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Six Week Anklebreakerversary

Monday, August 18, 2014

Today marks 6 weeks since I slipped and broke my right ankle, and I believe healing is coming along as it should.

Shortly after the break, a couple of friends lent me boots that they had for their previous injuries, and I brought them to my 2 week appointment for the ortho to look at. He said one was too big and the other might work, but I could not go into a boot until the 4 week mark. My last appointment, 11 days ago, was the 4 week mark and I brought in the boot thinking I was going to be put into it. After looking at it again, he said it would not provide the support I needed, as it was too low. He further said he wanted me to stay in the cast until today (August 18).

However, I was tired of the cast – I was tired of the weight of it, I was tired of being unable to sleep well, I was tired of not being able to get around without a wheel chair or crutches, and I was tired of the tightness when my lower leg and foot swelled. I wanted to start moving the leg around so I could start rebuilding the muscles that had atrophied. After some discussion (actually it was more begging), he agreed to put me in a walking boot. They had boots there, but he thought they were $300, which would have been out of pocket. At that price I decided to stay in the cast for 10 more days. After checking with the nurse, however, she said the one I needed was $70. To me, $70 to get out of the boot 10 days early was worth it, and off came the cast!

I spent several days after that using crutches and slowly putting more weight on the boot. I am happy to say that I now no longer need the wheel chair for anything (the cats use it for a bed), including getting in and out of the shower (I have a shower stall into which I need to step down, not a tub, so getting out was tricky), and I haven’t used the crutches since probably last Thursday. The doctor said that I should sleep into the boot until today, but I took it off on Saturday, and I can sleep on my left side rather than strictly on my back. However, I can’t sleep on my right side and I still need pillow support no matter how I sleep, but that’s fine. I am making progress.

I take the boot off anytime I am sitting, and I continually move my foot up and down to get the range of motion back. I have not been cleared to move the ankle back and forth yet, and I honestly don’t think that it’s quite ready for that. I will admit that there were a few days that I overdid walking and I was in some pain afterward. I thought I messed up something, but the next day there was no pain, so I think that means I am making gains. Some of the pains I have are not even in the break area, which probably means it is from using atrophied muscles (as in post-exercise muscle soreness), as well as from some of the soft tissue damage I am sure I did. The foot is still somewhat bruised looking and the calf is pretty skinny, but I know that’s all temporary.

My next appointment is this Thursday and I will ask the doctor about whether I can start walking in a pool and whether I can start some additional stretching exercises. He probably won’t order official PT for another 2 weeks, but I think as long as I am not hurting anything that I should start doing what I can as soon as possible. Not only do I need to build the muscles back, but my cardio and my endurance have suffered, too. When I am up and moving around for the day, I am wiped out by late afternoon and can easily take an hour nap and then get my regular 7-8 hour night’s sleep. I suppose the tiredness is because my body is using its energy to heal itself in addition to my increased physical activity.

While this whole ordeal has been frustrating, when I look back at my progression in 2 week increments, I am happy with where I am now and look forward to continued improvement.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • ACTIVE_AT_60
    Just saw this ... sorry to hear! HealSTRONG
    1309 days ago
    I hope you regain the full range of movement of the ankle...It is tough without it.

    1311 days ago
    Glad to hear your healing. emoticon
    1311 days ago
    Carolyn, you are making great progress. Since you are being so diligent about exercises and keeping moving, I'm sure you will continue to surpass your doctor's expectations.

    Glad you are on your way!
    1311 days ago
    I am so happy to hear your healing is coming along fine and you now have the cast off. I am sure you are looking forward to your Physical Therapy coming up.
    Thank goodness the nurse told you about the $70 cast that would work for you.

    Sending you Positive Healing Thoughts your way! emoticon

    Sharon emoticon
    1311 days ago
    emoticon Sounds as if you are making the necessary progress.
    1311 days ago
  • PICKIE98
    This healing time is crucial to what your body will grow into when you age.. ONe bad move and pain will be your friend for life! you are blessed to have access to the boots and wheelchair,etc.. So glad you are healing well...
    1311 days ago
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