I was a heelie, had a fractured calcaneus that had eight big pieces and a whole lot of tiny pieces due to a car accident. I made it 18 months before the post-trauma arthritis was too much to bear, so went with the sub-talar fusion surgery. I even got the docs to prescribe a bone healing stimulator device which claims a 38% faster healing time. I also found out I had a meta-tarsal fracture, caused by the first doc not putting my heel back together properly, so I was walking on the side of my foot.
Everything was going great until yesterday, I fell while transferring from the knee scooter to my recliner. My other ankle rolled under as I was putting weight on it. The pain was immediate and intense in my leg with the cast. The ER docs said nothing was out of place nor where there more breaks. Great, but this leg is still screaming, claiming I'm stabbing it and trying to rip it apart, and I have a large lump in the muscle about halfway down the cast. Plus I feel so stupid for letting this happen.
So anyone else pull the triple-axle splat while in a cast? How long did the bonus pain last? How about the feeling stupid? Did your docs keep you in a cast longer "for more protection" instead of letting you go to a walking cast at their previously stated time?
I fell twice in the first week post op PTTD surgery. I was reassured both times that the foot was very well protected but I could come in for X-rays if I wanted. The 2nd time I was pretty certain I had done something really bad...it was very swollen inside the splint and hurt a whole lot more.
This morning I swung my legs over the bed to get on the scooter and it is so much better. I wanted to write to you before I even got coffee because I know how worrying it is. If you've already been checked out, keep it elevated and iced ang give it a couple of days. Good Luck!
Oh, and by the way Maria, for me, the "feeling stupid" lasts longer than the pain. It's just wasted emotion though. It happens to everyone at some point, and you just went through a big surgery to get this fixed. You should be protective of it, it's natural and normal.
You most certainly are not alone! I did the same exact thing. As I read what you did I pictured myself doing it. I learned real fast to only get off of the knee walker on the side of your good leg. Never cross over it.
I also had a subtalar fusion along with a couple of other procedures. I fell once on crutches and put all my weight on my cast. I even managed to break the cast! Everything ended up being fine in there after that fall. If you have a large knot, you may want to contact your surgeon to make sure you didn't damage the muscle or soft tissues. I found it was always better to be safe than sorry. My doctor didn't make me feel stupid or anything but he did ask if I was needing some in home care. HAHA I politely declined. You shouldn't feel stupid. Things like this happen. I am more cautious and take my time now when transferring to the scooter to crutches and whatnot. Hang in there and feel free to contact me anytime you have a question. Ginger is a good person to talk to also!
It's now four weeks post-op and my leg has shrunk so much, the cast is trying to fall off. I know it can't, but with that and knowing my foot is no longer in the doc's desired position, the hot spots, and the looseness, tomorrow I'll be asking the docs for a smaller cast. If I'm really lucky, they might let me go to a boot instead, but I won't be holding my breath. I can't wait to get back to weight-bearing with the thing.
I'm doing okay. I was recasted at my last visit because he wanted me limited more but this cast is so big my foot flops around in it. I have two windows cut in mine to do my bone growth stimulator treatments. It has to be against skin to be effective. Glad to hear you're doing we'll. keep us updated on your progress. I go back to my surgeon tomorrow. Hoping for some re growth.
__________________ April 2012
Achilles Tendon Lengthening January 2013
Subtalar Arthrodesis Revision
Talonavicular Fusion Hardware Removal December 2013
I guess I should update too. The new job didn't work out, seems I had some other baggage from the concussion other than just the foot. So now unemployment runs out in a few weeks and new job prospects are looking very dim until I complete rehab for the concussion. That's a lot of work, unpaid of course.
As far as the heel goes, I finally had the fusion three months ago. Today I might get the cast/boot off, if I'm really lucky. I was able to get off the strong painkillers a month after the surgery, but still had occasional days where I really wanted to take them, but managed to figure out the rebound headache afterwards was not worth it. The docs were convinced that I was dealing with nerve injuries more than structural pain after the surgery, so they sent me on to a nerve specialist at Mayo.
It turns out I have neuromas all over the leg, especially where the muscle flap starts and ends, and around every incision. The doc has a fix, he'd like to cut the damaged nerves which could mean permanent skin numbness. Hmm, numbness or severe, intractable, unrelenting, stabbing, burning pain, that does not respond to any medication out there. . . why are you asking me this question again? Surgery is scheduled for the new year - I can't wait!
Next stop, nerve cutting surgery. Apparently I have a bunch of neuromas around the heel where the docs cut in to fix the fracture. As they're all surface nerves, the docs now think the best way to stop the pain is to cut the nerve, then bury the ends into fat and muscle. The ends will form neuromas too, but with no pressure on them and protection from pressure, they should stop complaining.
If this works, the doc is going to get himself a big 'ol hug!
My next is the first week of January. After that, there's something not right with the tendons in my toes, so there may be a tendon release there too.
I wonder now what would have happened, and how many marathons I would have run if the docs would have simply let the damn thing fall off. I'm not minimizing the amputee life, but it sure seems a lot less fuss and a lot quicker recovery than ten surgeries.