6 weeks post ORIF extreme pain FWB

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hey guys, I suffered a bimalleolar fracture on 6/27 and had ORIF surgery 7/10. I was NWB until my 6 week check up on 8/15 where my doctor said my bones had healed completely and that i could go to FWB, in or out if my boot. he also prescribed me PT but they are booked for weeks. Since getting the go ahead to walk I have tried really hard every day but the pain is absolutely excruciating. I do exercises I found online to help strengthen my ankle multiple times a day but i am getting really discouraged because it doesn't feel like it is getting any better. it feels extremely tight in the front and back of my ankle and i feel a sharp pain on the inside of my ankle when i put weight on it and i am assuming it is from the large pin that was placed there when i got my surgery. if anyone has some encouraging words or similar stories i would really appreciate it!

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  • Posted

    well if you are experiencing pain you might want to ease up on your weight on ankle. even if doctor gave you go ahead to fwb you don't want to reinjure yourself., you should use your crutches to take weight off ankle and gradually put pressure on ankle . take it slow .it's normal for the ankle to be stiff but pt will take care of that. start with abc's to work on range of motion.

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  • Posted

    Hi Lindsay,

    I would slowly gradually build yourself up to full weight bearing in the boot at first. Try to do some side stepping as that is what felt best for me but use a countertop or table for assistance. Also get yourself a belt or stretch band and do the exercises with that to allow your ankle to loosen up while laying.

    It will take time to build up strength to be full W/B both in the boot and then the next challenge is out of the boot. If you feel a lot of pain dont push it, just do what you can while waiting for therapy to start. I felt the same way at 4.5 weeks post up when I began putting full weight in the boot. It will get better but take it easy as you don't want to move too fast and hurt yourself. Get some natural or pain relief cream and put it on your ankle at night as I noticed that helped me. Trust how your body feels when bearing weight!

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    • Posted

      I am weight bearing in sneakers but I still use crutches because I still have a pretty bad limp and I know I am not ready to come off the crutches when I am out. At home I try my best to get around without them but its still hard at 9 weeks post op

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    • Posted

      thanks for the advice! the doctor made it seem like i should just be up and back to normal immediately so i was feeling discouraged. i will definitely get a stretch band because i think that will help a lot in stretching out my achilles which feels extremely tight right now. i know i need to be more patient but i'm so ready to get back to normal life! I'm also supposed to go back to work next week which is causing anxiety since i'm not back to 100%.

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    • Posted

      They always seem to do that and it makes zero sense, dont allow them to send you back to work if you are not ready. Its protocol to be out for minimum 3 months post op. My doctor wanted to send me back and my job would not even let me come back if I'm still dependent on crutches. Definitely stick up for yourself because you still have a ways to go and need to focus on rehabilitation. The band definitely helps, use it sitting and laying down before you practice side stepping. Trust me, I felt exactly the same your normal life will begin when your body is ready you still need time. Hang in there! 12 weeks post op is usually a good bench mark to aim for regarding minimal pain, and your independence back. Just make sure you keep icing and elevating and when the pain is bad stay off of it

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    • Posted

      hi there i felt for you when you were made to feel you should be up and back to normal x

      everyone is different every break is different x

      regards to the pain decreasing and mobility getting better once you get into the physio stretch exercises you will find by stretching the achilles it helps everything feel less tight .

      i use resistant bands and they have well and truly helped a lot.

      there are some great tutorials on youtube which my physio therapist supported as good exercises .

      like you i was despondant trying to do what i was being made to feel i should be able to do but seriously you just need to gently build your confidence the pain will tell you if you are doing too much x

      i am 12 weeks post surgery only just this week managing to walk a little distance in my boot with one crutch x and allowed to wear trainers in the house which again feels like starting over from scratch with an increase in pain but i have found each time physio turns it up a notch there is a week of agro but the second week things day by day start to feel less uncomfortable

      i am still very sore and stiff in the morning but it gets better as the day goes on x but far from pain free !!!

      i just want you to know that you sound just as i felt and you will slowly start to see improvement x even if you manage to count to 3 with any start of exercise just then count to 4 then 5 dont rush any improvement is improvement xx

      i remember standing there knees knocking unable to bend my knees but by standing and following the physio exercises over weeks i finally got there and you will too xx just take it slow x

      best of luck

      tracy xxxxx

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