Brostrom surgery.

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Has anyone had brostrom surgery on their ankle before and how long was recovery?

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  • Posted

    I had a variation done on both ankles, but not in the UK.

    Recovery wise, I was NWB for 4-6 weeks in a fiberglass cast. Usually they will put a splint first and then you'll come back to get a proper cast. Afterwards, I was put in a fracture walker, free to walk. Note that it takes up to a week to actually be able to put your whole weight on that ankle (in the fracture walker). You'll go from using two crutches, down to one, and then you'll be okay.

    Physiotherapy starts when your ankle comes out of the cast. How often you come in really depends on your situation, therapy place, etc. Either way, DON'T BE LAZY. Do all the home exercises and really take it seriously. I know I got a bit lazy the first time and it was much harder to get the proper ROM later on.

    At this point, you might be walking with a cane. As the weeks go by, you'll get stronger and won't need a cane anymore. You'll still have to take care of your ankle (minor swelling, etc.). At around 3-4 month mark you'll start to feel "normal" but still weak. At about 6 months, you'll probably get cleared for most sports. Usually they want you to take care and not do any hard pivots.

    Personally, I didn't feel like my ankle was "normal" for about a year. After 6 months, I had nearly full strength and was fully functional, but it took another 6 months for it to be completely comfortable.

    TIPS:

    Get your place ready before the surgery. You'll be lying around with your ankle elevated for the majority of time you're in a cast. Making it easy to move around, make food (Freezer foods!) is a must. Better yet, stay with someone and have them cook for you

    For the first few nights, stay away from Stairs if possible. If you've never used crutches, stairs are scary, and you don't want to fall. Make sure your sleeping area is close to a bathroom, etc. without having to go up or down any stairs. If you can, practice with crutches beforehand.

    Try to get some stuff to do - watch movies, video games, etc. You'll be BORED.

    Good luck

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    • Posted

      Thank you for the reply and i will definitely be taking it all on board. I've had crutches before so hopefully i will be okay this time around. may i ask how the pain was after the surgery? honestly i will be glad to just be pain free and this has been happening since i fractured the ankle back in 2017.

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    • Posted

      For my last surgery, they gave me a nerve block (shot in the back of the knee) that makes your whole leg (below the knee) feel numb. It was GREAT. It lasts <24 hours and usually they call you to make sure you get the feeling back, etc. I would highly recommend this if you get this option. The first night is the worst and not having to go through that pain is amazing. Afterwards, I took pain meds for a day or two (hydromorphone 2mg). After that it's just tylenol & advil + some other meds.

      A huge advantage of the nerve block is that they don't have to administer general anesthesia, making recovery much easier. It's not an epidural either. They give you drugs to essentially make you go to sleep. In fact they woke me up near the end of the surgery and got me to move over lol.

      For my first surgery, I didn't have the nerve block and they administered general anesthesia. Combined with that, I was in quite a bit of pain and had to take much stronger medication post op (and for longer).

      As time goes on, it kind of stops hurting, but it'll swell if it's not elevated. Swelling will hurt. There will be pain but it'll mostly be throbbing pain and after 2 weeks you're off drugs completely for sure. Once you start walking, it'll be painful again but over time that'll go away as well. It's much easier to deal with it as you'll be seeing progress (everyday it hurts less, you can do more, etc.)

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    • Posted

      I will speak to the consultant about the nerve block to see if that's a possibility, sounds better then having the general anesthesia. I'm just hoping that eventually i will be pain free as it can get to you mentally being in pain on a daily basis, painkillers don't seem to help at the moment and the swelling is awful. once again thanks a lot for the advice and i will be sure to get all the options from the doctor

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    • Posted

      Good luck and try to stay positive!

      It's definitely been worth it. I suffered some pain beforehand, but i had a lot of instability (loose, damaged ligaments). Ever since the surgery I haven't had any issues with stability and it's easy to forget how bad it was beforehand

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  • Posted

    hi Samantha. i had my surgery 9/24/19. I was in a surgical cast for 2 weeks before a real cast was put on. (by the way don't freak out if you see bruised toes!) I also had a nerve block - best decision I think. Due to unforeseen circumstances, I lasted 2 days in the cast. I got it wet and then asked for the aircast boot instead. my main issue has been nerve pain and swelling. i had 4 weeks of physical therapy which hurt like crazy afterwards but was helpful. I'm almost 4 months out at this point and still have swelling and nerve pain, especially if I'm on my feet for a long time, and some pain. Good luck on your surgery! Rest and elevate as much as possible.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for replying, it's always good to get real feedback from someone who has also been through the same thing. I'm honestly just happy to get this done, sick of being in constant pain. what would of taken me 10 minutes to walk is now taking alot longer, i walk at least 80 mins or so a day and have 3 boys to look after which is stressful enough! i know the healing process will take a while but i would love to go back to running around the park and being able to walk short distances without having to stop or worry my ankle will give way.

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