A week on, so far so good

So we’re at the one week mark already, how time flys when you’re having fun.

The past week has been quite the roller coaster, most people in their lifetime would seem themselves as unlucky if they have surgery once in their life. I fronted up for round two a year and week later.

This time around i’ve got off a bit easier, it’s just the forefoot part that doesn’t like me right now. This means that I can for the most point heel-strike walk.

I’ve been trying to do without crutches and in reality my gait and balance are kicked so far out of kilter I have no choice to use crutches or over longer distances the knee walker. If I walk without crutches I stress other parts of my body which is bad as that may lead to injury. There was talk of dropping to once crutch, this won’t work either my balance is soooo out.

It’s been about a 5 week process to go from first surgical consult to surgery. Far better than last time. I’m really hanging out for suture removal, I’d like to see what scars I’m going to be left and to try and get my toes moving again.

My foot is heavily bandaged and that causes its own problems.

Right now I’m not permitted to put the operated limb on the floor without the post op shoe on.

That means should I wake over night, if I want to go to the loo I either have to go non weight bearing or put the shoe on and then go.

Showering is now also a major drama. I have to place the foot in a bag and then shower siting down.

I first experienced this last year (having to shower sitting down) it’s an odd sensation but when it’s the only way to clean yourself then you jump at it. I got all emotional last year, I had a shower chair delivered the day after day surgery. I’d been through a rough time and just being able to shower comfortably and safely meant so much.

The only problem I have right now is sleeping. I’m going to attribute that to the stress of my father coming home.

I’m still hyper emotional right now, I think that has to do with the aggressive pain management that was administered when the nerve block wore off.

I had an independent coup, using my father’s power wheelchair I got myself to the local shopping centre. Quite an achievement which I’m so proud of myself.

I think this time around I’m struggling mentally and physically. With my father ill for what will be 7 weeks in hospital on Saturday his return home is not the end of the situation.

My Father will require ongoing care for the next few months.

Any how I’m confident we’ll both make good recoveries.

Until next time.


Day 3

So this morning I woke up feeling fairly good, pain isn’t a big issue and I’ve managed with largely over the counter meds which this early on is amazing.

Rang my Physio’s reception today I’m feeling sore in my legs again and I’d like to re-visit what I can do at home. To my surprise they are now open on Saturday afternoon. That was awesome the first appointment offered was 9:30am which was half an hour away and I hadn’t showered yet nor had a ride.
So went with 2:30 which was just brilliant. I can’t remember what I did in the morning apart from take my time having breakfast and showering. After stacking it yesterday I had to take things slowly.

Was nice to sit in the shower and have the warm water run over me, having a mixer tap means once the water heats up it’s always the same temperature which is great.

Manged to angle myself with the kneewalker so I could stand and shave, that was amazing.

Not sure what else I did, but cooked a stirufry lunch and then sharon and kirsty took me to my phsyio.

Everyone loved the knee walker no one had seen them before. Although they really don’t like uneaven footpaths, and I was worried about stacking it around the physio office. The footpaths are terrible like that.

Anyhow got in and had a consult, did a review some treatment and then my Physio reviewed my stance on the walker and deemed I was too high (which I always had questions about) was so please she was prepared to look at something she had no involvement in previously.

Headed home for a rest.

Had lite ‘n’ ezy meal tonight that wasn’t too bad, I think for the moment it will be cooked/ handmade lunches and zapped dinners.

Before surgery I had not prepared one lunch or dinner meal at home (or even zapped it) I’ve not eaten take-away since tuesday night, not bad!

Been a good day potting around the house and journal-ling.

Pain today is well managed and only really taken paracetamol although I’m getting really bad twinges now, so will take one heavier one so I can sleep.

Physio says I have good range in my feet/ toes all things considered so i need to focus on that.

Today I can PWB a bit, but it’s best that I don’t right now so heeling can begin. Scar tissue will form once where I had bone and I need to ensure that tissue moves.

I feel as though things are going well and  could go back to work on Monday but I know I have to rest my feet as they quickly get sore.

I’m moving between the lounge and bedroom, in an attempt to avoid cabin fever.

I’ve got a few pre-recorded foxtel shows I should what, that will be good. Enough for one day, time to sleep.

Discharge – Day 2

My blog is going to be a little out of kilter as I attempt to catch up events of the last few weeks and now I blog about my recovery.

Two days ago I had a Sesamoidecty of my right foot and 1st mtp arthroplasty I’m yet to blog about the first 24 hours. I’ll have to blog soon before I forget.

So for the moment there will be massive gaps.

Today started off fairly well I finally managed to sleep reasonably well until I was woken around 05:30 for obs. Now I know the nurses have a role to perform and I need to let them do their work. Because I have sleep apnea I wear a mask a full face one at that. So it’s virtually impossible to hold a conversation wearing one, it’s just easier to remove it.

So when I awoke they ask for my pain score which I said I had to think about for a moment as I had virtually been jolted awake.

I said about 6 as it was starting to get fairly sore, they said did you want something for it? After the fun of yesterday I was written up for virtually everything. I really wanted to go home today and the only way that was happening was for my pain to be under control. For that to happen I couldn’t take any pain relief that wasn’t available to me on discharge.

So I picked carefully!

Breakfast was late which was annoying. The day nurse had already come in and introduced herself and said her job was to help kick me out of hospital. I was all to happy for that to happen and she did everything she could to help.

For me I badly needed food and when breakfast arrived it was such a relief. As this was likely the last time I’d see the kitchen staff I thanked her for her service. The food had been amazing.

She thanked me for my compliments and commented on how much better I seemed today.

Breakfast was toast, ceral , juice and cuppa tea.

