Ankle fusion

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I broke my leg over 10 years ago and it healed naturally but over the last two years I've experienced really bad ankle pain. It occurred when I played a charity football match . I had some physiotherapy on my ankle then went back to work. As time went on the pain returned. I tried all sorts, different shoes, trainers, ankle supports plus foot support. It made no difference, I returned to the doctor and he sent me for physio. I continuedon't my physio while also doing my job as a full time baker at sainsburys. The physiotherapist at first thought it was down to my feet being flat footed but then ruled that out and said it could be to do with my old broken leg. He sent me to see a specialist and she then monitored some of physio in hope that she could see whats wrong. They tried manipulating my muscles to get more moment out of my ankle. It improved but not by much.I can barely move my ankle left or right, and struggle to point it down and up. She sent me for MRI, I waited for weeks and weeks to hear the results. Finally my specialist phoned me and said. I have fusion problems and there's a lose bit of tissue floating about. Plus one of my ankle bones is extremely worn. She said she was going to refer me see a surgeon and he will take it from there. That was in January and I've heard nothing since the pain as been getting worse and worse. Today I have had to go home sick. Because I physically couldn't stand on it any longer. I was getting really bad pins and needles and my ankle kept making a cracking sound. Work wasn't very supportive tbh. They asked if there was anything else I can do. I answered no because everything involves standing and the pain hurts that much that I can't even think straight let alone work. The Deputy store manager criticised me and said I must have a low pain threshold and that I don't do anything to help myself he said I should of been wearing a ankle support or something. Maybe I should of I dunno but I tried before and it didn't seem to help. When I got home I rang the doctors and asked why I haven't had appointment through yet and they didn't know anything about it. So I phoned my specialist up the receptionist answered. I asked them about my appointment and they said they have Just written the letter, I asked when my appointment was and they said I'm being put on waiting list. I said well I haven't even had my results I've only been told them on them on the phone. They said get your doctor to send you them. I said they haven't even had them. He was like oh OK well he should have them in a few weeks. I said I'm not being funny but I've been waiting for 2 months. Why is the report and the appointment only just been done, did she forget. To which he replied I don't know. I feel really down about it I've been waiting to get my ankle fixed for two years the pain is getting worse and now work is on my back. I really don't know what to do.

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    Sorry for the essay lol. I'd just be grateful to hear your thoughts and advice.

  • Posted

    I am so sorry to hear of your pain and suffering.  If it get so bad you can't stand it physically and emotionally (as it wears you down mentally too) I would go to the emergency dept of your local hosptial and get a specialist to look at it right away.  I don't know what country you live in and how your health ins. works but something should be done for you immediately.  Your work was not very compassionate towards you having to go home.  I always found that too.  They are not healthcare professionals and think that everyone should stay at work no matter what.  Raising your ankle up and using the combo of icing and heat might help a bit but it is not going to cure it.  I hope the healthcare community where you live looks after you very soon.  If you want to talk.  Feel free to anytime. 

  • Posted

    Hi Luke

    Know how you feel, literally.  I am still investigating my ankle pain - as doctors just shuffle you around today.  All I can say is keep calling them so you don't slip through the cracks.  Ask for copies of your results and Schedule  second opinions.

    Work was not sympathetic with me either and the pain is unbearable that sometimes could not think straight. 

    I got got a bigger shoes and a bigger support.  I also find ice helps and bought a gel pack I freeze that is inserted in a sleeve that wraps around the ankle with Velcro. 

    Started Physio at new place and have few appointments scheduled as well as MRI.  

    I went twice to emergency as the pain was excruciating. Was given  naproxen and then celebrex  which helps a bit but want to get to the bottom of this.

    Seems  only way is to keep pushing through.

  • Posted

    Recently I have talked to a person who have had the experience you have had. Ankle fusion. His pain is terrible. At times he is unable to walk because of the pain. However, his doctor suggested a below the knee amputation

    He is considering it but wanted me to tell him what are the healing periods of an amputation of a below the knee operation. I have not met him yet, to tell him of my experiences. I never had am ankle fusion, but I have had 2 amputstions due to gangrene and diabetes.

    Is that the reason why your doctor has postponed your doctor appointments because they are gathering information about an amputation for you.

    It seems unusual why they have not set up an appointment with you unless the doctor was too busy to write his recommendations down. Or it could have been the clinic.operations.

    That has happened to me. I was supposed to get cataract surgery after seeing an eye doctor in January and they were supposed to call me with 2-3 months. I finally called in June and finally got an appointment to see the surgeon in July. Then got the operation in August 2015. The doctor stated the appointment desk never read her notes to set an appointment in March. She told me she would make sure that didn't happen to her next patient.

