Injury Timeline


Thursday, August 4, 2016

1 Year Post-Op Visit

This day has finally come!

I had my one year post-op visit with Dr. Van Boeurm at TOSH this week.  I got really positive news and I am feeling so relieved after the appointment.  I have to admit, I was really nervous/anxious in the days leading up to the visit.  Was everything healing like it was supposed to?  Do I have arthritis already?  Is he going to tell me I need another surgery to re-align a bone that has gotten out of whack?  Have I been pushing it too hard with my workouts causing damage?  What's next?

It felt really weird to be back at TOSH, because I think my last visit was in February?  4 months is the longest I've gone without seeing the doctor and his staff.  I guess they trusted me not to screw my foot up too much in that amount of time.  I laughed because while I was waiting to see the doctor, I checked in on Facebook from my phone, it asked a couple of questions about TOSH so Facebook could learn more about it.  "Does this place have Wi-Fi available?"  "Are you at a restaurant?"  "Is this a good place for dancing?"  Dancing?!  If you are at TOSH, you are probably not doing any dancing.  In fact, it's probably an anti-dance establishment.

Anyway, finally I got called back, sat in the Dr's office for a few minutes and then got called for x-rays.  I've had.. I don't know.. 5 x-rays at least on my foot here, so the first thing I did when I got into the x-ray room was announce that I was not pregnant, just to clear that up.  Because she asks every single time.  I know she has to.  I got my normal set of x-rays taken; three pictures, all weight bearing with my foot in different positions.  I remember getting x-rays was always kind of painful, because I would be barefoot putting weight on my foot.  It would always ache afterwards.  But this time, it was just totally normal, and I didn't have any pain at all.  It was hard for me to believe that this was actually painful and stressful at one time.



I was told the doctor would be in to see me next.  However, while I was waiting, a surgeon ran back into Dr. Van Boerum's office looking for him.  He had a trauma patient that was just in a rollover car accident and needed his help.  I don't know exactly what happened to the poor guy who was in the accident, only that his blood pressure was dangerously high and that it was a bad accident.  There was a large projection screen in the front room where they quickly loaded up his x-rays and CT scans, and the two surgeons were talking it over.  I couldn't really hear anything but I could see the x-ray and the scans, and there were obvious serious fractures, bones going in all kinds of wonky ways.  It was scary.  I actually kind of felt comforted that Dr. Van Boerum was helping.  He is for sure amazing.  I don't know the fate of the gentleman in the accident, but I hope he's OK.

Finally, Dr. Van Boerum came to see me, and I reminded him that I was the Spartan girl.  He was so pleased with how my foot has healed!  He tested range of motion for my navicular fracture and was genuinely surprised at how much range I had.  He said that normally people with navicular fractures, especially like how bad mine ended up being, never get this level of motion back.  All my other bones in my Lisfranc joint have healed wonderfully and are all lined up like they are supposed to.    I don't really have any signs of arthritis yet, except for a small space between my navicular (in the above, the bone that has the bright metal plate over it) and talus bones.  He also confirmed that the plate and screws over my navicular bone will stay in place permanently.  The navicular just does not get enough blood supply to be able to heal on it's own the way it should, and it is risky to remove the hardware.  It doesn't bother me too much, other than I can feel it when I poke around my foot, and I can visibly see the bump where the plate is.  The only time it ever bothers me is when a storm is coming.  I'm more accurate than a meteorologist by most standards.  Hey... I always wanted to be a meteorologist !

He also cleared me to RUN SHORT DISTANCES!!!  Like a 5K.  In moderation.  No marathons.  I'm just fine with that news!  It is better than his firm stance of "NO RUNNING EVER UNLESS YOU ARE GOING TO BE HIT BY A BUS" in the past.  He recommended that I still take up biking, hiking, or swimming as kind of my main exercise and to steer clear of any hard impacts/jumping still.  

