I will have brain surgery standing on only one foot!
I was in surgery today but at the other end of my body. My ruptured achilles tendon was (finally) repaired today!
I ruptured the achilles tendon on my right leg the same week as my first neurological exams in August. I went to hurling practice with the DC Gaels and joined a scrimmage game. I was not expecting to play that night so I did not properly stretch and warm-up. I sprinted after a ball and felt a pop in my right calf. I knew immediately that it was a ruptured achilles. The emergency room was able to confirm this SIX hours later at 2 AM.
I went to an ortho the next day. He scheduled a surgery to repair it the next week. Usually this type of surgery needs to be done within a few weeks of the injury. Before that surgery could take place my golf ball was discovered. The ortho cancelled the surgery and wanted to wait until after my craniotomy. He also considered just casting my leg and letting scar tissue mesh the ruptured ends together. (Longer recovery and greater chance of reinjury but no surgery).
Long story short, we went with a different Ortho. The new Doc was recommended by the neurosurgeon. We met the new ortho who conferred with the neurosurgeon and we got the go ahead for leg surgery today! It was the neurosurgeon who recommended getting the leg done first.
Marcie and I were at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda at 5:30 AM this morning. We were very impressed with the facilities. More importantly, we met with the anesthesiologist who had spoken face to face with the neurosurgeon. He was able to reassure us that all information was shared and they had a plan that satisfied all three doctors. Special precautions were made to ensure no rise in cranial pressure during the surgery. I was in surgery for about an hour and came through with no ill effects. I recovered for a couple of hours and was home by 11:30.
I am in a splint and using crutches. The splint and stitches will stay on for two weeks. At that point I will get a walking cast. I have some mild discomfort but the pain pills are a welcome addition.
Note to "weekend warriors": An achilles rupture is common among people in my age range (35+) who do not work out as often as they should. Most often, someone joins a basketball, soccer, tennis, etc. game without stretching and warming up properly. That tendon is not as flexible as when they were younger. A quick push-off to make a move, lunge for a ball, or burst to begin a sprint can cause that tendon to tear. It makes a loud pop and feels like you have been hit in the back of the leg. Moral of the story: Take the time to warm up and stretch!