Monday, March 21, 2011

Nine Weeks Later

Last Friday, I had another follow up appointment with the doctor. Things appears to be progressing very well. I no longer have to wear the large boot brace, but I need to wear a small brace that fits into my shoe. It looks slightly similar to this. In some ways, wearing the larger brace was easier and a little more comfortable. I have very wide feet and it is difficult for me to find shoes that fit, let alone trying to cram a brace inside the shoe. I was a little concerned about trying to find something I could wear to work but my mom managed to find me a pair of black dress shoes at Shoe Carnival that I can wear to work. They fit all right and I'm not in too much pain.

I have noticed that it can be a bit uncomfortable walking around. I didn't really have any pain at all while I was in the larger boot brace. I suppose it is because I am actually putting more pressure on the tendon.

I have been cleared to perform most exercises, elliptical, bike, even some leg exercises at the gym. However, I am not cleared for running just yet. I have a follow up appointment in seven weeks.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Cast Away

On Friday, I had the cast removed. The physician's assistant used a small circular saw-like device to cut it away. It felt great to be free of it. My skin was scaly and red and I could tell that I had lost muscle in my leg from lack of use. Now I'm going to be in a walking boot for the next four weeks and have been given an exercise regimen for the ankle. I'm still using the crutches some, but I should be able to be free of them by the time I go in for the follow up appointment.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Post-Op Appointment

Today, the bandages came off at my post-op appointment. The physician assistant took the staples out, which didn't hurt too bad, just felt like little pinches. It felt so good to feel some air on my foot after two weeks. The picture here is right after they took the bandages off and before putting me in a cast. My foot doesn't look as swollen as some of the pictures I've seen on the other peroneal tendon surgery blogs, but not sure if that comes later.

The doctor showed me some pictures taken during the surgery. It looked like my tendon was torn really bad. He was able to repair it, however. They put me in a fiberglass cast which I'll be in for two weeks, which is a much shorter time than I had anticipated. I'll be in a boot after that and will eventually be able to wean myself away from the crutches. I won't need physical therapy unless I feel it is necessary.

I'll head into the office next week. My mom has helped me adjust the seams of some pairs of my pants for wearing while I'm in the cast. It will be nice to get back into a somewhat normal routine, but I imagine it's going to be challenging with the crutches.

I asked the doctor how soon I'd be able to start exercising again. The doctor said I'll be able to do some swimming and cycling first, then elliptical, then eventually the treadmill. I'm not sure of the timetable for any of this as yet, but perhaps may know more after my next appointment when they take off the cast. In the meantime, I am going to try to do some upper body exercises in the condo gym and some more Pilates and abs exercises with the help of videos from Netflix.

My parents will be leaving tomorrow. If you ever have to go through this surgery yourself, see if you can find someone to stay with you and help out. It makes a world of difference and I feel truly blessed.

Hoping to get out of the condo some this weekend!

Friday, January 28, 2011

One Week Later

Most of the pain has subsided, but I'm still having to keep the foot elevated and refrain from doing much. Today, it looks so beautiful outside. It's a shame I can't enjoy a nice walk in Piedmont Park.

I've been able to a good deal of work from home, although it can be a bit tedious lying down with the laptop for hours at a time. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get into the office after my post-op appointment next week and get back to a relatively normal workday.

I had a couple friends come over and make dinner for me the other night. My parents went to go see a movie. It's great to have people come visit you when you can't go anywhere.

I'm still trying to figure out how to manage to do things on crutches. I've never had a broken leg, so this is all new to me. I'm hoping I won't have to be on them for very long, but I'm not too optimistic considering how bad the doctor said the tendon tear was. I suppose we will just have to wait and see.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Three Days After

This morning was really difficult for me. I woke up at 5 a.m. wanting some more sleep, but could not get comfortable at all. I was really distressed and feeling terrible. After taking some pain medication, I felt much better. Today, I went down to the gym in my condo complex and did some light arm exercises with free weights. While it was not a full workout by any means, it was good just to get out of my bed, out of my condo and doing something different. I'm hoping things just get better, although I know I'm going to have rough days.

Friday, January 21, 2011

The Nerve Block Wears Off

The nerve block I received during surgery lasted for about 12 to 15 hours. As it began to wear off, I started feeling a good deal of pain overnight. My parents helped me with my pain medications and brought me water multiple times. I have been feeling somewhat dehydrated. The pain medications gave me some strange dreams, but overall I think they worked fairly well.

My mom was concerned because I was running a mild fever yesterday. I was told by Shirley from the surgery center today that it's normal to have a slight fever right after surgery, but that if I have one three days after surgery or so, it is probably the sign of an infection. Hopefully, the fever symptoms will not return. Getting a staph infection is probably one of my biggest fears in going through the recovery process.

I tried to eat some cereal this morning, but ended up feeling nauseous, so I took one of the anti-nausea drugs the doctor prescribed. It knocked me out for another couple hours.

Currently, I'm not in a whole lot of pain, but will probably need to take some more pills once the pain comes back. I'm hoping to move over to the couch today and watch TV in my living room.

I've been reading a book called The Discovery of France, which I've almost finished. I also watched The Motorcycle Diaries through Netflix on my laptop. I've also been using Facebook a whole lot. I'm hoping that may in some of this downtime I'll be able to do some creative writing as well.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Surgery Day

I just got home from my surgery. This morning, I had to report to the surgery center at 7:30 a.m. and had the surgery itself at 9:30 a.m. I had to fast from midnight and couldn't drink any water, although I was allowed to have a sip of water with the heart medication I take. Once inside the surgery center, I met with the nurse and anesthesiologist and my doctor. They gave me an IV and a nerve block. The nerve block was a little strange, but I think it was pretty helpful for reducing the pain. They asked me several times my name and what the doctor was operating on.

I woke up feeling relatively coherent. I had anticipated that I was going to awake in a drugged stupor. The nurse gave me some ginger ale and crackers to eat and I lay recovering for a time. The doctor came in told me that the tear in my peroneal tendon was more significant than he expected considering the fact that I had not complained of much pain. I'm hoping it will heal fine, but I'm a little worried that it's going to be a long time before I'm able to run again. I guess I will just have to wait until my post-op appointment and thereafter to see how things progress. Since the tear was severe, I am glad I decided to proceed with the surgery.

What I was most surprised at was being coherent enough to update Facebook and this blog just a few hours after the surgery. Right now, I feel fine, but I'm sure the pain will set in later on.

My parents have been great with helping me out at home. I'm sure the next few weeks will be challenging.