Day 15 after ORIF ankle surgery and at a low point!

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I’m new on here but I was wondering if anyone has advice or us in same boat as me.  I slipped on snow whilst walking the dogs ( without my phone oops) and got an open fracture / dislocation of my right ankle for my troubles! This all happening on the day before I started a new business with my daughter!  Can’t tell you how fed up and guilty I feel right now. 

Appreciate that all cases are different but would be nice to roughly know what to expect in next few weeks. I have an eight plate with screws and a fibre cast on. No weight bearing for 6 weeks then boot for 6 weeks. 

I have to start getting better ASAP ( don’t we all)  foolishly I was expecting to be back up and at work in 6 weeks but after a recent visit back to hospital .... fell and put broken foot down to save myself!! ..... they said could take upto 6 months. 

Any tips, ideas .... anything gratefully received.... never broken anything before and really hadn’t thought it would be this tough! I’m 53 btw 

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  • Posted

    Hi Sue.

    It's shocking isn't it to break your ankle badly. I shattered mine nearly 3 years ago with dislocation. 2 plates with screws and 2 long screws inner ankle bone. I could NOT walk until post op 5 MONTHS without any aid. We are all different. It's a long haul, depending on the damage done. If you're young with a little fracture of course you will be up and about quicker. You may not take that long. This is my story. Hope you recover quickly Sue 💞

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    • Posted

      Ahhhh 5 months !!! Oh my! Is it all a distant memory now? Hope you recovered fully. Thank you for your reply. 
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  • Posted

    Yeah I hear you, mine has been pretty bad also. I am at week 5 but overall am trying to stay positive and let everyone know it gets better.  I feel pretty good and cant wait for my follow-up in 2 weeks to see if I can put some weight on it.  One recommendation I have is I bought some bone vitamins, think it is K and D.  Then I also bought an ice machine specifically for broken bones that circulates ice water on your injury. I think they help and know the ice does.  I know the first week for me was the worst and I got two plates and a lot of screws, don't recall exact number now.  I will update mine in 2 weeks but one other thing I got as the Iwalk crutch which at least allows me to walk around on it and do somewhat normal things.  I also messed up at work, thinking I can do part time in a few weeks but found it is just to hard.  Anyway, I would do the ice for the swelling as helps me a lot.  Vitamins and make sure protein.  A scooter or iwalk or even wheelchair helps to do a few things around the house.  After 2 weeks I was put in the boot so at least can shower daily.  That helped me feel a little better.  When you put broken foot down did it hurt and did they take xrays?  Most of the time I read that it normally does not do to much damage if any.  

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    • Posted

      Oh my did it hurt! And swelled like mad even though I had leg on high elevation! Yes they took X-rays and all looked well , phew! 

      I’ve not heard of ice machine here but I will defo look into that. 

      Thanks for your comments 

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    • Posted

      Hi Sue, 

      I’m 6 weeks post ORIF surgery. I fell in sand in the desert rather than snow,  also while with my dog. Thankfully she jumped it of the way when I fell! 

      The first theee weeks for me where the worst. I have a splint for two weeks after surgery and now in a boot. I also had a fall early on trying to do too much on crutches. My advice is to take it slowly or follow the others of your Ortho surgeon.  It’s a long haul to recovery and can’t be rushed. Take rest when you can with your leg elevated as much as possible especially during the first month.  Not being able to conduct business as normal is very frustrating but I’ve found clients have been happy to come to me as I’m working from home. 

      Good luck with the recovery!

      Peter 

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    • Posted

      I’m guessing you aren’t in 🇬🇧? From what I can see if you live in USA or Canada then you aren’t plaster cast for 6 weeks? Do you know why that is? Why they put you in boot or aircast earlier than they do in UK? 

      Yep think it is a matter of grinning and bearing it! Each day at a time. 

      Thanks Peter 

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    • Posted

      Hi Sue

      I live in Saudi Arabia. I was offered a choice of a regular cast or an air cast. Not sure why it’s different elsewhere. 

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    • Posted

      I also purchased the iWalk crutch and I am totally in love with it!! I have so much freedom again to get up and take care of things for myself. I am at week 4 post op and have been using this for about 2 weeks. I feel a little braver every day on it. Even did a load of laundry this week. I can only stay up and moving on it for about 45 minutes before I fell exhausted but I think it's because the strap that goes behind my knee keeps slipping and getting loose at the black adjustment buckle. Are you having this issue with yours? I'm looking for a solution to keep it tight. 

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  • Posted

    I broke my left ankle in 3 places and dislocated it in December 2017. I had surgery and a plate and a bunch of screws were put in my ankle. First I was put in a hard cast (fiber glass). Then I was given a walking boot and allowed to bear weight as tolerated for 6 weeks. Over the course of that 6 weeks I started walking first with 2 crutches, then one and then no crutches. At my recent 12 week post op appointment I was declared healed and told I could start walking in shoes. I'm currently in PT to help with range of motion and relearn to walk correctly. I have no desire to have a limp.

    I returned to work 3 weeks post op while still in a hard cast and using a knee scooter. My job is primarily at a desk, so it wasn't too big a deal.

    The best advice, is to take it easy, take your pain pills, and do what you're told. If you try to do too much you're more likely to hurt yourself worse and have continued problems down the road. It sucks. You're going to be upset. You're probably going to cry a lot. It will get better.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Amanda , yes you are right , need to follow orders and spontaneous blubbing has been going on for the last week!!!! Grrr!!! 

      Thanks for your reply , hope you are recovering excellently. 

      Sue

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  • Posted

    Hi there,

    I am also on 14 day post ORIF surgery. It was very tough the first 5 days as I was in so much pain and felt there were two knives constantly going down  both sides of my ankle all day. Second week in, I am feeling much better - I do feel putting my leg up basically all day for the past week has been so helpful. I have also been taking a lot of vitamins - Calcium, fishoil, curcumin/turmeric and I feel it has really help the swelling and the feeling of soreness and redness whenever I had to stand up to move anywhere. 

    You should really take it easy, especially within this crucial stage where your wound healing process is still in its infancy. The last thing you would want is to be moving around too much, and therefore delaying the bones and wound from healing. 

    goodluck and rest up!

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    • Posted

      Hello

      You are right , foot is so much better if it is up all day! 

      How are you sleeping at night? My sleep is poor at best. Difficult getting comfy with cast on and legs on wedge so have good elevation. !! I also find I have to concentrate hard on chilling out as I get a bit panicky about the cast being on and I want to rip it off!?! Got another 4 weeks of cast so have to bond with the darn thing somehow. How are you getting on ? 

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  • Posted

    It will get better. I've been up I've been down I've been emotionally all around. You will go through so many emotions and that's normal. I tried to be fast and thought it would heal me faster but it only set me back . I finally realized to take my time and listen to the doctors. I broke my tib and fib on 11-20-17( orif) surgery 11-21-17. I'm walking a little with the ankle brace. The boot gave me a fit because it kept rubbing my site where the plate is . It caused my incision to reopen. Depressed I was. Stressed I am. But I've come a long way. The main thing for me that's working is listening and asking questions and having faith. This forum has become my guide big time. Some of my friends I had to put on hold because they didn't quite get it because they hadn't experienced this. Good luck

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    • Posted

      Oh my goodness! Glad you are getting about a bit now. 

      Yes you are right about friends! This defo sorts them out.  I have been surprised by some and not in a good way. Although, I must say I’m not at all good at asking for help, find that really difficult, as I’m usually the one doing things for others. So it’s another learning curve. 

      Hope the recovery goes onwards and upwards for you. 

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