I had my first post-surgical appointment this morning, and I received good news and bad news.
The good news is that my leg seems to be healing well, with no sign of infection or other post-surgical complication. Since this is the main downside of surgery versus non-surgical treatment, it looks like the decision to have immediate surgery is paying off.
The bad news is that my doctor told me that he could not recommend that I go on my family vacation to Japan. I’m recovering well, but given my surgery and immobilization, I am still at risk for deep vein thrombosis (DVT), and I am still in the thick of the healing process. As he put it, “You could go, and you might be fine, but I can’t recommend it. You could take blood thinners to reduce the risks, and still get a pulmonary embolism.”
This is a big disappointment for me and my family, since we had been planning this trip for a long time. Alisha and the kids will go without me, and my incredible parents will come up to the Bay Area once again to take care of me while they are gone. (Fortunately, my parents’ visit was already planned, since the original plans called for them to watch our dog Misty and enjoy a vacation in the Bay Area while we were in Japan.)
Anyone with good advice on what I should do about my round-trip tickets (American Airlines), I’m all ears.
The doctor removed my splint and put me in a walking boot, though I’m still non-weight-bearing (NWB, in the lingo of Achilles insiders) at least until my next surgical visit. I’m also now allowed to take showers with a leg sleeve to keep my boot dry, which will be a huge benefit, and to sit in a real chair when my body can take it. Just being able to type outside of bed has been a huge lift to my spirits. I’m not cut out for lying in bed all day, even when BBC America is running a Star Trek marathon. I can’t believe the “Spock’s Brain” episode made the cut; it is notoriously one of the worst episodes of all time! I also think that Terminator marathons should not be allowed to show anything other than Terminator 1 and 2; 3, Salvation, and Genisys are decidedly sub-par efforts. Finally, whoever decided to air an Expendables marathon is clearly a sadist.
The light at the end of the tunnel for recovery is that I may be able to return to driving and full mobility in 5-6 weeks. I’ve still got a long way to go, but everything seems more bearable when I’m not trapped in my bed.
For now, it’s time for another week of healing and recovery at home. Wish me luck, and here’s hoping I have some good news to share after my next doctor’s appointment.