Pain 17 weeks post ORIF

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I'm 17 weeks post ORIF for tri mall fracture on my right ankle. On the left side of my ankle I have a pin/screw and a plate and screws on the right side. I am walking indepedently in trainers with a bit of a limp but that does seem to be getting better. I am still getting a fair bit of intermittent pain on the left side where the pin is. Site of pain varies slightly sometimes its over the bone other times underneath it, Sometimes it hurts more when I walk, sometimes it makes no difference if I'm walking or sitting down. On somedays there is no pain at all but most days it is there to some degree. My last xray 4 weeks ago showed bones had healed nicely. My physio did an ultrasound to check for tendonitis but that was clear. I know I'm to expect pain and swelling (which I also have) but I am getting very tired of this injury and recovery. My physio says I'm improving week on week but to me the improvement seems miniscule. I'm feeling very despondent. Once again would be good to hear from anyone further along this difficult journey and get some reassurance.

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  • Posted

    I'm not sure you will like my reply but I'm a year out from bilateral ankle fractures, with pins and plates in my left ankle. I still have pain and swelling, especially in the evenings, when a storm comes through, or if I try to wear " cute" shoes. wearing a brace on your ankle will help, wearing supportive shoes helps and "gag" I hate to say it but weight loss helps as well. I take anti-inflamatories daily and am considering getting my plates and screws removed to see if that helps my pain and swelling. I was told at one point that soft tissue damage and scarring can cause chronic pain, and also that I may have arthritis now? I don't know what to believe but some peoples pain seems to go away, but most of us on here still have some pain. Sorry.......

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  • Posted

    Hi hang on in there and be patient!!! I KNOW ITS HARD! Sometimes we have to be as kind to ourselves as we are to others. I had a different op in the talus dome and tendons and had pins and plate! My operation eventually allowed me to have plate and screws removed 9 months after original operation and my pain subsided a lot! Not sure if this will be an option for you? I still have stiffness early morning and evening and have to alternate between flats and heels nearly 3 years later but am pain free mostly and have my life back thank goodness! Just say to yourself every day its one day more of healing! Soaking foot in epsom salts helped me too as I now have arthritis in there but I never thought I would ever reach this stage and am so grateful to my surgeon. I still do my exercises every day too! ONE DAY AT A TIME is the best road to recovery! BEST WISHES X

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  • Posted

    i ha a really bad trimalleolar fracture in april of 2018. it was repaired with two plates and 14 screws. after many many months of recovery, physical therapy, braces, special shoes, etc...nothing was helpimg. the pain and swelling just wouldnt go away. i consulted with my dr again and decided to get the hardware removed since the xrays and MRI showed the bone had healed well. ..it made a huge difference in my pain level, mobility and outlook on life. i still have other issues from the break with scar tissue contractong my toes and neuropathy on the bottom of my foot but the pain and issues i was experiencing from the hardware is gone.

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    • Posted

      since there are a few people on this feed who had hardware removed and got some pain relief from the removal. Can you describe the process of getting hardware removed, do they put you under, is there pain, any limited mobility at first or recovery time? I am considering removal but am leery of surgery......was it worth it as far as having less pain and swelling?

      Thanks!

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  • Posted

    Hi. I am going to be 4 years this August ORIF, broke tib and fib, 2 plates and 12 pins, horrid plaster blisters as cast too tight but bones healed well but despite constant physio and following doctors orders I never regained good range of movement and was always in pain. Had hardware removed after a year, leaving only a few pins in, thought that would help and it did for a short time, but after CT scan was told I now had arthritis which will eventually require a fusion, also a bone spur and some loose bone fragments that i had surgery on 9 weeks ago. Unfortunately i now have pain in different areas than I had before, im again attending physio and hoping for the best but to be honest I've just had to accept this is the way my ankle is now. 1 of the doctors at clinic told me the same thing a few years ago. I'm due to see my consultant in 3 weeks and im hoping he will be able to give me an update on how things are medically since the surgery. I wish I could be more positive but this has been ongoing for almost 4 years now and my optimism went long ago im afraid. Im 53 this year and think maybe if I had been younger things mightve been different. But everyone's recovery and experience is different, and 17 weeks is still early, i didn't go back to work until almost 6 months after. I wish you well with your recovery. X

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    • Posted

      Since there are a few people on this feed who had hardware removed and got some pain relief from the removal. Can you describe the process of getting hardware removed, do they put you under, is there pain, any limited mobility at first or recovery time? I am considering removal but am leery of surgery......was it worth it as far as having less pain and swelling?

      Thanks!

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    • Posted

      Hi,

      Yes it is removed under general anaesthetic but it was very quick and I came home same afternoon! For me the pain lessened considerably the day it was removed. Hope this helps!

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    • Posted

      Getting the hardware out was the best decision ever! The surgery itself was nothing like having the hardware put in after I broke it.They went back in through the same incision, I also had removal of scar tissue that was causing my toes to contract. I stayed overnight in the hospital(only because I have low blood pressure ) and the pain was not horrible. I was allowed to weight bear as tolerated the next week. Went back into physical therapy for a bit and wore a boot for about 6 weeks. The pain and swelling were considerably diminished after getting the hardware out. It was a good choice for me. I still have issues but not related to the hardware anymore. Good luck

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    • Posted

      Was taken to theatre around 2pm and walked with crutches to the car 8pm the same day. Was general anaesthetic, they went in through 1 of the old scars and another one at my snkle bone. It definitely eased the pain a bit for me. I think the optimum time is around a year after surgery to remove them. I dont regret it for a minute. My 3rd op for the bone spur and tidy up was keyhole snd the scars are less than an inch in size.

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  • Posted

    Hi

    i totally understand your frustration ive had the same surgery and its been such a challenge and pretty life changing i was a post lady walking 7 miles a day . im now at 8 months yes lots of improvement can now drive and do most things however my actual walking stride is still very restrictive cant run or even stride out still gets uncomfortable after about 2 hrs walking havent been able to go back to my job . ive just had Cat scan to see why recovery is taking so long . These types of injury and surgery can take over a year so keep your chin up it will improve its still early days for yours . Good luck

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  • Posted

    good luck to you. i am having my hardware taken out. I HEAR THIS MAY HELP WITH PAIN AND SWELLING ( caps on by accident)

    i did have relief from pain and swelling for awhile, but both came back.

    I'm 2 1/2 years since my surgery.

    its been slow going but its gets alittle better everyday and some days it feels like no progress has been made at all.

    you've got this and so do I!!!!!

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  • Posted

    Hi Katherine my journey is I am also 17 weeks post Orif Surgery and have just had my final visit to physio. In all I have had three sessions, 2 in the early boot wearing stages and this one today. I am probably one of the very fortunate ones who has been lucky with the healing and my progress has been so far trouble free. I have pretty much gained full ROM apart from the achilles being a little bit more stubborn, but will continue doing the stretches to get it back firing on all cylinders again!!. Again I am lucky that I have not had to endure any pain once out of the boot and pretty much continue to walk as much as I can to strenghten my leg and calf which was severely atrophied whilst being held hostage in plaster for nearly 8 weeks!!!

    I suffered a tri-malleolar fracture with dislocation on my left ankle of which now has 3 plates, 14 pins and two screws!!! - touch wood I have not had any ill effects from the hardware and I am now coming out of this horrific injury the other side, feeling much better and much more optimistic about making a complete recovery. Believe me at the beginning I thought my life was over!!!! Hang in there and perservere with your recovery. Everyone is different and recovery for some is less stressful than others. I thank God every day that my recovery has progressed well and I would not wish this type of injury on anyone!!!

    Best wishes to you xx

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