Large breakfast but I needed the energy!

Once that was done it was time to shower, shave (I didn’t shave yesterday) and get into clothes! for most of Wednesday I was in a hospital gown and finally changed into PJ’s after yesterday’s shower.

Showering without being able to weight bear on one leg is actually quite a challenge, as is getting disrobed and clothed!

Shaving while unable to stand shouldn’t be that hard but you have to get the height right so you can see yourself and get reach to the basin.

Thankfully hospital bathrooms are setup with well placed grab bars.

I was more stable today and got the hops under control.

Managed to get dressed rather well.

Headed back into the room and collected everything.

Packed myself up and then waited to be collected.

My brother-in-law came with his daughter to pick me up.

I started to NWB on my right leg and move around on elbow crutches and the nurse asked if I wanted a wheelchair to the car. She was concerned as I hadn’t been outside my room (i’m under instruction to stay off my feet for the first few days) so I need to be careful.

Given I had no idea where my ride was parked and we were upstairs it was time to play it safe. Was odd being in a wheelchair, I’m used to being the one who does the pushing.Any how the car is a large family car, and I easily got in.

Sadly I’ve had plenty of practice getting in and out of cars with crutches, it’s a bit like a bike (using crutches that is)

I needed to fill a script so of to the chemist I headed. It was offered for my script to be filled for me but I wanted to fill it myself.

There is something satisfying about doing things for yourself, but there are times you have to ask for help.

I always go to the same chemist where I can and the staff member who served me remembered that I had problems last year.

I got my script and we headed home.

Was nice being outside after being stuck inside for 48 hours.

When I got home the house was cold and I quickly fired up the aircon to take the chill off.

I thanked Brett & Kiristy (my ride) for getting me home and I wished them farewell.

I had pr-arranged for home aids to be delivered (bed cradle, bed back rest and shower stool) I rang the supplier yesterday saying I wasn’t sure if I was coming home from hospital. to my surprise when I rang him he said he’d swap what he was going and he was at my door in under 20 minutes.

The most exciting part of the equipment supplied is called a Knee Walker, it’s something I wish I had known about last year. It would have made a world of difference! I’ll post separately about this, but it’s made such a difference!

Spent the day swapping between bed and the lounge room. Not able to rest much right now, still too much excitement about being home.

Had a pre packed ceasar salad and apple for lunch. After lunch I out smarted myself and fell off the knee walker on our front door step landing on the concrete, that wasn’t fun and I was dam lucky how i fell. I rolled and didn’t put my arms out to save me and my operated leg protected thank goodness. So it was clear to me I was trying to do to much and getting a bit over excited. So I went inside sorted out my bed and rested.

I’ve got Foxtel and put on one of the music stations was a nice way to pass the time.

Had lite n ezy for dinner and watched a bit of tv and started to blog/ write a bit.  It’s now a little after 11pm and I need to sleep.

Going to give myself the weekend NWB on the right foot and try slowly to PWB I’m waiting for the pain to reduce a bit. I’ve already reduce the dosage of pain killers which is good.

Consent to Operative Treatment:- Surgery Take 2 (Just like last time)

consentSo the pressure of daily life got in the way of me blogging regularly.  Time for a massive update.

Over the past 6+ months I’ve had increasing foot pain mainly in my right foot. Two changes of orthodics since ankle surgery a year ago, things weren’t getting better.

Podiatrist wasn’t happy with my progress and sent me off for an x-ray & ultrasound. Scans revealed arthritis in both feet. Bone spurs and fragments and inflamed sessamoids in the right foot.

Podiatrist told me if things don’t get better I’m headed back to see my orthopedic surgeon. Given my experience of last year I went to my GP and ask for a referral. I wanted to have all my options in front of me.

GP was a bit taken a back that someone of my age would need to see an orthopedic again and remarked that it’s normally once and your done. So he said oh well go see James just like last time.

Surgeon was convinced he could help me but wanted an MRI to confirm. MRI really didn’t show anything we didn’t already know, just helped to clarify.

At the first consult there was only talk of a general tidy up. At the second consult it wasn’t that straight forward.

Anyhow the decision was to go in and remove both sesamoids in my right foot and clean up the spurs and fragments in my first MTPJ. In non medical terms, remove some small pea shaped bones in the ball of my foot and clean up the mess in the first toe joint.

As you’d expect careful consideration was taken in me signing up for more surgery. After the problems last yeah I was very apprehensive. It’s when you sign a form to operative treatment that you start to get flash backs to last time.

Last time for me wasn’t good, I knew that this time had to be better than last time.

Sure in the end I got a good result (for the ankle injury) it was a long hard earnt result.

This time around after weighing up the factors it was time to be decisive.

I’ve got a very understanding employer but even the most understanding managers do query when your looking at heading back to surgery so quickly. I needed to commit to a timeframe and I’m confident that unlike last time this will be fine.

I’ve not updated this blog in a while as I didn’t think appropriate to share my situation publicly until I knew exactly what was going on.

My orthopedic surgery is a really great guy, very experienced and skilled (just what you want in a surgeon!) He very clearly explains himself and that is always re-assuring.

Once a surgical path was decided many comments about “just like last time” came up. Both from the surgeon and his P.A., my GP made similar comments.

There really shouldn’t be “another time” when it comes to surgery, as I’ve explained to quite a few people surgery is a “when your out of non surgical options”  and we’d reached that point.

Unlike last time, I knew what my treatment options were early. I made a firm decision to go down one path. This was almost like last time as it was the same surgeon the only difference was he was and would be the only surgeon I would consult on the matter.

So that’s the path to surgery, I’m typing this entry of the first day home after coming out of hospital.

Further updates will come as I reflect.