Weber Type A Fracture- When Should I Go Back To Work?

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Fell and fractured my ankle last Monday night. Stupid me, I didn't go to the doctor until Thursday because I was so sure it was "just a sprain." You see, I've sprained my ankle 5 times in the past year (had a bad fall, must have damaged the ligaments and they are weak now). I just figured it was the same old, same old. 

I finally went to the hospital at my mothers insistence and yes it is broken. The doctor said it was a Weber Type A Fracture. I refused the cast and got an aircast instead. I am going for a checkup late next week to get another xray and was told it could be 6 weeks or longer to heal. 

I'm having quite significant pain whenever I walk on it, that lasts for hours. If I stay off of it, it is much more bearable. 

I work in an office setting however my job involves lots of walking and climbings stairs in a four storey building, usually daily.

I'm just wondering... can I plan on going back to work this coming Monday? I will obviously see how I feel, if I feel like I do now I will NOT be going back.

What was your healing like? I don't think this is a particularly bad type of fracture but HOLY GOODNESS does it ever hurt. This is my first broken bone. Ouch!

 

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17 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi, I think your foot it telling you something. It would benefit you to keep it elevated, and non weight bearing for a while. 'Rest, ice, elevation, compression' How long  depends, but if you are experiencing significant pain, then let that be your guide. Don't rush things, you may make it worse, or be more likely to develop long term problems, like arthritis later. If it were me, I would be getting the ligaments checked.

    Good luck

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  • Posted

    Hell yes. Hurts like nothing else. Worse than childbirth. And I think your being very ambitious about returning to work in a week. My doc still won't clear me  off since 24 march. And still have bruising and pain. Had fracture tib broken fibula healed now surgery wound almost healed and walking painful and slow. 

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    • Posted

      Jenni, you broke your ankle in March and not cleared ? What kind of break did you have? What kind of work do you do? I broke mine two weeks ago and have my follow up today and going to ask about work. I'm a teacher and start back second week of August.

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    • Posted

      Hey Christina- Sorry to hear about your break but sounds like it was good timing, since it's the summer and you're off! I hope you're feeling better by the time you have to go back to school. I imagine you must be on your feet a lot when working.

      What kind of break did you have?

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    • Posted

      WOW Jenni you must have had a bad break!! You poor thing. I am so sorry to hear about it! What happened!? 
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    • Posted

      I know it feels like forever. I broke fibula and fractured tib I work with children so lifting babies is out or the question. Lifting a 3 litre milf bottle causes pain.i recon recovery from nerve damage was the worst. Now teaching foot how to walk. I need to learn how to lift heal on injured foot while standing wit no support fron uninjured foot. I can't believe I just can't do it. I've got all other movements but this is proving difficult and exersize causes more swelling and bruising. I can feel plate and screws but they're not problematic so they will stay in. You may be ok for well if no surgery  but if you wear the boot make sure you where a shoe on good foot of equal height to boot. Secondarily injury is so common to back hips knees. Google even up shoe. 

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    • Posted

      Oh my gosh that is horrible! Thinking of being able to feel the plates and screws gives me the heeby geebies. You have my utmost sympathies Jenni!!!

      I actually went out yesterday looking for shoes to match the height of my cast. Found some runners that sorta come close. I do have some platforms that would work but hubby and I agreed wearing a platform heel on one foot is not the greatest idea hehe. I'm not super stable on platform heels on the best of days, let alone with an ankle injury!

       

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    • Posted

      So glad u suggested! I just ordered from Amazon! Who cares about aesthetics at this point! Lol! I have this huge air cast boot that people are going to be staring at already and the fact I have no makeup bc I simply will not stand any longer than I have to ! Lol! -- dreading going back
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  • Posted

    Hi Chickenloop,

    Too bad about your ankle injury. Since your fracture is Weber type A, it is uncomplicated and you didn't need surgery. Thank goodness. No surgery means an accelerated healing trajectory without surgical complications.

    Likely most of your pain is coming from damaged ligaments and/or tendons, nerves, etc. resulting from your current injury, and also from consequences of your previous 5 'ankle sprains'.

