After nearly three months off my feet, actually one foot, the surgeon who inserted a rod and a bunch of staples into my left ankle gave me the go-ahead to begin bearing weight on that side! This is very exciting! I’ve banished the knee scooter and, in its place, now there are a cane, a quad cane, and a walker borrowed from my mom.
The instructions given by the doctor were to start with 25% of weight, offsetting the rest with cane or walker and then move up 10-20% every few days. Are you kidding me? I cannot gauge a 10-20% increase. Oh, and wear the boot for a couple more weeks. Walking independently after a month would be the result of following the plan. He explained that the ankle is well-healed and won’t be hurt by walking; the pain will be from the muscles and tissues as they respond to activity after being out of service for several weeks.
Truth be told, I haven’t worn the boot for a few weeks. I didn’t bear weight on the injured side but wore no aircast. While I didn’t break the rule by using my left foot to walk, I did test out standing on it this last week. The day before and the morning of the doctor appointment, I did do some short stints. Felt a little tingly and a bit sore but not bad.
When I got home, I did try walking with the cane first but found myself carrying the cane and just walking because it was much faster. Besides, I mostly do short walks to the bathroom or kitchen. I tried the walker and it seemed a better way to control the weight on my left leg. It’s wide and clanky in the halls of my home, hardly worth the trouble. I did recommit myself to wearing a boot and using a cane going forward.
The surgeon did say to listen to my body and stop when pain increased. What if it’s not painful? What if my body doesn’t tell me to stop? Can I just go for it? Why use the boot if my foot feels fine without? Control the weightbearing even if I”m fine with full weight? Am I a freak of nature who is magically able to go directly to walking independently when others describe taking a few months to ambulate on their own two feet?
This second day out, I have not used the boot but I have used a cane. I did go downstairs to start a load of laundry, but my husband was less than pleased when I told him. It’s just all so exciting!
Unfortunately, my knee hurts more than my lower leg, which disturbs me because the original fall felt like my knee had given out, causing me to go down. Not one practicioner has mentioned my knee; it never became swollen and hasn’t hurt since the dread event. It surprised me to feel a twinge there and scared the crap out of me. I am more concerned about falling again due to some unknown knee issue than I am of the pain I may experience from walking. I’ve ordered a knee support and I’m going to wear one of the three ankle supports I tried when I was treating it as a sprain. That is more comfortable, by far, than the boot.
Moving forward, literally, I’ll progress my walking duration and frequency as long as my ankle cooperates. So far, so good. I just cannot be the one in a million who are pain-free upon beginning mobility as soon as the okay is given for walking, right? Is it too good to be true? My plan is to move along unless the lower leg says, “Whoa!” I’ll let you know how it goes. Have a great weekend!
p.s. I am not a special case. Alas, my foot hurts quite a bit today when I stand/walk on it.