Thursday, May 22, 2014

Total Ankle Replacement: 24 Weeks Post-Op--Ankle #2

If anyone is following this blog because they are interested in my progress, and you are looking for some updated stats...look at last months stats and add five pounds to the knee machine and ten pounds to the leg press machine. That's all the progress that I've made in four weeks time :(

This week marks 24 weeks since I had my total ankle replacement on ankle #2. Ankle #1 is almost at the year mark (June 12). Last month I talked about how I don't feel anywhere near “normal”, and I'm starting to think that I'm never going to even come close to that at all. The past four weeks have been very depressing as I've realized that I've plateaued in my recovery for the last couple of months. Now, I've had plateaus happen before with other surgeries, but it's usually for just two weeks or so. Looking back at my progress in my March posts, I realize that although I've gained more strength in my legs, I haven't gained any endurance at all. At all. I can't stand on my feet longer than ten minutes without being in a terrible amount of pain. I'm starting to think that this isn't going to get any better.

Whenever I mention this to anyone, they remind me that I'm only about six months out and this can take a year to eighteen months to fully recover. But I'm almost at a year with my left ankle (#1)! And that is not any better than my right! They are in the same level of shitty pain!

Getting fed up.

I've had both hips and both knees replaced, so this replacement thing is not new to me (I told ya I was a cyborg!). I know that rehab is painful, but after it's done, the benefits can be life altering. My hips were so bad that after I had my replacement surgery I felt like I hit the jackpot. The replacement hips were new and improved and better than the originals (they took about 3 months to rehab). And although my knee replacements were a bitch to far the worst pain I've ever encountered....the trade off was that I was pain free after all was said and done. The biggest downside to my knee replacements was that I lost a lot of range of motion (ROM). This is always a possibility, and I knew that going in for my ankle replacements. But I was willing to trade off ROM for no such luck. My ROM for my ankles is within normal range, but there is still so much pain whenever I stand or walk.

I'm not scheduled to see my surgeon until July. I think I may call just to ask if I should be worried, or if I need to be seen sooner. Can't hurt to ask, right? Only thing is...what if they tell me that this may be it for me? I've been so depressed over the past few weeks, that I don't know if I want to hear bad news right now.

Both the hips and knees, after rehab, gave me a (mostly) pain free existence in those joints (there's the occasional "I feel the rain coming"). I just assumed that I'd have a similar experience with my ankles. This is not the case, yet, and I'm starting to lose hope.

To read about my full ankle replacement journey, please click on the Total Ankle Replacement tab.  

I'm happy to answer any questions that you may have.  Please comment below, or email me privately at:


  1. Yikes. I don't know anything about that sort of thing, but I wonder if you could be pushing too hard to recover? Maybe it's sore? That would definitely be frustrating. I hope you get some relief soon.

    1. I mustered the courage to make an appointment to see my surgeon in a couple of weeks. Hopefully he will have some answers! Thank you for the kind words!

  2. Oh, I feel your pain. I'm so sorry to hear you're suffering like this. All I can say is I'm praying for you, and rooting for you, and I understand the frustration of chronic, severe pain. Have you considered a pain management specialist? I saw one for about 7 years until I found Feldenkrais. Whatever you choose, I hope it works. You do need some relief. The chronic pain/depression/chicken/egg thing is a bitch.
    Good for you for making an appointment, and thanks so much for keeping us updated, even when you're feeling this discouraged.
    Tina @ Life is Good
    On the Open Road! @ Join us for the 4th Annual Post-Challenge Road Trip!