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Comment : Week 7
Posted by Sue3 on Mon 3:51pm 12 May 2014

PT had a cancellation! FANTASTIC! I showed him how I have been flexing, rotating and wiggling. There is only a 4 degree difference between my good and broken leg when it came to flexing up (right angle). He showed me some leg exercises (lifts, clamshells, side lifts, back lifts) and also how to massage the scar, gently, to break up the scar tissue. Place your right hand on top of your left, palms down. Now use the fingertips of your right hand to gently move the skin over the bones of your left hand. Thatís about how much pressure I was told to use. He also told me to practice standing.

I remembered to bring in printouts of the surgeonís chart notes from my medical chart for the PT. That helped a lot. Today the PT had me stand on my broken leg for the first time. This stage is called ďassisted weight bearingĒ which means Iím in an Aircast (CAM walker) boot whenever I put weight on my broken leg.

The first time I tried, I was able to put nearly 50% of my weight on my broken leg!!! I was so happy! My PT was also very pleased, saying I was further along in recovery than he had anticipated. 50% means I could stand up on two legs for the first time in 8 weeks. Hence my next assignment. ďPractice standingĒ.

Practice standing. Sounds very zen, doesnít it? It _is_ very zen. Itís very strange to finally put pressure on a foot and leg that you have been banned from using for two months. A lot of things need to be relearned, even though you may not be consciously aware of it (hence the zen). Also your body needs to relearn a lot of things, especially things like: how to take care of a foot that gets pressure put on it. I had to learn how standing felt again. How my foot felt when it connected to the ground. I think about how my foot really doesnít touch the ground, but the atoms of my foot repel the atoms of my floor which provide the sensation of how my foot feels like it is pressing against the ground. Itís good to think of something interesting when you are practicing standing.

I stand. I show everyone at work that I can stand. I show my husband and my mom and my dog that I can stand! I stand and I breathe and I feel and wiggle my foot in my Aircast boot. Initially, I feel shooting pain in my heel, like someone is driving a nail straight up into it, but it goes away after a minute. I am told that is because you lose the fat pad under your heel with you are NWB (non-weight bearing). I imagine that those shooting pains are all the little fat cells yelling about being squished and demanding more cushioning.

See, by now everything is completely out of whack. There is muscle atrophy so your leg isnít as strong as youíd think, even though you may _feel_ just fine. Putting pressure on your heel for the first time feels like stepping on one of those shiatsu foot massage mats. It isnít painful per sae, but it does hurt, as you spread your weight out over your heel. All those nerve ending start firing like mad and theyíre super sensitive because they havenít been used in a while.

Taking a shower or bath, my foot and leg is more sensitive to hot and cold water, especially around the incisions, bottom of the foot, and toes. Iím just grateful I can feel it at all. Neuropathy of the foot was my biggest fear. There are a lot of capillaries that have been damaged and need to be rebuilt. The human body is an absolutely amazing thing, to be able to regrow bone, clean up bruises and heal incisions.

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 Mon 3:51pm 12 May 2014
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