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Old 04-26-2011, 07:28 PM   #1
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Broken Heel

Fell off a ladder 3 weeks. In a cast. Have electric shocks, my foot is extremely cold, and my toes turn cold when I walk around using my walker. Has anyone gone through this? Am very scared.

 
Old 04-27-2011, 04:50 AM   #2
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Re: Broken Heel

How many weeks since the accident? 3? Its usually 12 until weight bearing, with partial sometimes earlier. Keep the foot elevated, really elevated. I slept with it on two pillows, and had two pillows on my recliner.

Its a long recovery, 12-18 months, but you will be doing lots of stuff by 4-5 months. When you start walking, wear good socks and shoes. I wear wool hiking socks. Light wool in the summer, and not they are not hot or scratchy.

Physcial therapy is very important. I started ROM at 6 weeks. Once you can put weight on your foot there will be lots of it. One of the most important things is to do it.
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:57 AM   #3
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Re: Broken Heel

Here is the crash course in being a Heelie.

Lots of stuff to read about here.

But most people are non weight bearing 12 weeks, some get partial before that. Some where the boot and walk, I was told not to, cause it would make me uneven.

Keep your foot elevated, I mean elevated. I slept with it on 2 pillows, and two on recliner, with it all the way back.

Circulation will get better when you start walking. Yes, you may have a purplish look to your foot when it is down. yes you will get weird shooting pains and sensations from time. Yes, most of the feeling will hopefully come back.

The severity and recovery time really varies. But a year is ball park, with gains until 18 months, with people saying it still gets better for a few years.

You may want to wear a compression sock when you start to walk. Sorta knee stocking, that is very tight and helps with swelling. I wore one until about 10 months, and was told some do forever. I still get a bit of swelling around 24+ months. Wear a sock over it.

I wear light wool hiking socks year round. Get good cushiony socks.

Physical therapy is very important, be strict and do it. I started with range of motion at about 6 weeks.

Your calf is going to shrink a lot and your thigh. You can help your thigh a little by doing leg exercises, with out weight.

Calve raises will help the calf, when the time comes. You will have to do them with both feet. As time goes on put more weight on the bad foot. I still can’t do one footed, and probably never will, but many can.


This is a life changing event, that’s just the way it is. IMO you got to be tough and push, you will now when it really hurts and time to stop.

Many people get custom made orthotics a few months after they start walking. Wear them for short periods at first, increasing time. You will need a deeper shoe to fit it. New Balance plus others make them. You will probably never wear cheap footwear again.

Some people say don’t spend much on shoes the first year, but I say you got to wear something. You will probably need a wide shoe. Some wear two sizes, some just tighten the other, which is what I do.
When I went back to work I started with 6”lace up boots, cause my ankle was weak, I eventually moved up to 8” and find 8 a lot better. I wears 8” lace up boots for pretty much everything.

Fusing is a common treatment for this, they screw your foot together. Which limits movement, but you may have lost it anyways. I didn’t have surgery, cause I was in to bad of shape. I may someday, if the arthritis gets to bad.

Yes, you will most likely get arthritis.

As for pain, for me its not so much the heel but the outside ankle, because I also shattered my subtalar joint, which is not uncommon. I also have problems with my achilles. Not a lot of pain until I started walking. But it gets better, every week and month. Things were decent by month 11.

I started walking at 12 weeks, still used wheel chair a bit for couple weeks. Wheel chairs do help. Some people get knee walkers or scooters. Then I moved to walker some of the day, then walker and cane, and then just cane. I was to cane in 3-4 weeks, but still using waker when I went places for awhile.

By 5-6 months I think the walker was gone. In the beginning you will notice improvement almost weekly, if you try. Then it slows up a bit. After year it got slow for me.

It is illegal in many states to drive with just your left foot, so keep that in mind. Many people start driving with 3-5 months.

Many heelies have problem on uneven surfaces, due to less range of motion. This may be worse when it fused.

As for pain, I don’t have a lot on normal days around the house. But if I do a lot I feel it, with increased activity. Everything has a price. You have to spend some pain currency.
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:24 PM   #4
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Re: Broken Heel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zerk View Post
How many weeks since the accident? 3? Its usually 12 until weight bearing, with partial sometimes earlier. Keep the foot elevated, really elevated. I slept with it on two pillows, and had two pillows on my recliner.

Its a long recovery, 12-18 months, but you will be doing lots of stuff by 4-5 months. When you start walking, wear good socks and shoes. I wear wool hiking socks. Light wool in the summer, and not they are not hot or scratchy.

Physcial therapy is very important. I started ROM at 6 weeks. Once you can put weight on your foot there will be lots of it. One of the most important things is to do it.