    I live in the US, so I hope you continue to call your doctor every week until you get an answer.

    I am a peer volunteer for Amputee Coalition, so I can tell you about the recovery process due to an amputation.

    Good luck in getting the help or medication that can help you walk without pain. Hopefully you will not have to endure an amputation.

  • Posted

    hello luke,sorry to hear about your situation,i know intimately what your going through mate and had as much sympathy from my boss as well (probably why i told him to go f**k himself,and quit),ankle pain can and was for me the most excrutiating pain imaginable but i did get through it,in a nut shell i dislocated my left ankle in 2001 and after 10 years of struggling through i had to seek help from my gp who refered me to hospital,i had 2 lots of keyhole which worked each time for about 6-9 months,open surgery which worked for about 5,then i bit the bullet and had it fused.

    honestly.....i wish i ahd it done in the begining,but the hospitalwill try all other avenues first to see if they can save it,ignore all the horror stories you hear of "having a limp,looking deformed and all the rest of it,it doesnt have to be like that at all as long as you choose your surgeon carefully,and yes you can say no if your not happy with someone,lets face it,its very important its done right,all mine was done thru the nhs by a brilliant dr called andrew skyrme from the horder centre,crowborough,east sussex (my god does this bloke know his stuff).

    it all depends on how damaged it is and you need those test results,so if your doctor is messing you about then change,get one who cares,every time i had issues my gp sent letters the same day as seeing him and kept badgering them untill they complied.

    I cannot stress this enough,you have to be mercinary to get what you want and dont mess about with useless drs,its simple,if the doctor isnt helping then ask  for a new one,even if you cant it will soon buck up the ideas of the one who messing you around when they find out,they hate bad references.

    as regards the work situation you need to speak to the people that matter,not supervisors,speak to managers,(organ grinder not the monkey),explain the situation and see where they lie,they need to know because if you have the treatment like i had then you will be on benefits for a while untill your better and they can point you in the right direction,holiday pay,possible return to your job,p45 etc,also speak to the advisors at citizens advice,now dont get me wrong,they are not perfect by any means,youll find out if and when you go there,but they do have handy leaflets and advice on people who can help you.

    trust me pal,this was a hell of a slog for me but it is doable,just stay patient (no pun intended) and things will work out.

    the most important thing is your ankle now,that is and must be your priority,get it sorted,dont take any crap of the drs and hospital and keep badgering them yourself,every day phone or go there,just become a fly round a cows arse to them,the longer this takes the worse it will get.

    people who hear of this happening to someone that reply,dont be a wuss or something have no idea,ignore them,theyre t*****rs,sorry for use of language but it infuriates me how some people are so selfish and pathetic,i just hope one day that the arse hole that supervises you gets something similar,then he will know.

    good luck mate and keepup the good fight,there are plenty of people behing you that you dont even know

  • Posted

    also before i had any treatment done i was put on voltarol tablets which seemed to help a lot with the swelling and picked up a good tip from a physio about laying on your back with your legs up a wall,it helps drain the fluid out of the ankle and feels nice,it also helps with the swelling,my ankle used to bulge out over my shoe and was agony and this tip really helped
  • Posted

    Hey Luck

    Sorry to hear about what you are going through. I am going through the same sort of thing at the monent although l know its Ostioarthritis thats causing my pain. The pain has got steadily worse over the past 2 months and l am in strong painkillers because of prevoius things. I developed arthritis in my hips when l was 42 and have since had them both replaced. I then found out l had it in both knees and needed them replaced to. I have had 1 knee done in august last year and was taking a break before l got my other done and returned to work as l needed normality back in my life. 2 years ago l was a normal active person who loved going holidays twice a year and walking. Then boom all of a sudden my life was taken over with pain.

    I have had my hips fixed and no pain in them now my knees still ache but my ankle started hurting just like yours a few months ago. The pain just got worse so l had xrays done and a week later my gp told me my ankle was full of OA and the bone had sheered down so thin and l would need to see a surgeon.

    I am fortunate and very lucky to have Bupa as a benifit through my work as l work for a big bank.

    I see the surgeon tom to see if l will get ankle fused or replaced. I know how much it hurts Luke l can't put hardly any weight on it and l limp all the time. What l would say is see your gp to get some pain medication in the meantime until you wait forever on the nhs for an appointment. I wore an ankle support for a little while but found it made it worse so l stopped wearing it. I still am working at the moment although l only work part time now as after all my operations l am to tired to work full time. I am finding driving harder as its my left foot that l have to use all the time.

    I hope you get some answers shortly as its so sore if you are on your feet all day.

    Good Luck


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