Post-Op – 3 Days After Surgery 12/13/12

Thought I’d do an update, now that surgery has come and gone.  My pre-op appointment was underwhelming.  The doctor who actually performed my surgery wasn’t in the office, and left it to someone else to prep me for surgery.  Which is fine, except this woman was far more interested in answering her phone in the middle of our appointment than she was in informing me what i needed to do.  When I called her back out of her next appointment to ask her about a different boot – the Vacocast – she pretty much confirmed my fear that this particular surgeon was a bit behind when it came to Achilles tendon repair: she basically said he is unwilling to entertain anything other than the neoprene monster he gave me.  Great.  Not the end of the world, it just means I have to buy the thing myself.

Mom flew in that afternoon to help me out.  I finished up work.  The team surprised me with a care package and a card with well wishes and kind thoughts.  It was really kind, and I was touched.  That evening, mom and I went to her favorite Vegas restaurant, Lotus of Siam.  I had a big meal, mostly because I wasn’t going to be able to eat from midnight on.  And thank god.

The next day, we show up for my 3PM surgery on time at 2:30.  They are apparently, quite backed up.  The receptionist tells me it’ll be an hour wait.  Now, I haven’t eaten since 10PM the night before.  Around 2PM, I’m getting pretty hungry.  At 5PM, when they finally call me back?  I’m ready to eat the face of the damn nurse.

They IVed me up, shaved my leg (it looks so smooth!), and after a few brief instructions for post-op, they put me on a gurney and wheeled me in.  The anesthesiologist does his thing and I pass out.

When I wake up, I’m actually being woken up by a nurse.  I thought this was odd, since they usually let you wake up yourself.  But since it was now 6:30PM, I guess they wanted to get out of there.  I was a little nauseous from the anesthetic, but no big deal.  More than anything, I was dizzy and drowsy.  They wheeled me out and I got into the car, and Mom drove me home (which was eventful; despite the GPS, she kept saying she had no idea where she was going).  I got into bed, and slept with the Cryocuff on.  An hour or two after we got home, the surgeon called me to ask how I was doing.  I told him it was pretty sore, and he told me that there was a 2 inch gap between the ends of my tendons, and that he had to “really crank” my foot to get them together again.  Well, ok then.

Yesterday, we went back to the surgery center to get the dressing off.  That was pretty painful, and I was afraid to look.  They gave me some simple toe exercises, but pretty much told me to stay off it, and keep it up.  Last night, I changed my dressing and took a peek at it.  Holy hell, it looks like they bolted on a new foot or something!

This shocked me the first time I saw it...

So far, I’ve managed without the pain narcotics, and have survived with only ibuprofen, aspirin, and the cryocuff.  Elevation has staved off most of the swelling.  I’m hoping that by the time the staples come out, this thing will be ready for some simple rehab.  I also ordered the Vacocast (on my own dime), and look forward to the comfort benefits that it will provide.

Mom is almost finished her week here, and I’ll be sorry to see her go.  She’s been a great help, cooking, refilling the Cryocuff, and generally helping me around the house.  I’m glad she’s made a bunch of food for me to just reheat for the next week.  I can’t say how thankful I am for her help (even if she did ding up one of my kitchen knives).

Well, until next time.

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