Advice for weaning off crutches?!

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I mentioned in a previous post that I broke my tibia and fibula on 17th Feb (now 2 weeks 5 days ago) and had surgery to insert a metal plate and 9 screws on 18th Feb. I have been part weight bearing with crutches since the surgery and when I seen the Doctor yesterday, he said I'm ready to go full weight bearing and start to lose the crutches.

However I'm finding this SO hard! I don't know if I'm having a mental block or what, but I just cannot get myself into a proper walking pattern without the crutches! I'm hopping all over the place and it's like my body physically won't let me walk as if I've forgotten!

If anybody has any advice on how to deal with this that would be great! I don't have any pain bearing weight on my bad ankle, mainly just fear!

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17 Replies

  • Posted

    Wow! That's the earliest go ahead that I've ever heard of. Use both crutches and little by little add weight to the foot. Good luck!

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    • Posted

      I know, I was very shocked myself but the surgeon says my bones seem to be mending miraculously somehow! I'm only 22 so I'm not sure if being pretty young still has something to do with it! Either way I'm beyond pleased. Thanks for the advice! smile

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  • Posted

    I strongly that you invest in a pair of walking sticks then really concentrate on walking with a correct gait. Let speed increase naturally.

    Cheers Richard

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    • Posted

      Typo not walking sticks should have typed walking poles!

      Good luck

      Richard

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    • Posted

      What do you mean by walking poles? The crutches I have at the minute are weight bearing ones that sit at the elbow (not under the arm) but I've never heard of walking poles, I'd definitely be keen to try if it helps! Thanks!

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    • Posted

      Walking poles are what many people use when out walking in the countryside to take the load off their legs. Try Google to find out more They do a different job to crutches and walking sticks.

      Cheers Richard

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  • Posted

    Same thing happened to me. I would just freeze. Couldn't understand how one could forget how to walk. 

    Whilst sitting I started moving feet as though walking, forward then backwards. I progressed to holding onto bed and taking really small steps. Had it into head if lost balance at least had soft landing. 

    It is all to do with lost confidence. These ankle breaks are more stressful then anyone realises. Good luck you will get there in the end.

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  • Posted

    Go to one crutch first... use the crutch on the healthy side... see how that goes before totally going without. I still use a cane if I'm doing something too strenuous .

     

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  • Posted

    No advice but I can fully empathise as I am on the same boat.

    They took the cast off and want me to use both of my feet.

    I feel I will never make it.  I guess this is the beginning of a new period of suffering.

    It seeks like there is no end to this awful suffering.

    Molly

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  • Posted

    I would suggest suggest walking poles as they will allow you to have the measure of stability you need but still allow you to develop your walking skills in a more natural way.

    Cheers Richard

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  • Posted

    Thanks for the advice everyone! This morning I managed to take my first crutchless steps and since then the mental block has gone! I seen my PT this afternoon and he says to carry on using one crutch on my good side until my gait improves, but within a week I should be completely independent.

    I found that walking with straight legs at first helped me with putting weight on my foot, so I'd advice everyone to try this and slowly to and bend your knees!

    Good luck to everyone and I'm sure the suffering will be over soon!

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  • Posted

    Hi Faye Louise,

    We are in the same boat.. I met with an accident last year nov this is my fourth month after surgery and I am still unable to walk properly

    If I used the walking frame I am able to walk without limping and if I don't I limp a lot and my hip joint & lower back gets cramped once I have that pain I hv to sit. Pain is still there for me. In yr case you can either use the walking frame or the airboots to try stabling your footings first or you might want to try aqua walking in the pool. Speedy recovery

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    • Posted

      Hi! Oh that sounds awful poor you! How long have you been weight bearing for?

      I seen my PT today and he says although I'm now managing to 'walk' with no crutches my gait is so bad that for the next week or so to walk with one crutch (on my good side, putting it forward at the same time as my bad foot), now my biggest problem is that my ankle gets SO swollen even after just walking for a few minutes!

      Have you found walking in the pool helps? Planning to go swimming this weekend so hopefully it will!

      Speedy recovery!!

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    • Posted

      Hi Faye Louise

      After my surgery 6 weeks later of recovery time I was removed from cast and stitches then doctor instructed me to rest with airboots for 3weeks but I found it difficult as one leg was higher then the other while walking i removed and used the walking frame instead. on my second appt after surgery Doctor mentioned bone has recovered and I m ready for full weight bearing and told me to walk with no walking aide. I struggled only when hip joint and lower back gets cramped and disallows me from walking further. Now my only worries is that I only ca. Stand for less then 15mins .. have not tried walking outside yet will do so when my helper is back from leave

      Meanwhile I did try going into the pool to walk that was awesome feeling it will motivate you to walk more. All the best speedy recovery we can do this 👍🏻

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  • Posted

    My wife had a same surgery and same metal work.They asked to put full weight around 3wks time.If doctor said then you can start to walk slowly.My wife was also struggling to walk initially.How about the Physio?Better talk with Physio also.Don't delay start to do gradully.

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    • Posted

      Hi Jeya

      How is your Wife coping on the walking part ? Does she have any hip joint pain or lower back pain while walking for 10 mins is she using wheelchair to move around at home or does she use the clutches? I use the wheelchair at home to move around at times but sometimes I walk without the clutches too. Guess I need to discard my wheelchair soon and do more walking

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    • Posted

      Hi, how did your wife get on?

      After seeing the PT today he gave me some strengthening and ROM exercises to help with walking, and told me to try with one crutch on my good side until my gait improves!

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