Posted , 3 users are following.
I am posting this as I found the information on this site more useful than what I have received from doctors since my injury.
I fully ruptured (snapped) my Achilles’ tendon 11 weeks ago playing badminton, long story short I played a lot when I was younger and hadn't played for a long time. I was jumping around like I used too and landed on my right leg - I heard the pop and a slight stinging, after figuring out I hadn't landed on something I figured out what happened pretty quickly.
I went straight to emergency (here in Calgary, Canada) and was booked in for an ultra sound the following morning. I was sent home with a temp splint which pointed my toe to the floor at an angle. The worst news I got was from the emergency doctor - stating I would not be fully recovered in 12 - 14 months. This rattled me to the core!
The U.S. confirmed a full rupture - I had no pain during this time. On return to the hospital my lower leg (below my knee) was placed in a hard cast, I was given crutches and told to come back in two weeks.
No surgery - conservative method here in Canada. Changed policy around 6 months ago.
I would advise people new to crutches to look up a how to use video including the best way to take stairs (I learned the hard way). Don't use your arm pits - they get sore and you have a big nerve running through there and your blood supply to your arm. Keep the weight across your chest and arms - you will get stronger believe me. Rubbing is to be expected - I wore an under shirt which also help when the crutches cause your shirt to pull out of your trousers!!!
It happened on a Tuesday night so I rested at home with my foot up for three days, I had considerable swelling around the ankle area which still falres up after 11 weeks. I got used to the crutches over the weekend and returned to work on Monday.
I would start looking for friends / colleagues to help you here - on crutches you can't carry much, bring a back back. Make a packed lunch to bring for yourself - include water. You can't carry anything much - coffee - snacks - lunch - photocopies - note book. At least I am in the office, people outside are in need of insurance!
I returned to the hospital after 2 weeks and had the cast removed, the tendon was not looked at but I was tranferred into an aircast. Much better but still on crutches with zero weight bearing. Very little input from the doctors on recovery expectations other than its a long process! There were three wedges in my boot and I was asked to remove one wedge every two weeks - no weight.
I returned after another 4 weeks of tough times on the crutches (including two falls where I hit the tendon while wearing the boot). Still very little input from the doctors and asked to return in 7 days.
This was my best appointment - the doctor actually examined the tendon. Had me push with my toes and confirmed it was attached! Woohoo! It got better - he told me to remove the remaining wedge in my boot and lose the crutches over the next 2-3 days. He asked me to start physio and said I could be out of the boot in the next 3-4 weeks. He said other stuff but at this point I couldn't hear anything for the cheering in my head!!! At this point I stopped sleeping with the boot on - even better,
The worst was over! I could carry things again, I could be useful around the house, help with the kids, not break into a cold sweat at the top of steep stairs, life was nearly back to managable. I am an active person and crutches had a big impact on me.
After nine weeks total I was told by my physio to remove the boot and start to move around without it - slowly at first. My right leg muscles had dissappeared - calf and quad.
Today I am at 11 weeks since the rupture - I can walk without a limp if I focus on it. I am able to live a relatviely normal life - my shoes match =)
The initial report of 12-14 months was bull - I should be back skiing and other activities after Christmas. I can cycle now and walk distances.
It is a long haul but not as bad as it can seem when you are stuck on crutches and you have no idea if you are getting better or not.
Ask any questions you have - this post is to help those to whom this has just happened and you want / need / crave more information. If you know someone that has had this injury then buy them a coffee or lunch and grill them for as long as you can. They know your pain.
Thanks and get well soon. Physio for me this afternoon and my nemesis - the Balance Board of Doom!
1 like, 9 replies