Hi, happy new Year! I celebrated the holidays with a beautiful cast on my left leg and a new Ankle! I’ve literally been asked hundreds of times, “what happened to your leg Andrea” and well it’s simple I was born with no ankle joints.
I have a condition called Tolecoalation Coalition, basically I’m missing my ankle joints and my bones literally squash each other and rub against each other… it’s extremely painful.
How I found out I had this…
I’ve always told people I had weak ankles because I always thought I was just weak as I used to do Judo my whole life and always thought, oh maybe all those years I just tired my ankles out. When I started my first job, at age 16, I started to notice my ankles hurt after work to the point where I couldn’t walk. I would go to the doctor and they told me I had tendinitis and gave me pain medicine. I never took the pain medicine because I hate medicine lol but the pain never went away for years and I would keep going to the same doctors and they would put me in a brace and tell me the same thing. Even though I seemed so happy at Disney when I left the moment I sat down I couldn’t stand up again without literally crying in pain, I would literally fall from how bad my ankles hurt. Ryan, my fiancé has almost taken me to the hospital many times because he thought maybe I broke them from how much I would cry and kinda yell in pain lol I wouldn’t even be able to sleep. So finally I said enough I researched the best doctors and I found one an hour away from my house but I was willing to do anything to help my pain. I go to the first appointment and I went with the mindset of, oh he’s just gonna tell me the same thing the other doctors have told me, physical therapy, a brace and medicine. So come to find out after one X-ray that I have no ankle joints and I have arthritis. I originally went in for pain in my left ankle because I always thought my right ankle hurt because I was putting more weight on it since my left ankle hurt but actually I had no ankle joints in there either haha Which kind of explains why I could never walk or stand and do normal things without crying in pain. I felt like I finally found answers and felt so much comfort with what my doctor was saying. I’m super happy with my choose of researching a doctor and even if I have to travel a little more for treatments and surgery I don’t regret it and love going haha
What did they do in surgery
With the opinion of my doctor, we decided on an ankle fusion. I have a scar on the left side of my ankle and on my heel. He basically took out the part of my bone where my ankle would be and put in a bone growth, mixed with some of my bone marrow he took out of my leg. Then he put two screws through my heel of my foot. Again I’m not a doctor so I’m not sure 100% all the technical terms and stuff haha
So now what?
I was in the white cast for two weeks today and yesterday I got moved into this green cast that I will be in for 4 weeks and a half weeks. The whole recovery process is 3-6 months until I see results. So far I’m excited and ready to improve my overall life and go back to walking around Disney eating all the food and taking photos❤️
So that’s my story of how I was born with no ankle joints and the journey I will be on for a little while❤️
Do not forget to be you and be happy!