Wednesday, July 15, 2009

4 week x-rays - Healing day 32

Today was my half way there (hopefully) visit to TOSH. The doc I met with was not the same Dr Drew I met with in June. This concerned me at first since this new guy, Perry Hall had not seen or examined my foot at the initial visit. How would he know how much progress I'd really made? Well I'm still a little concerned with that, but apparently each individual exam is really important. How much pain I feel when they press on different points of the bone tells them almost everything. In Perry's words "I could look at pictures all day, it's the exam that tells me more". He was really cool and was actually someone recommended to me now that I think about it. He spent a lot of time with me, asked me what questions I had, and he's a cyclist so I feel he understood and related to me well. He didn't look at me strange when I said I want to get running as soon as possible and race in September, he actually discussed it with me.
So onto the healing. When we pulled the x-rays up I immediately noticed the fracture looked darker and wider. Crap! Not complete cause for concern though. Apparently fractures can heal with some inflamation (that's not quite right, can't remember what word he used), and the bigger space we see contains scar tissue taking its place there.
The fracture is the line to the left of the mouse arrow. Click on the picture to enlarge it and it should be more clear.
But can you see the thin bridge on the outside of the bone? That really is bone and that's where bones heal first, so that was good to see. Again, you're probably going to have to click on the picture to see it.
And here is the x-ray from the first appointment, 5 days after the accident. Interesting how that tiny little thing that was missed during the initial day of x-ray caused so much pain.
Here are the cool deciscan's they take. We didn't look at them, but I thought they were cool showing so much tissue and where the bones sit in the foot and leg. They pull up all the x-rays up on the computer, pretty cool technology there at TOSH.
Ok, so here's the verdict. The swelling is basically gone, and I didn't jump out of my seat when he pressed on my foot. I can walk pain free most of the time in the boot, and there's at least a bridge forming on the outside of the fracture. While we want the whole bone to heal over with bone, it may not happen. 6 months down the road, if it does heal over completely it should be permanently stable, but I could experience chronic soreness in that foot and would have to be careful not to change my gait (running form) to compensate for the pain. That's not guarenteed to happen, he just wanted to make me aware.
There's not a lot I can do to increase the healing, just give it time and take my vitamins. He also encouraged more activity. Some stress on the bone is good for it, but in Perry's words "If it's hurting, it's not healing" He thinks I'm good to get back on the bike as long as I don't stand in the saddle and just ride on flats. He also thinks I can lose the pull buoy and try kicking, as well as try the eliptical! Not bad eh? Weight training is fine too as long as it's with the boot on and doesn't apply too much weight. The biggest weight training change is that I can do leg presses in the boot as long as I don't lift more than my weight. Still no calf raises though :( My right calf is looking pretty pathetic.
Not all great news though. That 2 mile run I thought I'd start with next month? Nope, not that far, gotta start smaller. But alas, it appears I am healing. I go back in another month, hopefully things only look better.
And you know, as excited as I am to get the ok to do more, I'm also nervous. Mostly nervous to get back on my bike and try to clip out (no twisting of the ankle, that would hurt big time) or put the foot down or crash or something. A nice man I talked with at Rockcliff told me of his experience after rupturing his Achilles tendon (big time injury). He said he was always worried he'd get hurt again, so he wasted 5 years of his kids lives not doing the skiing and other activities they had once enjoyed. He told me not to be so scared that I don't go out and do what I love. I'll try to take his advice. I'll probably ride in the safe controlled environment of my basement on the trainer for the next week, then hopefully venture outside. Sure would be nice to ride with people, I feel more secure that way. Anyone wanna come on some easy flat spins with me?


Nurse Heidi said...

I'm slow, but I'll go with you. Why oh why did I buy a mountain bike??

Megan said...

Progress is progress, right? Good luck with easing back into things. That's nice that you can do leg presses but no more than your weight. So that's what, like 90 pounds or something? :)

Sara said...

I know you're already up to 50 miles again, but anytime you want I'll ride with you.