Should I have pain in walker boot.

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I'm 6 week post op from fracturing my ankle. I've had a metal plate, small screws plus 2 large screws at the bottom of my ankle holding my main ligament in place so it would mend.

I had my cast off 4 days ago and now I have a walker boot on. My consultant advised me to start of partial weight bearing but in 6 weeks he wants me full weight bearing but still on crutches. I'm waiting on an appointment for physio in the meantime but I've got so many questions running through my head amd was wondering if people could help.

My ankle is in so much pain when with the slightest bit of weight.. is this normal?

The 2 large screws will snap at some point, will that hurt even more?

Should I be doing any exercises with my ankle whilst waiting for physio?

I'm petrified of taking the walker boot off and having nothing round my leg, is this normal? It's like I have anxiety over it.

Will I ever walk again?

The swelling isn't around where I has the operation or where I broke my bone, its just under the ankle bone and round the back of my foot, why's that?

At the moment I'm so down about it all, I'm struggling with even looking at my leg because of the skin condition (which I'm trying to keep moisturised and elevated as much as possible) and colour. Please please can someone help put my mind at ease.

Thanks in advance. Nikki.

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  • Posted

    Unfortunately I don’t have many answers but I am literally in the same position! I don’t have the walker boot as it isn’t needed for what I had. But I can’t put any weight on it at all there’s pain and no movement barely at the joint. I keep thinking I’ll never walk again and feel dramatic! Be Interested to see responses. Hope you heal well and mend ok 
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  • Posted

    Awww no. It's horrible isn't it. I really hope we both recover very soon. Thank you so much for commenting it's nice to know I'm not alone. Good luck. X

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  • Posted

    Everything you are experiencing is normal. Continue to ice and elevate. On 4/22/17 a drunk driver hit me and broke my hand and ankle. Ankle had a plate and 6 screws. I was non weight bearing for 9 wks, partial wb for another 9 wks then full wb. Partial weight bearing means to only allow your foot to rest on the floor in the boot. The boot has weight to it so this is why you only allow your foot to rest on floor. (Per my surgeon). Don’t worry about screws breaking right now. Also gently rub your skin with warm olive oil. Don’t use lotion because you want something that’s going to provide moisture to your skin. Do not put anything over your incision though. The best advice I can give you is to listen to your body. I just had surgery on February 1st to remove the plate and 4 of the 6 screws because they were causing so much pain. As far as exercises for your ankle just do light ankle pumps as if you are pushing on the gas and do the alphabet with your foot. Go slow. Do not rush the healing process. Thank your body for working so hard st repairing itself. Good luck!
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    • Posted

      Thank you so much for your response. So sorry to hear about your situation. I will take it easy. Glad it's all the normal stuff to go through. I was just mostly concerned about the amount of pain when just resting my foot on the floor. Thank you again. Hope your well now. x

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  • Posted

    Ok calm down! Breathe! It’s all going to be ok... we are all here for you, all going through pain and I’m totally anxious at times!!! Are you kidding me!!!!. Pain is everywhere just when you thought it was over with!! Plus I get worried about not being social enough right now like that matters! 

    Feeling vulnerable is what makes us so anxious!! I would just wrap the ankle up in something else that makes you feel more comfy!

    And pain can occur anywhere around the injury site. There are all these nerve endings healing. Keep being brave!! Reach out and keep going!!!

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  • Posted

    It's pretty normal to experience all the things you have mentioned, I've been down for 3 months, myself, and my dreams of being a foot model were stunted. (You won't be down this long, I had extra downtime due to a surgical site infection and added plate removal surgery recovery time). Reading the post threads on this website can be good therapy to get some of the experience others have as they proceed on this weird journey. Ice that sucker, elevate, massage,  and trust in your surgeon, do the physical therapy, and you'll be back on your feet in no time.. The foot model thing was a joke, too. Just think, now you can binge watch all the shows. 

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  • Posted

    Hi Nikki, I'm nearly 4wks post-op and still in a cast. I am so anxious, every worst case scenario running through my head! My main being will l walk properly again and even more important to me, will l manage at work as l can be on my feet 10hrs!

    It's such a worrying time, no wonder we're all down!

    Big hugs to you ?

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  • Posted

    I felt the same way. How could I possibly walk after this surgery and being off my feet and being in such pain! But you get better day by day little by little. 

    It does get depressing though but it only keeps getting better!

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  • Posted

    I'm so sorry for all that you are going through... sad

    I had a different type of fracture that didn't require surgery, but I can assure you that my swelling was (and is) in the same place as yours. I still have a small pool of swelling under the ankle bone that comes and goes but stubbornly refuses to go away completely. That just seems to be the spot it gets stuck at.

    When I was transitioning to weight bearing I was told to let pain be my guide. So, if you have pain, go really really slow. You may not be able to meet your doctor's timeline (you may need longer, and that's ok).

    I very much encourage non weight bearing range of motion exercises since you are trying to get weight bearing again. If you do them with both feet you can see your end goal in your good foot (helps to monitor your progress too). In addition to flex and then point and the writing of the alphabet with your toe another good one is circles with your toes in each direction. Make as complete a circle as you can. Again, let pain be your guide and don't overdo it.

    Hope you have a speedy recovery!

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  • Posted

    Hi Nikki!

    32 years ago, I was hit by a car crossing the street. I shattered every bone from my knee down. 

    The doctor at that time didn't want to put plates or screws in, because he said i wound wind up with arthritis. I spent two years in a cast, because the bones just wouldn't heal. 

    When the cast came off, I walked the same day without PT.  Now 32 years later, I had an ankle replacement 12 weeks ago, due to very bad arthritis and I'm still not able to put weight on the leg because my incision is taking forever to heal. With this ointment called Santyl, my incesion is almost healed, after using it for almost two weeks. 

    And like you, I'm scared to death to take my first step. When I was in my early twenties, I couldn't wait to live life, now at 53, I'm not so brave. But, from everything I've read about the ankle , tibia and fibula, it takes longer to heal than any other bones. 

    All I can say is be patient and you will eventually walk and be back to normal. 

    It's frustrating but there's no quick fix. 

    Wishing you a pain free, speedy recovery. 

    Hang in there. 

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  • Posted

    Hi Nikki. Yes, it's normal to have pain with the boot on. I really think that it's more pain with the boot. I've been in so much pain that I had to take the boot off, cause it was rubbing against my incisions. I also had to take the boot off just to get some kind of sleep. I wouldn't advise you to do nothing except what the doctor tell you to do. I'm 7 wks post op, and I go to the doctor next week. I'm hoping he tell me that I'm getting better and that I can beat a little weight now. You will get better soon, just have patience. That's the only thing that has gotten me through this terrible ordeal. At first I was like you. Scared and terrified and in lots of pain, but I realized that some of the pain is nerves and bones healing, so nothing I could do. Good luck, and just find something to do to kill time, cause that's all you can do now.

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  • Posted

    Thank you so much for all your advice and easing my mind. I'm due to start putting weight on my ankle in a week and even when resting my foot on the floor it's painful. But once it's down for a while it eases.

    Can people tell me how they built up the courage to put weight on their ankle and how they dealt with the shocking pain when standing on it? Thanks again in advance. Nikki.

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