Hi all, I found this forum a few months ago and want to offer my story about long term prognosis for a broken calcaneus (200 lb 6'3" male). When I landed on a concrete sidewalk from about 7 feet, I knew immediately that it was broken and made a trip to the ER. I had no surgery but wore a cast for quite a few weeks and recall the pain involved. I had no insurance (I think it was billed about $1200 total for it) and didn't know what PT was. Using a clutch on my civic with a right foot was awkward to say the least. I remember taking the cast off and the atrophy was significant (and it did hurt like heck).
But I want to talk about the long term. I did golf again a few months/ maybe a year after it heeled (no pun intended) and carried heavy sound equipment as I'm a musician. The heel would stiffen up after overuse.
I became interested in tennis a few years later and played for hours at a time. Again, I felt some pain but do enjoy an active life (including hiking area mountains, bike riding, scuba diving, basketball, etc.). When I overdo it, I limp more noticeably and have difficulty stepping on it for a bit or typically next morning in bare feet.
I found this board as I wanted to take up running and was looking into supportive shoes. I run a few miles a stretch and runs are shortened not by my heel as much as general exhaustion or lack of time
That being said, I do feel it always and there is often slight pain, but I never bother to take pain killers, ibuprofen, etc. because it's bearable and I'm just used to it.
Now, probably arthritis has set in. But again, I'm doing active things and am on my feet quite a bit for work. Incidentally, I received PT for a turned ankle on that foot and the PT was amazed at my lack of ROM. I just never noticed it and can cut side to side on the tennis court and jump while playing basketball, etc. Again, it hurts but is bearable and no one notices it.
For some, surgery and pins etc. are needed but not in my case so it's true my break was not that bad (though without insurance and being broke, perhaps I didn't go that option but can't recall). I do recall my x-ray showing that smashed heel in I forget how many pieces as it was long ago.
Anyway, at least for me, I would say that I recovered fully in that I do all the activities that I want to do. I know how to step onto things with it and balance a bit more with the other foot. I easily cope with it and no one can usually even tell. Who knows, I may even try skydiving some day!
I wonder how others have coped with this in the long term? Thanks for listening!