    An x-ray likely won't show what soft tissue injuries you have sustained, but an MRI or ultrasound (if done properly) could bring to light any soft tissue problems. An orthopedic doctor may not order such diagnostic tests on soft tissue (insurance costs) unless you make a stink about it and emphasize your unexplained, continuing pain.

    You should be sitting down with your doctor and asking him/her pointed questions about when it is safe to be full weight-bearing, either in a CAM boot or otherwise. And remember, though bones usually heal without drama, lingering pain from inflammation and scarring of soft tissues can go on for a long time after you are walking again.

    Again, you need professional advice on timing of return to work. You may need to take an extended leave of absence to give your ankle a chance to heal properly without any long-term problems that rushing back into a normal routine might cause.

    Your unstable ankle will not become magically stable once the bones are knitted. You probably will need an agressive physiotherapy program to break down scar tissue, free up locked tissues, and restore movement, strength, and stability to ankle so you don't suffer more chronic 'ankle sprains'.

    I really hope you find the right information and advice from knowledgable professionals in the field. Remember, you are in charge of your health-- you can not delegate that to any doctor.

     

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your insightful post! Very much appreciated.

      I saw an orthopaedic surgeon about the ankle, he is a friend of a friend and managed to slip me in between appointments. In my province it can take a year on his waiting list to see him, so I was lucky to get in! 

      But, this meant my appointment with him was very short and to the point. He touched the ankle where it was fractured, I squirmed, he sent me for Xrays which found the fracture. He sold me an aircast and told me I should be wearing it for up to 6 weeks. I have an appointment next week to get another xray done. I will definitely ask him more questions by then but unfortunately I have agreed to go back to work next Monday. If the ankle feels as bad as it does today, I will not be going back but not knowing is causing me some anxiety.

      I am trying to remain hopeful that I will be up to going back to work, Doctor did not specify how long I should take off and I got the impression it would all depend on how I felt. He mentioned he would write me a medical note excusing me off work but did not suggest how long that should be. 

      I wish I had thought to ask him more questions, I was kind of in shock that it was a fracture! Wasn't thinking right.  

      I did mention to the doctor my FIVE previous bad sprains and he didn't say much, again it was such a short appointment, but I am going to bring this up to him during our next appointment. If he doesn't feel the need to pursue it, I will talk to my family doctor who is amazing and will probably agree to get it checked out further. There is definitely something wrong with my ankle, 5 bad sprains in a year is insane. I've never had these problems before.

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  • Posted

    Five sprains and a broken ankle? The only way your fracture and surrounding muscles can heal is be completely NWB for six weeks w/your ankle in a CAST. Otherwise, you'll never completely heal with unforeseen future consequences. Even after your foot is out of your cast you'll have to wear a boot, then a mini brace. In fact, you shld be wearing some type of ankle support for a good six months after that just like the professional sports players do. Trust me, as hard as it seems now you'll be happier with the results.

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    • Posted

      Five Sprains and honestly I think it may be more like 6+. I've had quite a few times where the ankle just gave out on me and I fell over and while it didn't take weeks to heal, it definitely damaged the ankle more each time it happened. I never really realized how serious it might be until this time when the ankle just plain gave out on me and I suffered an actual break. I also didn't give most of my sprains time to heal as it was "just a sprain" and I never went to the doctor for it. I should have went to my doctor and asked for time off to heal it but honestly I did not even know it was an option! I figured I would be told it's not bad enough to get off work or something but either way, I should have tried.

      I was surprised by how little the doctor cared about how many times I've sprained it. These were bad sprains too, in fact I didn't even think I had broke my ankle this time because it wasn't THAT much more painful than my previous sprains!

      I did find out today that I am not cleared to go back to work until my follow up appointment this week. I am very relieved as I feel like it is not healing very fast. I went for a grocery shopping adventure yesterday, with my foot in the aircast and went very easy (putting a lot of my weight on a shopping cart) and still it was throbbing and oh so painful afterwards. Definitely my body trying to tell me something. Or maybe this is just how it will be now?? Gosh I sure hope not!

      thanks for your comment Mary. Much appreciated.

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    • Posted

      Get a knee roller to keep the weight off it. You can get one on Amazon. It's worth the investment.

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