7 weeks post surgery for Achilles tendon rupture

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Hi, I'm seven weeks into this long assed recovery for complete rupture. Down to one wedge in air cast and due back to see consultant next Thursday with physio booked for the Friday. An hoping boot will be removed next week but was,wondering how people have got on when this happens? Do you just star walking? I've Bern moving around the house without the crutches for a few weeks now but the calf muscle is so skinny I'm wondering how it will hold,me up! Am seeing NHS physio first but have booked a private one to try and shift things along . Would like to hear people's experiences post boot!

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  • Posted

    Yep literally just start walking. Although my achilles and ankle were so swollen I couldn’t actually get any trainers on! Bought Birkenstock sandals as was in the summer and ended up having to order trainers in a half size bigger so I could get something with more support on my feet! Was walking mega slow for a good while though. It’s just trying to build up the time you spend on your feet. I ended up back in the boot for a week the week after coming out of it as went over on my ankle on uneven ground and tore the ligaments in my ankle. That was more painful than the achilles op! Definitely wear supportive shoes to try and avoid this though. I’m 7 months post-op and still getting Physio. Don’t think my calf muscle is the same size as my other leg even now 😢. I found swimming helped to get my ankle moving and wasn’t too painful because of the weightlessness of being in the water xx

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  • Posted

    Hi Elaine. I had my surgery end of March this year to shorten the Achilles tendon and also an fhl transfer because I had ruptured it 3 years prior to this and they put it in a cast without surgery and it knitted back loose. This made my walking feel like my bad leg was dragging slightly behind the other one. This time after surgery I was in a plaster cast for 2 weeks then put into a cam boot and my foot was lowered each time until it was back into the normal position. I was taken out of the boot and had to learn to walk through having physio. I had to do a lot of standing on tiptoes with both feet stretching the calf muscles and each time putting a little more weight on my ruptured side as i progressed. That is just one exercise but you need to build the calf muscle up in your operated leg. You will be given other exercises to do aswell. I was told recovery time is about 18 months as it is a slow process. Be patient you will get there.
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  • Posted

    Hi Elaine

    I fully ruptured mine in April 2016.

    One key thing to remember is do not rush or push any part of the recovery. Patience is important as you can quite easily over do it especially as thing are so slow with this recovery.

    Definitely good idea to have private Physio it makes big difference. Post boot it will feel weird and remember every part of you leg will need to build strength, calf, ankle thighs so take holistic approach and thoughts. 

    Follow advice from Physio. Once they have got you on a ‘Balance Board’ order one yourself for use at home as hey Physio only works when you continue excercies at Home however very important you go as they are a must for Guidence and progress.

    Self massage (once stitches have gone) with warm oil from calf down really helped me!! This will really help to loosen everything up. But keep this gentle and only literally to warm up the muscles for now.

    Patience patience patience!!! Good luck!! 

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  • Posted

    Hi Ellie, I’ve gone through all this. Check my feeds out, hopefully that can help you see my progress and you can compare?
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  • Posted

    Thank you! It reassuring to know that the recovery goes well as long as follow advice. I'm due to start a phased return to work the following week. I'm thinking of using a,stick just to take a,bit of weight off the effected leg but will see what physio says .

    Appreciate the advice X

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    • Posted

      Definitely use a crutch as even a tiny bit of unevenness on the ground can be very painful so having one even for comfort for the short term will not do you any harm is what I was told by my Physio at the time. It happened to be worthwhile advice as even walking off a pavement was no easy task!!
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  • Posted

    Hi Elaine,

    All good advice already given. Most important is to be patient. I ruptured mine end of March. I was fortunate to not have a lot of swelling, but once my last wedge was out, started to feel pain in back of heel at Achilles area. I ended up staying in the boot an extra 2 weeks, which did help the pain. However most of my recovery was with pain. Physio once a week. Finally had IMS therapy (Intra Muscular Stimulation - aka dry needling). Had eight sessions, spaced about 2 to 3 weeks apart. Yay. The constant pain is gone. Can walk with no limp. Raising up onto toes on injured foot still ongoing. Can do small raise, and not for very long. I now have a stationary bike for exercise and a balance board. Both are good options. Pool is the best for exercising, swimming in.

    Just wanted to give you my overall experience. You will see that most everyone's experience is unique. But we almost all agree on patience, physio and time. Age, health, and prior physical fitness all factor in. I am 63, healthy and prior physical fitness pretty good. I love to walk. But I don't play sports.

    Take care and good luck!

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  • Posted

    Hi! I've ruptured both of my Achilles tendons at the same time! I'm toward the end of my physical therapy. But u will be able to walk it will be week and my physical therapist said it can take up to a year to get muscle tone back but u will get there. Good luck!

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