Achilles rupture repair – Day 7, Surgery

Monday 17th July.  Started off playing with the bench press.  Not much legs involved so can still play with those.  Thank you Anna for making sure I stay safe!

And after playing first thing in the morning, I get the phone call from the hospital…Can I make it in midday for surgery that afternoon!  Woo hoo!  It’s happening!

So cleared my diary for the rest of the day and a special big thanks to Jo who swapped her training session with me for driving me into the hospital!

Before surgery I had the briefing from the anesthetist and surgeon.  They were great and talked me through everything that was going to happen and answered any questions I had.  It seems this surgery will let my achilles tendon handle more force, but there is a slight increase in risk of it going again.  So I’m going to have to be serious about my rehab, progress gradually and start being a bit sensible with my jumps and landings (but only a bit, obviously!)

In I went at about 1:30, all the people being absolute bloody stars.  As usual for me, the worst bit was when I had that thing put into your hand so they can drug you up (what do they call that??)  But luckily they kept me chatting and distracted all the way through.  Next thing was being given a mask with oxygen, being told to take a couple of deep calming breaths…..then I woke up afterwards!  It was about 4:30.

I was talking to the nurse who was there when I came round, but can’t remember what I was saying.  My guess is I was talking bollocks, but that’s just because that’s my usual habit.  At some point I was moved back into my little room for me to come round properly, and I guess I fell asleep loads again, because I remember thinking “wow, it’s half past 6 already!”

The surgeon came in to check up on me and have a chat.  It seems about 98% of my achilles had snapped.  Only a “couple of little threads” were holding it together.  Which was lucky, because otherwise the flapping loose ends can dissappear up your leg and it’s a bugger for them to fish them back down!

But now the 2 ends of my tendon are stiched back together and I’m back in a pot.  Oh yeah, and this pot is apparently 4 times as stong as my last one…I had broken the one I had put on Thursday!

So the idea now is to keep my foot in the “equinus” position.  Basically, with the foot pointed downwards and the most amount of slack on the achilles itself.  This will give it chance to heal without ripping itself apart when its stretched or moved.  Every couple of weeks or so, I go in for a new pot, with a slightly less pointed foot, so gradually increasing the range of motion in my ankle.  But because it will still be kept absolutely still, I will still need blood thinning drugs to help minimise chance of blood clots.  Apparently, without these meds, chances of blood clots are about 50%.  And if a blood clot moves from down in the leg, then I can be in serious trouble.

If it travels to my heart I could have a heart attack or it travels to my brain I could have a stroke.  So…even though I BLOODY HATE having these injections every day, I’m not going to be an idiot and miss them.  And on that note, a HUGE thank you to Anna for stabbing me each day…I really don’t think I could do it myself.

Pre-op That thing in your hand Sexy stockings! Pump to drain stuff from the wound. Sexy leg!

I was told I could go home as soon as I was recovered and could pass water!  Apparently, being put under stops you pissing, so I needed to make sure I could do that and all was good.  So this is why I ended up drinking nearly 3 liters of water trying to make myself have a piss!

Anyway, to bring things to a close, I was eventually able to go home with another 3 weeks worth of needles for Anna to stab me with.  And again, a HUGE thank you to Anna who got me home and basically made sure I wasn’t going to die.

And a HUGE thank you to Paige who was on speed dial in case my leg fell off through the night 🙂

In the end, I didn’t need her to come round and save me.  Instead, I was able to look after myself and get myself to the loo 6 times through the night, pissing out all the water I drank earlier!  Bloody hell!

One last minor thing…hiccups!  I can’t get rid of them!  But after a quick google, it seems anaesthesia can cause hiccups, so when my system is cleared, things should be better.  But boy, they are annoying!  🙂

So it’s the following morning now as I write this.  And the local painkillers that were pumped into my foot have worn off and I am feeling the first pain of this entire injury.  So I’m going to go take some pain killers and say another thank you to everyone who has been so supportive over the last week.  All your messages have been lovely, thank you all so much!