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Old 11-16-2004, 06:56 AM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: St. Louis
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Bigdog Two HB User
Brostrom Procedure

I am having a Brostrom procedure (tightening of ankle ligaments) in 7 days as well as probable peroneal tendon repair and removal of (big) exostosis (bone growth) on my medial malleolus. I had arthroscopic surgery in August for impingement and floating stuff in the joint (that wasn't too bad). I still have quite a bit of pain. I do think I need to do this surgery as I have seen three orthopedic surgeons and they all recommended it. The one that is going to do the procedure only does ankles and feet.

I will be non-weight bearing in a cast for three weeks and then weightbearing in a walking cast for another three followed by an aircast for a few months.

Questions: What should I expect in terms of pain and recovery? Any advice? Over the long-term does the Brostrom procedure help with the pain?

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Old 11-16-2004, 07:44 AM   #2
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

I had a bronstrom in March, but it was more for instability that pain... I could no longer do the activities I wanted to because my ankle was always giving out on me. I also had an osteochondral lesion repaired. Recovery wise, my pain was not bad, nothing compared to when I first injured it. I didn't really do anything for the first week becuase I was home on spring break, so I think that helped. Keep it evelated, and stay on top of the pain, and you shouldn't have a problem. I was NWB for five weeks, PWB for 2, and then in a boot for another 2 weeks, and an aircast for maybe 5 weeks. The ligaments have completely recovered, I still have a little loss of Range of motion laterally. But I have also developed secondary tendonitis in my achilles tendon and posterior tibial tendon. I think it was due to 8 months of inactivity (my doctor grounded me in december before my surgery. Let me know if you have any more questions, Id be glad to help. Good luck!!!

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Old 11-16-2004, 08:12 AM   #3
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

Thanks for the advice.

My Brostrom is mainly for instability too. I sprain my ankle about 5 - 10 times a year (I had a grade 3 sprain about 10 years ago in College). This past June I really FUBAR'd it - sprained Deltoid ligament (on other side) and developed post-traumatic impingement and peroneal tendon tear. It has hurt ever since then. I have also sprained/twisted it 4 times since then. So, I am ready to get this over with.

Old 11-16-2004, 10:32 AM   #4
eko eko is offline
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

I had a Brostrom Repair in August '03. I was in a NWB cast for three weeks then in a CAM walker for five, then a soft lace ankle brace. As far as pain goes, I took my pain pills for the first five days, then took OTC as needed. Be sure to keep your leg elevated and iced, it will help with the swelling and the pain. If you do not have ice packs already, buy several bags of frozen veggies (peas), they will form to your ankle better and are cheap. I was expecting the pain to be worse, but I guess it depends on how you tolerate pain. If you have any questions, let me know.

Good luck and let us know how it goes. -eko
"Every good has a better and every bad a worse."

Old 11-16-2004, 10:42 AM   #5
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

I had the Brostrom procedure done in February, was NWB for 6 weeks in a cast, then PWB in a boot for 4 weeks. The first week was very painfull, but it did get much better after that. The worse thing was not being able to drive for 10 weeks. I didn't work for the first 6 weeks.

I also developed tendonitis in my achilles tendon, so recovery has been very slow. However, happily to say I am now back to running (only short distances for now) and its feeling great. It was totally worth it.

Old 11-17-2004, 07:24 AM   #6
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

Thanks for your advice. I'll let you know how it goes.

Its really weird. I can walk (albeit with a limp) and yet I am having this surgery in 6 days and will be in a cast for 6 weeks. Really strange. It seems that if you are going to be in a cast for 6 weeks you usually break your ankle or have some sort of traumatic event where you can't walk at all. No real point here - its just strange planning on not walking and not driving etc.

Old 11-17-2004, 10:47 AM   #7
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

I agree with the oddity of it all. My original injury was 10 years ago, and I just had the surgery last March. I was walking around just fine, then I was on crutches in a cast for six weeks (then walking in a boot for several more weeks while doing PT). As for the planning, go to your DMV and get a form for a temporary handicap thing, take it to your doctor to get it signed, then take it back to the DMV and pick up the thing BEFORE you have the surgery. You don't want to be messing with that after surgery, and it really helps when you go to the store, especially in the first week or two.