 
Old 04-27-2011, 04:27 PM   #5
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Re: Broken Heel

Thanks for the advise. Yes, I find elevation certainly helps. When I am up and around too much the foot throbs and turns blue. I know it will be a long recovery but had no idea how long!!! This is some injury! Unlike a broken arm or sprained ankle. People don't seem to understand how bad it is and want me back to work after just 3 weeks. I will follow my doctor's request and take off for the 3 months though.

Thanks for responding. Some great advise that I surely will follow.

 
Old 04-27-2011, 04:55 PM   #6
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Re: Broken Heel

Did you mention the electric shock sensation to your doctor? You would want him to rule out nerve damage. Does the foot turn blue and feel ice cold mainly when the foot is down or does it happen all of the time?

 
Old 04-27-2011, 05:56 PM   #7
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Re: Broken Heel

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Did you mention the electric shock sensation to your doctor? You would want him to rule out nerve damage. Does the foot turn blue and feel ice cold mainly when the foot is down or does it happen all of the time?

 
Old 04-27-2011, 06:00 PM   #8
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Re: Broken Heel

Hello and thanks for responding,

Yes, I did mention the electric shocks several times to my doctor. She did not seem at all concerned and said that would go away. The blue/black toes only turn that color when my foot is down, but goes away when my foot is elevated. The cold blue sensation comes several times aday and no amount of blankets will warm it up. My doctor, again, did not seem concerned about this. Am limited to doctors because I have no medical insurance. I also called her on a Friday for more pain medication and she did not call it in till Tuesday!

 
Old 04-27-2011, 06:26 PM   #9
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Re: Broken Heel

The shock feelings are normal. They will probably get more intense. I think its the nerves waking up. You most likely have nerve damage of some kind. Its to early to probably worry about it. I will be more of an issue when trying different pain meds.


When I mentioned elevation, I was not doing it for the sake of pain relief, you need to do it for recovery and healing. It needs to be up almost all the time. Only time it should be down, is when you are driving some place or moving around.
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Old 04-28-2011, 12:36 PM   #10
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Re: Broken Heel

Had an x-ray yesterday. 3 breaks in my foot. No wonder it hurts! I slept with 2 pillows under my foot and am sitting on a recliner with 2 pillows. Now I know that it is best for my recovery as well as making my foot more comfortable. My work kept insisting I come back in a wheelchair, but then my foot would be down most of the day. My doctor gave me a Medical Excuse not to come back for awhile. Still on pain meds. It is the only way I can sleep. Since it is broken on the back of the heel it is very uncomfortable placing my foot straight. Thanks for all your advice. You are better than the doctor

 
Old 04-28-2011, 03:47 PM   #11
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Re: Broken Heel

For sleeping I still untuck the sheets and blankets, to give it free room to move around.
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The good thing is, no one asks me to help them move anymore.

 
Old 04-28-2011, 03:51 PM   #12
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Re: Broken Heel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zerk View Post
For sleeping I still untuck the sheets and blankets, to give it free room to move around.

 
Old 04-28-2011, 03:55 PM   #13
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Re: Broken Heel

Now that it is getting warmer outside (at least here in Pennsylvania) I can certainly sleep without any heavy blankets on top of my foot. With the electric shocks and tingling, the blankets just aggravated the tingling. I know I have a long way to go but I'm very scared of when I walk on it. Afraid it will never be the same again. At times I have panic attacks worrying about it. Guess I should save that for when the time occurs. Each day at a time.

 
Old 04-28-2011, 04:36 PM   #14
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Re: Broken Heel

You need to look at it differently. Look forward to when the doc gives you the ok, which is the next step to recovery.

Things will be different. I still do everything I want to do, just in moderation.
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Old 04-28-2011, 04:44 PM   #15
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Re: Broken Heel

Hi Wendy! So sorry to hear that this happend to you. I had a bad auto accident in late December a lady hit me, I lost control and I hit a tree and broke my heel..this is a slow process but it does get better! I never thought I would walk on it ever from the amount of pain I was in..some days were so bad. I had surgery Jan 20 they put a metal plate in and some screws. I just started partial weight bearing last week and physical therapy 2x a week. It's amazing how much your muscles shrink from not being used for so long! I don't have much pain now, only when doing physical therapy (I am doing it at home as well) and while trying to stretch the foot in different ways, and sometimes it gets very sore while walking on the boot and crutches. I still have my boot, you will probably get one too, it was uncomfortable at first but I got used to it..my foot actually felt safer in it. lol. Did you have, or do you need surgery? Well anyway, You can post questions you have on here or just vent to us here if you'd like I totally understand what you are going through, it will get better soon.

Last edited by suga1013; 04-28-2011 at 04:49 PM.

 
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