Forgot how to walk

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broke ankle (21fractures) early November. After four plates and screws fitted, I have in last two weeks been allowed to now bear weight.

at times when I stand I just freeze, as though can't remember how to put one front of other. 

I was using moon boot and Zimmer frame. Now after 2nd time at physio told to use crutches and stop using boot. Terrified. 

Also after having ankle pulled and tugged the last two days found ankle to be more stiff than ever. Anyone else had these problems?

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  • Posted

    Hi Gill 

    so sorry to hear about your ankle, welcome to this form it's great. Don't worry we are all in the same boat here, you'll find lots of support and help !

    the only way i could get my head around putting my foot down again was to remember all the bones have healed now, they are strong, fixed firmley in place with heaps of metal and screws, my ankle will NOT let me down and I can trust it. Also, I tried to visualise the tendons I was making strong again not the bones. Sounds bizarre but my brain could handle that image rather than this weak broken foot that it was but not now!!!!! 

    I broke my ankle beginning of Dec in a pair of high heels, broke tib and fib , I have a plate and screws either side. I'm 8weeks post op on tues. I've ditched the boot as it didn't help my stiff locked ankle. I'm swimming in the pool every day , trust me it helps so much and I managed  to get my foot in a trainer this morning first the time. I've got crutches and  do  every two hours. I'm not telling you my story to say look how amazing I'm doing its just to give you some ideas, that's the way I am trying  to recover from this awful awful injury is by reading up on people's situations to give me hope, and recovery knowledge. We all recover at different rates, but I know we will all get there. It's just so frustrating depressing and slow,there is no shortcuts! Try try to trust your ankle, you will be surprised what it can do? 

    Good luck and big hugs 🇬🇧👠👣

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    • Posted

      Thanks Pippie , feel so useless at times. I know there is going to be no short fix. Just can't seem to get head round, how one can forget to walk. Will try and retrain brain to your way of thinking. 

      i have few events and holidays booked for the summer months, so that my target to at least be walking by then

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    • Posted

      Yes those  booked holidays will be your goal to walk again you'll do it !!!!

      💋🌺

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  • Posted

    Hi Gill,

    Sounds like you had a diffiucult break, but you are moving along quickly.  You can move at your own speed.  Trust your instinct. When they told me you're free of the boot I was shocked that they could expect me to walk on my atrophied weak ankle, but they added I could do it gradually.  I started by walking around my house without the boot with crutches and a walker.  I found the walker a better tool at first in the house. You will find that it goes pretty fast at first and it lifts your mood to be upright! I had surgery Oct. 8th, so I'm a month ahead of you. I am walking unaided, going to PT twice a week.  I still have pain at night and some swelling. The ankle stiffens up while you sleep and has to be stretched again.  I have been going in the pool too, getting massages.  My flexion is very stiff, the back of the ankle. When I hear where you're at one month behind me I realize how far I've gotten.  You're on the road to walking. Keep icing and use compression socks. 

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    • Posted

      Thanks Linda.  This has all been on big shock to the system. Every medical person comments on how bad of breaks I had. Never been a one doing things by halves.

      Really just want to be able to walk, then not so reliant on family and friends. 

      My next appointment is next week so have to start getting practice on those crutches. 

      Best wishes to you in your recovery

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    • Posted

      I can totally relate about wanting to be independent.  That has to be the hardest part.  I forgot to mention that PT had me spinning on a stationary bike as soon as I was out of the fiberglass cast.  At first, I was very weak, not just in my ankle, but weak and tired.  I couldn't wait to get in bed with my leg elevated, but each day I got a little stronger. I'm up to riding the bike for 16 minutes.  I'm adding a minute every time I do it.  It seems to be good for warming up the ankle, loosening it up and activating the calf and thigh.  I'm thinking that the swelling won't stop until our leg muscles are back to normal, just my opinion since no one tells us anything.  

      Wishing everyone a happy Saturday.  

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  • Posted

    Hi Gill

    I am 6 weeks behind you and hope to have my plaster off for good in 10 days time. 

    I know it will be progress to be allowed to put a bit of weight on the ankle but at the same time I expect to have to do exercises to regain strength and possibly have a moon boot that is if the bones have healed. So far I have been using a wheelchair to move about but did manage to hop down the stairs upright holding onto hand rails either side. I forgot how tall I am and think I have grown!!!

