Lateral Malleolus fracture

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Hello everyone.

About two years ago I had an avulsion fracture of the Lateral Malleolus.  I was out walking my dog and rolled my ankle going down a steep enbankment, I heard a cracking noise followed by alot of pain immediately and was unable to walk on that foot.  I managed to get back to my house, the swelling on my foot was pretty bad so I decided to go and get it checked out in A&E

After an X-Ray I was told that I had an avulsion at the tip of the bone, I was put in an aircast boot, given a basic advice sheet and told I would need follow up appointments to check on the healing. However later I was told I didn't need follow up appointments and just came out of the boot when it felt right.  The problem is it never was and never has been right since, I always get ankle pain (usually a dull pain if sat still) to sometimes much sharper pain when walking, ankle weakness, constantly spraining for no reason and get pain all over the foot (currently have pain on the left and right side of my foot).

I decided to leave it, the Doctor told me a couple of times it would just get better but I think two years is long enough to wait.  I had another X-ray a few days ago, while I expect it to be normal I wonder what other things (as a result of the avulsion) could be causing this constant pain and instability.  It is also worth noting that I had torn ligaments in my foot during the injury completly rupturing the achillies tendon.  

How can such a small, non serious injury be causing me issues 2 years down the road? Before the injury I was exercising alot, mountain hiking / climbing etc but now I cant do most of what I enjoyed before without getting a debilitating ankle sprain.  

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5 Replies

  • Posted

    Are you seeing an foot and ankle specialist? I am recovering from a fracture of the medial malleolus, 

    posterior malleolus and a break in my fibula which required surgery to screw things back together. However, another injury I have is widening of the syndesmosis in which my fibula ripped away from the fibrous tissue that connects it to the tibia. That required 2 pins to be inserted to hold them together so the syndesmosis could fuse everything back together. My specialist explained that it could cause issues in the future, rolling of the ankle and possible separation again if it didn't heal properly, as well as pain. I hope you figure out what is going on. 2 years is a long time to endure ankle pain and miss out on things you love doing. 

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    • Posted

      I am not seeing anyone, going private is pretty expensive for me (£300 or so for a 20 minute session), I am just with a GP in the NHS at the moment sad Any advice or tips? 

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    • Posted

      Yikes...I would definitely mention that type of injury to him and see what he suggests.He might not be familiar with the injury so isn't detecting it in the x-rays. The ER didn't detect mine but the specialist noticed it right away. From everything I have seen, that type of injury requires pins, holding the bones together, so that area in between them can heal properly. It also requires that you be Non-weight bearing for 6-8 weeks and then another surgery to remove the pins before you can start walking on it again. Chronic injuries or injuries that go untreated can lead to degenerative changes in the syndesmosis as well as the tibiotalar joint. You might not have this injury but it is quite common with ankle sprains and breaks. The fact that you keep injuring yourself over and over leads me to think this might be one of your issues. Do you wear an ankle brace these days when you are doing activites? How long did you wear the medical boot before walking without it?

       

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    • Posted

      Well GP's are pretty much useless in my opinion, I doubt this one would know much so once I get a copy of the results I should probably go private. The weird thing is with mine the ER picked it up immediately, but then decided I didn't need any follow up.  I was just put in an Aircast boot and told weight bearing was fine even straight away...  I just took it off in 6 weeks as I didn't even know when it was meant to come off, no surgery, no physio, nothing.  

      Like you said, it sprains all the time, it constantly hurts, again nothing agonising but it's always there. I have no Ankle brace at the moment other than one I bought online which doesn't seem to do much.  

      To be fair, my type of avulsion, from what I can research, doesn't usually have follow up, just seems odd though they would say it needs follow up, then they say it doesn't, then when I saw them eight weeks later, they asked ''how are the follow ups going??''  (NHS in a nutshell lol).  

       

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    • Posted

      Wow. The ER isn't usually the best when it comes to diagnosis. They told me I didn't need surgery and to see a dr in 2 weeks. I called a specialist that afternoon and he had me come in the following day. Not only did i need surgery on both sides of my ankle but he find another break in the middle of my fibula that the ER missed. So they were basically wrong about everything except for the fact that some bones were broken. I, at the very least, would get a second opinion. Something definitely isn't right for yout ostill be in that much pain. I'm so sorry you are going through this. Please let me know if you ever get a true diagnosis as to what is causing this.

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