 36, male, reasonably fit, (running, cycling, kitesurfing) was playing casual game of football, stepped backwards, heard pop, felt a whack.. the familiar story.

                    I went straight to A&E where a rupture was diagnosed and I was set in a temporary cast, 20 hours later the next day the consultant recommended conservative treatment to me and I was put in a permanent cast. I asked about the relative benefits of surgery and conservative treatment and he said that given the apparently clean break in my tendon, small gap that closed when toes were pointed and early presentation at the hospital I stood a good chance of making a strong recovery without surgery.

                    Now it's fairly clear that surgical repair has a more vocal support group over the non-surgical option and I guess I'm concerned whether this treatment was recommended because of the nature of my injury or because this is the NHS and its cheaper to pay for a bit of plaster than it is for surgery.

                    I don't know, it's all a bit of a fog of frustration, discomfort and slightly pathetic self pity at the moment!
                    Last edited by Jomoj; 03-09-2007, 05:42 AM.


                    • Jomoj: Hi, I'm Schonzy (first post #748) Sorry to hear about your ATR, but welcome to the club. I feel bad for anyone who comes here as they have had a life changing event. It sounds like we have some things in common. About the same age, fit and were almost doing nothing when had the ATR. I elected for the surgery and was told in the end I would probably have a 100% recovery and bit more athletic ability with the surgery. The surgery is 30-45 minute proceedure. You might want to get a few opinions. Really can't hurt to talk with a few people. I get my first cast off on 9/4 and will learn more about my progress and treatment plan. Catch up with you soon. Hang in there !


                      • [QUOTE=AmiS]MikeBNR - are you in the medical profession as a matter of interest? You use the term 'we' in some of your posts.

                        I didn't even realize I used the word 'we'...amazing you picked up on that.

                        I'm not a doctor, but I do work in the medical field - I'm a biomedical engineer. I was a mechanical engineer when I got out of college and started working for a company that made medical devices - mainly sutures, absorbable implants, things like that. In the past few years, I went back to school and started getting more on the device design side of the business.

                        It's a pretty interesting job, always learning something new. As a plus, I get access to lots of medical journals for free and I can research different ATR recovery programs. On the downside, I have to do things like last Friday where I spent all day in a cadaver lab as some docs tried using the new product I'm currently working on. Nothing like standing all day in an aircast in front of a slowly decaying cadaver.


                        • Jomoj good to see you joining in, have a read around loads of support available here. For myself, I went under the knife on 20/07/07 and the wound has healed totally. I can limp around without a walking boot but am aware that there isn't enough tendon to allow me to walk normally, I can only use it up to the neutral position. However each day brings small success. (Came downstairs today, bad foot leading at all times, without holding on to anything.) Just being bale to carry stuff without a rucksack is amazing!

                          I can now start gentle stretches although the surgeon thinks I am wearing the walking boot all day, I only boot up to really walk other than around the house or when my leg gets tired and I need to do stuff. I find walking with the boot on and two lifts inside it so difficult that it hurts my back and pelvis due to the imbalance of leg length.

                          However my careful walking is working brilliantly.

                          Hope you are all healing well out there in ATR clubland, keep at it.


                          • Good day to you all, just returned after my 2 week vacation to Paris.

                            16 weeks today since my injury, thought I would give you an update. The limp has almost gone, calf getting stronger by the day, swelling still present at the end of each day. I can even manage a sort of flat footed jog.

                            During the holiday I played 3 x 18 holes and 1 x 9 holes of golf all walked, I walked around the sights of Paris for 4 days including a walk up to Montmatre and a climb of 30 meteres from the deepest Metro station in Paris (Abbasses) - I refused to use the lift on each of the 3 occasions !! Drove around 1000 km in a manual left hand drive. So a real test of the injury which did not get in the way of the enjoyment of the holiday.

                            I have now been discharged from the consultant and probably have just one more physio session planned.

                            The 16 weeks has flown by, progress has slowed down but little landmarks are being achieved each week.

                            Good luck to those on the path to recovery.


                            • Jomoj
                              I think sometimes I may have gone down the conservative treatment if it had been diagnosed immediately out of fear of surgery. So in my case the delay in diagnosis caused me to have an op. When did your rupture occur? Did your consultant explain the % rates of re-rupture when considering the pros and cons of conservative treatment vs op? If you have a physically active lifestyle, the op is the preferable route often.


                              • PeteB
                                I think that in the early stages of AT recovery, we think that once we are out of the boot/cast everything will be ok. I thought early on that post three months, most things will be back to normal. For me they're not really, so I'm wondering when 'normality' will return. It will take a good long while.
                                I'm now walking pretty easily without the crutch but with aircast boot on. I am taking the boot off in the evenings more frequently (not at work) and putting trainers (sneakers) on, but I am still tentative in doing this. This is all getting a little frustrating.

                                Driving? Well I didn?t manage this yesterday, but sat in my parked car, practicing moving my right foot between the accelerator and brake. My heel felt a little sore doing this, but was ok after. Will do it again this evening. More frustration.