I still do have some pain in my big toe area (he referred to it as 1st MTP Joint) when coming up or pushing off on my toes.  He recommended that a stiff-soled shoe, or even a trail running shoe would help out with that.  And arch supports will still help, like my Superfeet.  Then our conversation kind of drifted off into talking about his hiking/climbing trip to the Grand Tetons, and I told him about Nate and I's trip to King's Peak.

He said that typically the one year mark is where most of my improvements will be, and that's kind of where my foot is going to be, as far as healing goes.  It will most likely plateau between 12-18 months post-op, and then I might see some minor improvements after that.  Then, he just shook our hands and told me that the foot is looking good.  And bye!

So... that was it?  No follow-up appointments to schedule.  No more check-ups.  Just to come in if something changes or if I start getting a lot of pain.  I guess I'm kind of an adult now.



I do have some fitness goals.  I will do a Spartan race again.  It will most likely be heavily modified, and there will be some skipped obstacles.  Anyone scoffing at that or any of you Spartan purists can very nicely go EAD.  You have no idea what I've been through this year.

I will summit King's Peak.

I will do Ragnar.  Someday.

I still blubber sometimes, mainly when I'm watching sports-y team things.  Or seeing someone getting injured and the team rallying around them (Spartan Ultimate Team Challenge, anyone?).  I wish the injury wouldn't have happened.  But there are no regrets.  I went through a year of hell and here I am on the other side.  

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about my injury.  I have some sort of pain or discomfort everyday.  Whether that is feeling stiff in the mornings, or trying to go down a set of stairs, or feeling like my foot is some alien otherworldly being from "Stranger Things"...But really it is not that big of deal, not anything I can't tolerate, and it doesn't stop me or even slow me down on doing a lot of the things I want to do.

My promise though is that I will keep updating, and checking in with everyone who has followed me for this last year!

Lots of love, and thank you all for your support,

CC  

3 comments:

  1. Hi CC,
    Welcome to the other side. Brilliant to hear of your hospital appointment. I just keep remembering the people of LF facebook who are not healed or in significant pain several years on. We are very lucky given that we both had very significant LF injuries. Mine has been really good, hadn't even been thinking about it, really proud of walks on rough terrain THEN a week ago I got out of the car and could not put my weight on it! Surgery and Rehab went through my head Yuk. I realised it was from kneeling down on the floor, with foot bent backwards and my weight on it while I was clearing out a cupboard the day before. Been to physio it is on the mend. It felt like a reminder to treat it with respect even when it feels fully healed.

    Like you I have had the plate left in and it shows a little but unlike you I have not developed meteorlogical skills!

    Take care and enjoy your freedom. Karen Copsham X

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  2. CC
    I want to thank you for your dedicated blogging. I don't have an LF injury, just a torn tibialis and broken navicular bone and it's been so frustrating! One week I'm half-marathoning, the next week I'm netflixing like a champ. Honestly the most encouraging thing has been to look at your timeline. I'm 5 months in and sometimes it seems like things are great and others it seems I've made no progress at all, I'm at that place. Anyway, so happy that you are back to running. My PT has some goals for me that may have me running again in January. Fingers crossed!

    Thank you,

    Tracie

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    Replies
    1. Oh, Tracie. Thank you for reading! "Just a torn tibialis and a broken navicular bone" - that is nothing to make light of! My doctor always told me that my navicular was the worst part of the injury, even worse than the lisfranc joint because of how much that little bone is responsible for. I haven't found a lot of people that have broken their navicular, so I think it is a whole other monster.

      I thought I would be way farther in my progress than I was at 5 months, but, it will come I promise :) I always have good days and bad days, and when I really started to see improvement it was when I would have more of the good days than of the bad. But I am still thinking about my foot everyday, and not a day goes by that I'm not reminded of my injury. But, I've just kind of learned to live with it and that's just my life now! (Not complaining - I am totally fine with that!!)

      Recovery is also not linear...it always felt like 2 steps forward, 1 step back for the longest time. I think it still kind of is, even a year later.

      Hang in there - and good luck with your recovery.

      If I could ask, how did you break your navicular? I haven't had any of my readers mention that bone before so I am really curious!

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