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JuneauBren 12-04-2008 01:52 PM

Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
Let me apologize in advance, as this is a long story. About two weeks ago I was carrying one of those extra large laundry detergent bottles in my left hand and my laundry in my right hand down a steep flight of stairs to the laundry room. My flip-flop got caught on the carpet on the stair and I went tumbling down. I dropped the detergent on my left foot and my right foot twisted under all of my weight (I'm not skinny either). I pulled myself up, but could barely walk. I came back to my apartment and called one of the nurses that I work with to ask her advice. She said it was probably just sprained and to ice and elevate the feet and take some type of anti-inflammatory. So this is what I did and continued to suffer for the next two weeks. Finally one night my right foot began hurting very bad so I went to the ER and had some x-rays done. Lo and behold, the bone below my right big toe was broken, as well as the bone on the top of your foot (not sure of the name). My left foot was/is severely sprained, and still swollen, black and blue, and very painful. So the ER doc referred me to a podiatrist who put a cast on me up to my knee, as well as a brace for my left foot. She gave me 15 5 mg Vicodin (to take 2 every 4 hrs) and told me that and ibuprofen would be all I would need, as the cast and brace will alleviate the pain. Well I call BULL. I've had the cast and brace for 4 days now and the pain is no better. I have called her twice and she refuses to give me anything else for pain. The ibuprofen only helps so much and I ran out of the Vicodin today. I live in a very small town in Alaska so we have a shortage of docs here. She is the only podiatrist I know of and there is one ortho clinic, but the foot doc is out of the clinic until next week. I just really don't understand this. Should I be made to suffer because the doctor thinks I shouldn't be in pain? I feel very helpless. I've been in AK for 1 yr. I'm from a large city where doctors would never behave in this manner. Every person I've ever known who had broken bones was always given medication to alleviate their pain.

Rant over - sorry so long.

So my question is, what should I do? I'm still experiencing a lot of pain, but can't seem to get any help. Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

janewhite1 12-04-2008 04:16 PM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
For immediate relief, elevate your foot above your head and stick an ice pack behind your knee. It'll take down the swelling inside of the cast.

If that doesn't help, or if your toes are severely purple since getting the cast, it could be the cast is too tight.

JuneauBren 12-04-2008 10:11 PM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
Thanks for the info Jane. I try to keep both feet elevated as much as possible.

darksilver84 12-05-2008 12:39 AM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
I wouldnt advise putting something behind your knee. thats basic knowledge. especially since you would be moving your legs much, this is just asking for a blood clot in my opinion. im a nurse in trauma, and work regurarly with orthopedic patients.

One commonly known thing is never to put anything under the knee, because that will compress the big blood vessels, and will cause your blood flow to be reduced, and thus rising the risk of having a blood clot formed.
If you add the fact that your leg being elevated, will already have less circulation, the possibility of the cast being too tight, and the cold from the ice also slowing down blood circulation by constricting your blood vessels. i think youd be better off finding another clinic or doctor, or having your cast re-evaluated.

But i STRONGLY suggest you do not follow the advice of sticking something under your knee. anyways, the broken bone is in your feet, i hardly see how putting ice under the knee would help any pain 10-12 inches BELOW that.

JuneauBren 12-05-2008 01:59 AM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
Oh thanks. That's good to know. I definitely don't want any clots, etc. When will this pain go away? This is my first broken bone, so I'm not very clear on how long it will take for this to get better. I will be doing 6 weeks of PT, so hopefully that will give me some relief. But meanwhile, I'm just having to bite the bullet and suffer through the pain, as my doctor feels that I shouldn't have any pain at all anymore since I'm in a cast. Any thoughts on this. Is it normal for me to still be in this much pain and is it normal for my physician to refuse me pain medication since she feels like I should no longer be in pain. Thanks in advance for your advice.

janewhite1 12-05-2008 06:41 AM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
darksilver84: Since the blood vessels and nerves that supply the foot run behind the knee, putting ice there will actually cool the foot down. If you have a cast, it's tough to put ice on the foot directly, so this is almost as effective. I did this for days after my ankle surgery, and it totally saved my life. Many doctors recommend it.

You don't wrap it tightly, and you don't do it with your knee bent, only with your leg supported so there shouldn't be pressure on the veins from the ice pack.

darksilver84 12-05-2008 10:46 AM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
Well i dont think its normal for your doctor to refuse you pain medication, especially since you have something to BOTH feet..

i broke my fibula in august, and after i was put in the cast, i still had pain ffor roughly a week, but my doctor had given me plenty of pain killers( i actually still have some lol)
i guess hes just one of those doctors...

JuneauBren 12-05-2008 12:15 PM

Re: Hi, I'm new here - Question/Statement about broken foot
That's what I thought as well, but she said that the cast should alleviate the pain along with ibuprofen. It's really strange. Everyone I've ever known who has broken a bone has been on plenty of pain meds. She is dead wrong about the cast alleviating all the pain. I mean it's a break and a really bad sprain for goodness sakes. I guess I really have no choice but to deal with it and hope it will continue to get better as the days go on. Thanks for the info though.

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