Friday, April 29, 2016

April 2016 Stitch Fix

Alice Blue Simona Henley Blouse
In light of scheduling my third (and please, final) ankle surgery, I decided to sign up for my first Stitch Fix. I'd actually registered for an account like two years ago, but had never pulled the trigger, but really needed an emotional boost and hoped that some cute new clothes would help.

Here's how Stitch Fix works. At its most basic, you pay a $20 styling fee, get matched with a stylist, let them know your style, and they send you five pieces whenever you request a fix based on your profile. If you buy any of those pieces, your styling fee gets refunded. Pretty simple, right?

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Modified Brostrom Ankle Surgery

I got the paperwork for my pre-operative physical, and I now officially know that the name of my surgery next month is a Modified Brostrom surgery. I tried very hard to find all of you some nice anatomical photos so you could see what exactly the surgery is but to no avail. This is the best one I could find.

Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery

As you can see there are different versions of the actual repair itself. I'm not 100% positive which version we will be doing. I will be calling the surgical center tomorrow to try to schedule a time to chat with the anesthesiologist about my migraines, and I will also be asking them for a few more details about this. My surgeon did say he would be borrowing tissue from a neighboring ligament, so perhaps it will be a graft?

In the meantime, I did find a very interesting slide presentation about the Modified Brostrom procedure. If you're not okay with seeing surgical photographs, even fairly mild ones which I would say these are, this link is not for you. But, if that doesn't bother you, it is pretty interesting to see at least one version of this surgery.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Chronic Ankle Sprain Surgical Repair

Well, there went my New Year's Resolution. I bet you didn't make it nearly this far with yours, did you! My resolution for 2016 was to make it through the year without any major surgeries, but alas it appears that I will not make it. On Monday, May 9, I will be having a "modified brostrum" surgery to reinforce the anterior talofibular ligament on the left ankle.

The good news here, because this is actually good news, is that the diagnosis is a lot less severe than we thought. Officially, a chronic sprain requiring surgical intervention. Rather surprisingly, the MRI showed no major tears in the ligament, which is really great. So, rather than having to do a major repair, we are reinforcing the anterior talofibular ligament using local tissue, going in through the same incision we used during the December 2014 All-American Surgery. He'll also clean out any scar tissue that is certainly not helping with the inflammation that has been building up in there.

I will be in a cast for about two weeks, in a walking boot for 2-4 weeks, and will get to head into physical therapy at 8 weeks post-op. The trick, of course, is that we aren't really sure right now on how quickly I'll be able to return to work. Hopefully no more than two weeks out, but my job in the summer requires a lot of mobility so I will just have to be careful with that.

The one downside, but honestly the thing that was no different before this whole chronic sprain, was that my ankle function will never be 100%. With this procedure, we're hoping to get it up to 75-90% functionality. He did say the two things we'll need to watch out for will be any future injuries (so we'll invest in a bubble, maybe?) and arthritis, but that is a bridge that we will cross when we get to it. As my mom said, time to get on taking those omega-3 supplements. I wonder if they make a chewable version...

There are, of course, a couple of upsides. One, we now live in a house instead of on the top floor of a three-story apartment. Huzzah for not having to climb three flights of stairs! Two, I get to pull my old peg-leg buddy the iWalk 2.0 back out of the basement and make small children think I am missing a limb! Three, I am an old hat at outpatient surgeries at this point, so I am really not too stressed at this point. not to say that I won't be stressed right before, but it won't be three weeks of stress, just a few days.

I'll try to post a couple of times about my process for getting ready for surgeries, which hopefully some of you find helpful! Plus, some post-surgical downtime on the couch should give me a chance to catch up on the rest of my Disney trip reviews!

Monday, April 11, 2016

MRI Follow-Up & My Pre-Surgical Questions

Well gang, we'll see what tomorrow brings. Two weeks ago I had (another) MRI of the left ankle, and tomorrow afternoon is my follow-up appointment with the ankle doc. In our last appointment, he was fairly certain I had a tear in my anterior talofibular ligament. At this point, it is really a question of to what degree. I've pretty much resigned myself to this being a surgical fix, which means that if tomorrow he says it isn't, I will be very pleasantly surprised.

Before any big doctor's appointment, it is a good idea to come up with a list of questions to ask your doctor to make sure that you have a good understanding of exactly what is going happen. If possible, it is also a great idea to bring along a buddy to your appointment. Tomorrow my hubby is actually coming with me. He wasn't able to come with me for the appointment before my last surgeries, but I had a dear friend who did, and she was a great advocate. Hubby will be perfect for this because while I get very emotional which sometimes makes it hard for me to listen, he is very analytical and can stay calm in stressful situations, which this will be for me.