    It is such a tedious process allowing the bones to heal around screws and plates but hopefully by summer we will all be able to walk properly again.  Everyone is different but we must all keep positive,and hope each day brings improvement. Best wishes and hope you master the crutches. x

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    • Posted

      Hi beryl, I was given moon boot , only had it for week then physio said no not to use. (Wouldn't care even bought a one myself that inflated to protect ankle - wasted my money here). The moon boot gives a lovely sense of security. So brave to attempt the stairs. I still go up from the sitting position. Hopefully that part of body should be well toned. 

      Expect a shock at weight and muscle loss when your plaster comes off. Also the dry skin. Plenty of e45 cream. 

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  • Posted

    Hi Gill.

    Im sorry to hear about your injury, and appreciate how frustrating it is that even basic tasks can no longer be done or if so, with great effort.

    As Pippie says, there is a lot of support & advice on this forum which does help as we are all experiencing the same or similar issues or symptoms.

    I had my surgery for 3 screws (no plates) on 29th Sept & have only returned to work 2 weeks ago.

    I fully understand when you say that you have forgot how to walk, as I experienced the same. I had got used to crutches that I couldn't initially walk without them. I forced my self to use just 1 crutch at first which was hard loosing my balance etc. I had different emotions from anger to depression, thinking that I would never return to my previously active work/family and social life. I couldn't drive and had to rely on my wife to take me to appointments, shopping etc. I realised that 30 minutes a week physio was virtually useless but couldn't afford to pay privately, as I don't get paid other than s.s.p from my employer. I returned to work using 1 crutch for support but bought a folding walking stick off Ebay, as the crutch was clumsy getting in and out of the car. I decided to ditch the walking stick this week and am walking unaided, however the swelling on my ankle has not reduced and after 10 hours at work is like a balloon when I return home. I have tried bathing it, tried ice compressions, support bandages, keeping it elevated even in bed, massaging with e45, nothing appears to work. I am starting swimming this week, so will see what progress I make. I am going to America in July and have other events booked prior to July. I wish you a speedy recovery and I'm sure that you will be walking for your events and summer holidays

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your words. My aim is to be able to walk up those stairs onto the plane for my holidays. 

      Standing not knowing how to move one foot then the other was one of the most terrifying moments of my life. All boils down to confidence, which I know I have lost. 

      This week know I really have to push myself.

      good luck on your recovery and fingers crossed the swelling soon goes

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  • Posted

    Hi Gill. Welcome. The people on this forum have been a life saver as you will find out. We're all at different places on our recovery with different breaks but I see it so positive and understanding of each one of us to see the different progress and situation. I'm 9 weeks post op 2 breaks and dislocation. Currently I'm still in my air boot a wheelchair and lightly weight bearing when I transfer or in the kitchen putting things away on high shelves. I'm physio 3 weeks now, leg strengthening, and range of motion plus mirror therapy. My foot is finally releasing a bit but I can not get it to lay flat on the floor or boot. I'm working up to fully weight bearing to get in my walker. I get what you say about forgetting how to walk. Right now it seems daunting but I know it's going happen. My foot hydro is gently pushing me as I'm trying to push myself more each day.....patience is the key but so difficult some days. I wish you well and listen to your body in the end it's what works for you.  Hello to all here, best Jannie 🏃💃🏊
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    • Posted

      Thanks Janice, words are encouraging. I fully understand not putting foot flat to floor. I at times think foot is done but whilst with physio I soon find the difference when he presses to floor. In a word OUTCH. 

      I was last week the ankle had a little more flexibility, that was till physio was pushing and pulling the ankle. These last two days hardly been able to move it. 

      Awe well back to more exercises. 

      Take care

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    • Posted

      I had after vigorous manipulation on the heel and ankle last Monday pain beyond belief. It took 2 days to settle down back to square one. She said it was too much and did lighter touch but also put the stimulator on my withered leg and had me pull up the on my foot with the rhythms of the stimulator, it helped and got a bit more mobility. My leg and hips are so tight I'm focusing a lot on getting that loosened so when I'm fully weight bearing my legs can hold me. I forgot to mention, I have my foot free except when transferring from room to room in my chair,  I wear my boot cause without fail I'm banging into things. It's my security too, keep on....I try and move my foot every chance I get, pain is constant but it's in waves of intensity which I guess is normal....your doing it! 🏃
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    • Posted

      Your definitely right about security having the boot on. I even feel more secure with slippers or trainers. Problem here though is one swollen foot. Agony trying to pull footwear on. Took delivery today of wider fitting slippers. Yippee 
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    • Posted

      Good for getting bigger slippers, it feels so unreal having the foot in something that doesn't feel right to me. I tried my runner on after my exercises today got it in but it's cutting all in my heel so will have to get something more soft around this tender area. We will get there....keep thinking about your wonderful vacation......👣
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