How Different is the Boot vs. Cast

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I'm 6 weeks post-ORIF for a trimalleolar ankle fracture. Been in a cast the whole time. My doctor wanted me to stay in a cast for an additional 2 weeks but after begging and pleading with him (it's very hot and dry here and the cast is uncomfortable), he's allowing me to get the boot at the end of this week (but still non weight bearing). He's only allowing me to remove it to shower but otherwise I have to wear the boot 24/7, even while sleeping.

Out of curiosity, is the boot lighter than the cast? Heavier? Bulkier? Easier or harder to sleep in than the cast? 

Thanks!

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  • Posted

    I had the same break and surgery as you. I was lucky enough to only have to wear a cast for 2 weeks, and then I was put into a boot(nwb of course) because my ankle was getting super stiff. I think the boot is 10x better than the cast,  because you can take it off whenever you want and chill. For me personally, sleeping with it is harder than the cast, but being able to take it off and shower and do PT makes up for it. To me, it seems heavier, but not much. 
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  • Posted

    In my opinion the boot is way better then the cast. You have controll!!! If you get an itch with the cast on your out of luck. I know the Dr. Says to keep it on but you can take it off if it is bothersome or you just need a little break. Just be careful moving around because you do not want to step on your foot!!!! Good luck!
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  • Posted

    HARD! HATE IT!!! I begged too, please, please, I won't walk, give me a boot. It hurts, it is way heavier, I can't stand it! I therefore spend most of my day in bed elevating with ice on ankle. It grabs my ankle so tight. If I had to do it again, I would shut up and listen to my doc. Oh and showering w/o my cast (I used a cast cover before) feels terrible, my foot turns purple sitting there and the water gives it a horrible feeling. I regret my bad decision because I'm not weight bearing yet anyhow, so I should have listened to him. And the boot is hot if not hotter than the cast! 

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  • Posted

    Boot is far better. You can remove it. Wiggle your toes. Scratch it. Wash it. Moisturize it and the scar. I didnt sleep in mine but it was a solid fusion, long tibial nail and bonegraft so not moving much.
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  • Posted

    I had almost the exact surgery as you about four weeks ago and have been (NWB) in my boot since the 27th of June. Initially I found it a lot lighter than the cast, but now I’m annoyed at how heavy it seems (though I think this may have to do with the weakening of my calf muscle). I love that I can take it off to shower. I love that I can adjust the air so that it is more comfortable for different parts of the day—after a night of elevating my swelling is way down so I can put it a lot of air to make it secure but then as I’m up in the day I swell more and can let some air out instead of it squeezing me like the cast did. I can put vitamin E on my incisions which makes them stop itching! When I’m sitting safely I can take it off and ice my ankle directly. I think you’ll really prefer it, but don’t be afraid to play with the air pressure—I was so worried to mess with it because the Nurse put it on, and then it was /super/ painful and tight so I /had/ to take it off after 18 hours—and then realized it wasn’t that painful if I just didn’t inflate it as much. Good luck! 
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  • Posted

    From 2 weeks post ankle fusion bone graft and tibial nail, i had a boot on and consultant told me I could walk on the boot as if FWB as the air in the boot took all the weight. I walked miles on it. Had minimal calf wastage and am happy with pain level. Came out of boot 6 days ago. Can walk without crutches round house. Outside i use one or two if doing long distance. I think I have been allowed to do a lot listening to others. Maybe as my tibia has a huge nail in it as well.
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  • Posted

    instead i think the cast is way much better than the boot.

    my breaks (malleolis and talus) were clean so i have no hardware, maybe i need the extra support given by the cast.

    i used the boot in the past but was too unstable and my ankle hurt all the time and never healed. i ended up reinjurying it. with my last fracture they plastered my entire leg and my ankle never felt so well.

    then i was given a walking cast, it still is much more effective than the boot, is also more confortable to sleep in.

    so the cast is boring but sometimes necessary. i really saw a huge difference.

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