6 weeks post break, 5 weeks post op for broken ankle

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On Jan 10, I broke my ankle in 8 places and dislocated it(it was completely backwards). I had surgery a week later with screws and a plate. 2 weeks later I was put in a cast, go back in 2 weeks to have cast removed. I have been having some strange things going on and I am looking for answers.

1. Anytime I don't have my foot elevated it swells instantly.

2. My toes are a reddish purple and will feel like they are freezing, but when you touch them they are hot.

3. I keep getting these stabbing pains in my ankle, to the point they bring tears to my eyes.

4. If feels like someone is poking me with pins. This is not only in my ankle but all over my foot.

5. Muscle spasms, sometimes so bad that my whole leg will jerk. Not to mention, muscle cramps.

Appreciate any help you can give me. Thanks

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  • Posted

    Hi, 

    1. Swelling is normal after ankle break. 

    2. A slight discolouring is also normal. Been in plaster can also make skin feel hot.

    3. Pain is also normal, remember you had a nasty break. Would mention this though when you go for your plaster off.

    4. Pins and needles all over foot is due to foot been kept still for a period of time but does improve once foot gets moving again.

    5. muscel cramps and spasms another normal thing but again would mention this. Not sure but think if it's really bad they can give you medication for this. 

    Your early days and things will settle down given time

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  • Posted

    Think we all feel the same way. I had my accident 9th November and would have thought by now would be back to normal. Each day find there just something extra you can do, small as it may seem it means your on your way to recovery.

    i still can't walk but aiming for June when got tickets for concert.

     

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  • Posted

    Quite normal. Keep aircast boot on night and day for 6 weeks. Keep weight off foot for 3 weeks. After 6 week change to Aircast ankle support for 6 weeks. Swelling should go down after 6 months and pain free in 1 year. Regards Mr Ankle
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  • Posted

    It's still early days for your recovery yet.

    I had all of the sensations that you mention, but as time goes on they will become less. I think that hospitals should explain better regarding possible issues and more importantly recovery times. I broke my left foot some 35 years ago as some idiotic work colleague dropped a 6ft fork truck extension arm on it. I was fully recovered, had physio and back to work within 6 weeks.

    I assumed the same recovery time for my ankle/leg break, wow, how wrong could I have been! The key is to try and stay positive and be patient.

    Good luck with your recovery

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  • Posted

    Hi, I did almost the same thing to my ankle, I also stretched some ligaments and had screws put in and had to wait 2 months to take them out, it took 6 months to get back to work and a month to learn how to walk again. I to have screws & plates, I think you have a lot of nerve damage. It's been 5 yrs for me and I still have pain, I have a special ankle boot that I have to wear everyday. I soak my ankle in Epsom salt, I rub it a lot and still take pain medicine, I had 64 physical therapy treatments. You should avoid walking a lot, stairs etc. I used to teach dancing but that has ended, no jumping, skipping, running etc. I feel your pain. I also ice it and it seems heat a lot. Good luck, take care of it, the pain might be er end but you can manage it.
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    • Posted

      Thank you Tammy. I had a ligament so twisted that they had to screw it to the bone to keep it straight. I have learned more from this group than my own doctor. I am sure that once the cast is off and I can massage and soak it, it will help. I am going to talk to the doctor next visit about nerve damage. Were your toes numb? I can't feel the last two at all.
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    • Posted

      The doctors should explain what to expect because my friends who have had hip or knee replacements are amazed it is taking me so long to recover. Like you I have screws and a plate either side of my ankle and told no weight bearing for 6 weeks. I had numb toes and they were red and blue.  My leg jumped at night and the pain moved about in the ankle and foot.

      When my cast was removed there were places that on my leg and heel that had pressure blisters from the cast which must have been the reason for some of the discomfort too.. After removal of the cast the 2 wounds were left with no dressing and the skin flaked off during the first week.  I am now 8 weeks post op. and get pain if I do too much so elevate the leg, massage and ice when needed.

      This site is so good because we are all able to share our experiences.  Being shown Xrays in the hospital shows what has been done but not what to expect in the months ahead.  Hope you make progress each day.

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    • Posted

      Thank you Beryl. My doctor hasn't really told me anything. When I go back on the 2nd I have a lot of questions for him and I am not going to let him walk out without answering them. I called his office the other day with a question and was told that since I am Workmans Comp I have to wait until my next appt. Not sure what difference that makes, but that is what they said. I think my biggest fear is that since I am Workmans Comp they will rush my recovery and force me back to work before my ankle is ready.
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    • Posted

      I agree Beryl. The doctors talked me through saying I could have some swelling, bleeding, infection, and arthritis later on in life.

      What an understatement! Nothing about the swelling lasting up to a year or being unable to walk or work for over three months, nothing about almost being house bound for this time. It freaked me out to see the X-ray of my leg and ankle with screws into the bone. This forum is ideal, as we are here for tips and suggestions, advice and sympathy of what real people are experiencing, something that all the training in the world cannot provide.

       

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    • Posted

      Paul, you are right, they do not prepare you for what this experience is like. Until I found this group, I really thought I would be fine after 6 weeks or so. No one bothered to tell me that it was going to be a long drawn out ordeal. No one told me that I would be a virtual prisoner in my home and to be careful of depression. I understand that the doctors job is to fix the break, but I think they should tell us so we can prepare ourselves for what lies ahead.
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    • Posted

      When I went to my doctor for a sick note, he was questioning why I am still not back at work and not fully recovered as max for ankle recovery is 3 months. Another doctor questioned why I was still using a crutch after 3 months! What planet are these people on? 
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