I guess I am kind of a wimp when it comes to pain. I stayed in the hospital with the friendly nurse with the big needle for two nights after the surgery (one would have been fine, but I initially went home right after the surgery then had to go back and I was afraid of going home too early again...). After that I was taking percocet and valium as often as possible for a week or two, then tapered it off. I had a lot of pain when I didn't keep the leg up, so I spent the first week on the couch with it up constantly. Then I went back to classes and the only time I had it down was going to and from class, other wise I had it propped up on the desk on a pillow. I couldn't drive for 3-4 weeks because it hurt to have it down long enough to drive anywhere. I had my mom drive me around and I sat there with my foot on the dashboard. After the first 2-3 weeks, though, I was in a lot less pain in general, and just had problems with letting it hang down. My toes turned the most interesting colors! I even kept it up when I went shopping. I drove the little cart around with my foot up in the basket. So between the pain meds and my leg in the way of steering the cart, it was quite entertaining!

Physical therapy afterward was mostly focused on getting my flexibility back, because I had a tendon transfer from my peroneus brevis and that muscle was not happy about it! But it went fine. I am back to 100% now, and have been for a while.

Anyway, best of luck to you with your surgery. Take it easy and I wish you a speedy recovery.

Old 11-18-2004, 06:31 AM   #8
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Douglasville, GA
Posts: 3
Re: Brostrom Procedure

Hello all, I go today to find out when I am going to set up surgery to repair my peroneal tendon. Any recommendation on a time to have it done and a time-table for return to normal activities other than what is medically anticipated?
Jeremy- ATL

Old 11-18-2004, 08:17 AM   #9
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

I had surgery on my peroneal tendon on the 5th of Nov. Had stitches out on the 16th and am now in a walking boot, ankle is wrapped with an ace bandage and I am just starting to bear weight on it, with the crutches. A little slower then I thought. looks like another four weeks, before any major physical therapy etc. So, for now I will be happy wiggling my toes and moving my foot from side to side and back and forth. The first week was tough in terms of getting around, when you can drop the crutches, you are able to do more for yourself. Good luck.

Old 10-23-2008, 09:25 PM   #10
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: south west australia
Posts: 2
Re: Brostrom Procedure

I am waiting to get both ankles done(brostrom) some time next year.Its still quite a wait and i have just broken my left one again while waiting.The pain in both my ankles is intense as ive broken them many times in the past yet i cant get pain relief .I ice them a lot and try not to walk around but the pain never stops.Do i just wait till surgery or does anyone know of a better way to stop the pain?

Old 10-24-2008, 06:01 AM   #11
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Re: Brostrom Procedure

Hi, welcome to the boards.

I assume you mean you sprain them a lot, not that you break them a lot. I also assume you've tried physical therapy with ankle strengthening exercises and it didn't work.

While you are waiting for the surgery, here's a few things that could help:

Wear good sneakers that fit well and are properly laced up. Consider wearing a velcro or lace-up brace inside the shoe, I found a great one at a sporting goods store.

Avoid walking on uneven ground, stick to pavement.

Ice is indeed wonderful. I also benefited from Aspercreme, a cheap medicine that you rub on which reduces pain and swelling. Like taking aspirin, but safer that popping pills every day.

Old 10-27-2008, 03:45 AM   #12
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: south west australia
Posts: 2
Re: Brostrom Procedure

yay thankyou so much for replying!
I'm very new to this site and the net so i don't quite understand how this site works..
I do break them alot (6 or 7 times each) throughout my life. I'm only 33 and all up I've broken 34 bones with alot of surgery, but nothing has ever hurt like my ankles do now.
I always wear my ankle braces even when i sleep.
I take nurofen plus every day (up to 12 a day) ..Im very concerned about my stomach and liver taking all these pills!
Financially I'm not very well of, meaning any nice new braces and shoes are off limits.
I may be in for long wait til (elective) surgery and am having major problems finding a doctor who cares.
Any advice would be enormously appreciated!!

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