Ruptured achilles - 8 weeks on

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Hey guys. Ruptured my achilles 8 weeks ago playing football. I'm 35 and quite fit.

I've been in a boot for most of the time (pot for the first week or so). 

After the first week or so, the throbbing had gone and I wasn't in pain. The most pain came from the ultra sound, that was torture.

I soon got used to the boot and was barely using crutches around the house. After 6 weeks, they slightly altered the angle of the boot, and got used to that after a day and was hobbling around without crutches again.

8 weeks passed and they have flattened the boot. And wow, I'm amazed how bad it is. As I now have the extra motion and the tendon is being stretched, it's awful and I can't really get around without the crutches, unless I cheat and just hobble on my heel.

i don't feel like I've got enough information off the physio. This time I was told an exercise to do, 20 times a day. Where I just sit and move onto the balls of my feet. I'm allowed to take the boot off for bed.

When I was leaving physio, I was clearly not walking right and she told me to use the crutches to take some of the weight, but that I had to walk on it as in 2 weeks the boot was coming off.

I feel like this is worse than it should be. It's so painful. And I'm quite fed up now as this is the least mobile I've been, excluding the first week or so. And I was planning to go back to work this week - my sick note is for another 2 weeks, but thought it'd be ok until they changed the boot. And I'm worried that when the sick note runs out in two weeks and they take the boot off, I'm barely going to be able to walk.

I wonder whether it's worse than first thought by the doctor as I wasn't offered surgery.

It's frustrating. I remember reading not long after I'd injured mine, Gordon Ramsay had done the same. And of course he was offered surgery and he seems to be back on his feet now. So would I have had surgery if I had the money to just go private and pay for it?

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    You need to go see a reputable orthopoedic surgeon asap.  I have heard of the non-surgical option however, you are young enough and active enough where most surgeons would have urged surgery.  I'm 39 and very active and I had a complete ruptue May 9.  I had surgery May 26.  I had the Minimal Invasive/pars surgery.  I started physical therapy 14 days after surgery which is almost unheard of...the typical protocol is 6-8 weeks after surgery before starting physical therapy. 

    I have not been in pain the entire time even at time of injury. The only pain I had was the 17 days between injury and surgery, I would feel a burning sensation at 2am for 1 hour.  It was excruciating.  It happened at that time each night.  It stopped right after surgery.  I was put in a cast for 10 days and then put in a boot with 3 heels.  Every 2 weeks I am to remove a heel.  I just removed 1 heel yesterday.  July 18 I see my doctor again and at that point I am to be put in a lace up boot and wear normal shoes that will accomodate the laceup ankle boot...July 18 will be 7 and half weeks since surgery I will be in normal shoes with a laceup. 

    My surgeon is part of the "aggressive" surgeon group as you can see from my timeline.  Most don't start physical therapy after surgery not until 6-8 weeks after.  My doctor started at 14 days and he was a bit angry the physical therapist couldn't fit me in sooner.  He wanted me to start at 10 days.  My surgeon works with top elite football players, nationals baseball team, olympic judo team...so he knows this injury well and has to get his patients moving as fast and safely as possible....when you are dealing with elite athletes and millions of dollars.

    From what I'm seeing you didn't do the surgery route.  I would go see an orthopoedic surgeon immediately.  Though you may no longer be a candidate for surgery as you are I believe 8 weeks after injury and thus you have scar tissue.  I think the only option would be to unfortunately re-rupture and then get the surgery.  NOT RECOMMENDED!!  But the non-surgical treatment has a much higher rate of re-rupture than the surgery route.

    My suggestion, go find a ortho surgeon immediately.

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  • Posted

    Hi Mr jaffa

    I was in a cast for 10 weeks and then a boot for a further 6.

    Had a tendon transfer n reconstruction on both feet. At each stage the pain was different for different reasons . Initial pain form surgery n then the stiffness n tightness was pretty horrid and painful so I would say it's nothing to worry about. If you have access to a physiotherapist ide tell them so they can show you how best to stretch and strengthen the tendon. Sadly it's a slow process but b you will get there. My physiotherapist would massage my leg which helped a lot . Painful but I felt the benefits immediately.....loosened the tightness .

    If you are worried request another ultrasound if possible.

    Take things slowly and be careful not to overdo it at this pretty fragile stage.

    Nikky

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    • Posted

      Thanks for both replies. Both very different I guess.

      It does frustrate me knowing that if you're a professional athlete or have plenty of money, you'd get much better care.

      I should say that I initially went to hospital and the first appointment to see a specialist was nearly two weeks away! I remembered I had insurance through work so went private and got an appointment the next day. I saw a specialist who was very good. And after looking at the scan results he decided I didn't need surgery. I've not seen him since. And have just been seen via the NHS.

      I'm thinking I just need to keep walking on it with the aid of my crutches to take some of the weight. Keep stretching the tendon. Next appointment is 10 days. If I don't feel any better in a few days, I wonder whether I should try and get a sooner appointment, even go private again....

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    • Posted

      i could understand tightness and weakness but why is it that when i try to move my foot its like im hitting a wall (without pain) after a few degrees of movement? People say its normal, (6 weeks post op) that the mucsle is weak but it feels like its something else. It can move if I use my hands but not on its own, its a weird sensation. Literally like something isnt allowing it to bend more.
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    • Posted

      Well by my experience, 6 weeks on is still early. I'm now nearly 10 weeks. I'm currently sat with my boot off doing some exercises which I wasn't told to do till 8 weeks. So don't worry.

      Im still feeling pain and tightness which is concerning as the boot is meant to come off in a few days. I'm assuming/hoping I get to keep the crutches for a while.

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    • Posted

      everywhere i read online it says 12 weeks is when you get full range of motions or maybe it takes the full 6 months. I've seen like 3 doctors and none give me any information or details other than the immediately important stuff. 

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