Ankle fracture surgery August 16th 2018, stiffness in toes and sleep

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I was in a horrible car accident on August 16th 2018 where I fractured my ankle in 3 places resulting in surgery and a plate and 9 screws. I am just over 6 weeks in and am still non-weight bearing. Around 2 weeks, they took my staples out and placed me in an aircast/walking boot. The pain for the most part has dwindled down some other than some intense random shooting pains that feel like they pierce through the metal. My toes are completely stiff and barely move and don't bend at all. I have been slowly trying to get them to move with no luck. I am wondering if anyone else has experienced this and if so, what helped? I haven't received the green light to start physical therapy yet so I have really only done small movements with my ankle and toes. Also wondering what sleeping position worked best for you? I cannot find a single sleeping position where my foot and ankle is comfortable and supported. I have been maybe getting an hour or two of sleep a night. Someone please help...

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  • Posted

    Hi,

    I’m sorry to hear about your accident. 

    I’m 3 weeks behind you. I’m still in a cast, and NWB. It’s so frustrating. 

    With regards to sleeping, I’ve found it comfortable with my foot on 2 pillows, and let the leg relax and it relaxes to the side but it is comfortable. I bend my leg slightly. I wish I could sleep on my side but it’s too painful. 

    Take your painkillers an hour before bed and they should of kicked in before you try get comfortable. 

    I’m having a lot of nerve pain. 

    Wishing you a speedy recovery 

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  • Posted

    Wow!! Sorry about your accident. It is still too early for you!!! I know what you going through!! I broke my ankle in two different places!! With two plates and 18 screws. I'm going on 4 month now!! Next month I can start putting weight on it!!! I Google on physical therapy at home!! And I found about I quite a few exercises you can do. There one I do is the ABC with your big toe!! With your big toe write out the ABC's 3 timed with your big toe only!!! That might help!! Don't worry your healing is getting close!!

    Just don't over do your self!! God bless!!😁😀

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  • Posted

    Hi,

    I had a trimalleaor fracture in April of this year, had surgery to repair with 2 plates and twelve pins to keep in place. I very much had some of the same issues as you are having right now. Staples came out after two weeks and put into a boot with NWB for another 6 weeks. My toes were stiff and felt like they were stuck in place, I had no feeling on the bottom of my foot yet there were times that it felt like someone was shooting off fireworks out of my toes...it felt like little electrical shocks and they hurt!!!   I started PT at about 5 weeks post surgery.  I went 3 times a week for about 2 hours each time.just little things like range of motion and toe scrunches then some partial weight bearing...two crutch, one crutch and then a cane.  It seemed like it took forever to be able to walk again...and not very well at that. I still have trouble with a few things, uneven surfaces, hills, balancing...all that,  My ankle is pretty stiff first thing in the morning and a little sore/swollen at night, but the shooting pains have stopped, just achy sometimes..but I can walk without assistance...its just not pretty but I do it. I am finally back at work and going to PT 2 times a week. But long story short...go to PT...do the exercise...try not to stay down for too long because it is a journey we are on that takes a long time and we may never be back to where we were but pretty close.. good luck and let me know if I can answer any other questions for you...oh yeah...my big toe is still kinda stuck in place and most of the bottom of my foot is numb...but still able to do what I need to do so just keep on trying and you will get there.

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  • Posted

    Everyone had great advice.  I would add that if you can, soak in warm/hot water with Epsom salts.  Then immediately after work on ROM (range of motion).  This helped me, as well as taking the meds they give you.  If you hurt you won’t want to walk or stand or work on anything.
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  • Posted

    Hi. I'm very sorry to hear this.I suffered a tri-mal two years ago. My toes were very stiff and it was my PT that got them moving again plus home exercises consisting of putting the foot of my affected ankle in a shoebox full of rice and trying to pick up rice with my toes. PT had me do that every day for as long as I could handle it. The combination of PT and the rice box exercises, and time, seems to have worked. My toes on the foot that suffered the broken ankle are much more flexible now than my other foot. That said, until PT started all i could do was very small movements with my toes. 

    Sleeping was terrible, possibly the worst part of the whole thing, but I finally got to a point where I could sleep with the boot on by using a foam wedge that I purchased on Amazon. I slept on my side with a pillow between my legs and my broken ankle leg elevated on the wedge. I also put pillows on either side of the wedge to keep everything in place because if I rolled in the night and my leg slipped off the wedge the pain was excruciating. 

    Hang in there. It's never been the same for me but it does gets remarkably better. This year I hiked a glacier! And this past winter I skied again.

    I had a I was in a horrible car accident on August 16th 2018 where I fractured my ankle in 3 places resulting in surgery and a plate and 9 screws. I am just over 6 weeks in and am still non-weight bearing. Around 2 weeks, they took my staples out and placed me in an aircast/walking boot. The pain for the most part has dwindled down some other than some intense random shooting pains that feel like they pierce through the metal. My toes are completely stiff and barely move and don't bend at all. I have been slowly trying to get them to move with no luck. I am wondering if anyone else has experienced this and if so, what helped? I haven't received the green light to start physical therapy yet so I have really only done small movements with my ankle and toes. Also wondering what sleeping position worked best for you? I cannot find a single sleeping position where my foot and ankle is comfortable and supported. I have been maybe getting an hour or two of sleep a night. Someone please help...

    I was in a horrible car accident on August 16th 2018 where I fractured my ankle in 3 places resulting in surgery and a plate and 9 screws. I am just over 6 weeks in and am still non-weight bearing. Around 2 weeks, they took my staples out and placed me in an aircast/walking boot. The pain for the most part has dwindled down some other than some intense random shooting pains that feel like they pierce through the metal. My toes are completely stiff and barely move and don't bend at all. I have been slowly trying to get them to move with no luck. I am wondering if anyone else has experienced this and if so, what helped? I haven't received the green light to start physical therapy yet so I have really only done small movements with my ankle and toes. Also wondering what sleeping position worked best for you? I cannot find a single sleeping position where my foot and ankle is comfortable and supported. I have been maybe getting an hour or two of sleep a night. Someone please help...

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much for responding to my questions. It just helps so much to be able to speak to others who have gone through this because I am so. Tired. Of. Sitting. Around. I shouldn't complain because much worse could have came from the accident. Patience can be a hard thing. I am looking forward to meeting with my surgeon Tuesday. Hopefully I can start PT. Did PT hurt? Also when you had to start bearing weight what was it like on that ankle? My nerves are going through the roof as this whole process has been SO painful for me. I thought I had a high pain tolerance, boy was I wrong! I managed to get a smaller pillow for in between my legs and I got decent sleep last night for the first time in over 6 weeks!!

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    • Posted

      I had a fracture from a fall the same day as your accident. Glad to hear you are finally sleeping. I just started sleeping better a couple weeks ago after starting PT. Not sure if that is coincidence. Also taking pain medication before bed helps. How is PT going ? I find it intense but the ankle feels much less stiff and less painful afterward. I've seen posts about soaking in warm water. I find that difficult for me as the skin is ultra sensitive to heat. Not sure if that is common. Hope you're doing ok these days.

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  • Posted

    Hi im 6 weeks after surgery for trimelleor ankle fracture and tibia fracture and know exactly how you feel. I made sure i kept trying movement in my toes from day 1 and now 6 weeks in have full range of movement in them also moving my ankle around as much as i can in cast. Im totaly pain free apart from when my leg and ankle swell when i stand up. I think movement is the key to recovery keep trying to get as much movement as possible. Ive never found a way to get a good nights sleep yet though manage a bout three hours a night. goid luck and hope your a bit better by now

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