Aug 10, 2014

Broken Ankle Diary - Week 2

Broken Ankle Diary Week 2

Entries: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

Continuing the saga.  Because being broken is my new hobby.


So apparently Casscells Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine doesn't feel like answering their phone or calling me back.  I would like everyone to know whose fault it is if I die of deep vein thrombosis (Casscells' fault - to be clear).  If, however, it's just a calf cramp, then I'd like you all to forget that I posted this and instead be impressed with how stoically I handled it all.


They called back (4:02pm), and I had an appointment today.  Overall, it felt very silly and unnecessary.  I'm slightly more at risk for blood clots (because birth control) so despite my lack of "excruciating" pain (evidently blood clots would be excruciating) they ordered an ultra sound.  But not of my calf, where the non-excruciating pain is.  Instead the thigh.  So now, several hours later, I know that I am safe from blood clots in my thigh, which has no symptoms and has never had any symptoms, and that a blood clot is unlikely in my calf, but if there is one there, it's not a big deal unless it moves to my thigh.

Yep.  A productive morning.

On the plus side, I got a really good workout crutching the long hallways of the medical center.  They offered me a wheelchair, but really, how much exercise do I get?  Besides, gotta circulate that blood and prevent clots.  :P


A side effect of the doctor's visit was increased conversation about my leg, and people staring at my foot, and after some admiration of the hues of blue and purple, IT collectively decided that I would from now on elevate my foot at work.  At first my boss/supervisor was trying to get me to put my foot on my desk and I said, "No, I won't!"  And then they gave me the ottoman from the sofa in the lounge area, so I had to give in, because there's no good excuses anymore and to refuse someone's ottoman is just insulting.

This morning the foot is much more normal looking, and now they're totally justified, and I will have to continue elevating even though it is quite frequently uncomfortable (the blood rushing back into your foot when you put it back down can actually be painful, which makes mornings unpleasant).

11pm: We went to a baseball game with the company today.  Go Phils!  Because of the amount of walking involved, I was placed in a wheelchair, manned by my father (I work with my dad, btw).  Despite the wheelchair, there was still more crutching than my norm and I was tired and sore by the time the game ended.  My father, on the other hand, was well into his cups, not tired at all, and rapidly approaching the loud and less mentally/physically acute (but more happy) stage of drinking.  This was not unusual, because many of my coworkers were also loud and happy.  However, they were not the ones steering my wheelchair.

Since my father is chronically impatient, we had to leave before everyone else, ended up taking a different elevator, and getting completely misplaced from our group.  While not terribly traumatic, I can tell you that not having control over where I'm going is not a pleasant experience for me.  I'm a bit of a control freak, and I hate giving that control over to someone who might have different goals than myself, or who won't listen to my input.

The rest of the night was great though, and I got to commiserate with a couple other previous bone breakers, and share my not-so-epic falling at the dog park story, and eat chocolate covered pretzels.  In case you were wondering, if you ever need to get on my good side, chocolate covered pretzels is a great start.  The whole night could have been miserable and I'd still be happy as long as chocolate covered pretzels were present.  But it wasn't miserable at all, and the Phillies won, and now the night is late and it's time for bed.


So much soreness.

I wanted coffee, and to use my crutches as little as possible, so I rolled on over to the kitchen in my office chair.  People laughed, but I filled up my water, got coffee, AND 2 delicious mini muffins.  So I win.  Oh, and I ran into someone's desk.  My steering is not terribly skillful.


Hooray, it's Friday!

I like my job, I really do, but the past couple weeks I have been thoroughly exhausted by the end of the week, and Saturday/Sunday provide some much needed recoup time.  My palms, armpits, back, and triceps are soooore!

Super late at night: a couple friends came over.  We laughed, we drank, we became drunk, and we made an emergency run to Taco Bell.  Much abuse occurred to the casted leg.  Pain anticipated tomorrow.


Minimal pain!

For whatever reason, I mentally psyched myself out about how difficult it was going to be to run errands (car appointment), so I got all tense for no reason.  It wasn't (obviously), and logically I knew it wasn't, but I didn't relax until we got back home and all obligations for the day were over.  Side note: we went to the movies and learned that they'll let you through without a ticket if you're clearly disabled and say you're waiting for someone.  Also, Guardians of the Galaxy was awesome!


Not as much sitting around as I would like.  Don't you people understand?  Laziness is at the top of my priority list right now!  (Technically it's mostly of my own doing.  But while laziness is at the top of the priority list, taking responsibility for my actions remains firmly at the bottom.)

Have you ever been drunk on crutches?  Does this count as drunk driving?

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  1. It's fun reading these because your experience is so similar to mine. I remember how I stopped drinking water because it was too much effort to fill up the bottle, but thinking maybe it was good to get dehydrated because I didn't particularly want to make the trek to the bathroom anyway. And I remember the sore triceps, and the unpleasant sensation of blood rushing back into your foot after elevating for a few hours. I would sometimes stay at work late just to delay the de-elevation process as long as possible.

    1. How long did it take for de-elevating to stop being so unpleasant? Mine's pretty painless at this point and my toes are almost normal colored!

  2. Doctors never do what I ask, either. I tell them I feel like this is related to that, but then they form a totally different opinion and ignore whatever I say haha. I can't complain most times as I have zero medical knowledge.

  3. Being on crutches at work sucks, however, someone did suggest office chair races when I was inmobile. Might as well make the best of it!

  4. Elevating is so important though, as is moving so you don't get the clots!

    I would've freaked about leaving the Phillies game and not being in control of where I'm going.

  5. Jenn, thanks for sharing your experiences, and thanks for you and Nicky's comments to my posting on your first week's blog posting (i posted as anonymous). I am Erin by the way. I am currently in my 5th week in a cast on my left foot. Last Friday I had my 4 week appointment with my ortho. After the cast was sawn off the doc examined the foot. The first time your leg and foot appears from under the cast it looks gross and wired. I begged and pleaded her to put me in a CAM boot…but she heard none of it. Now I am sporting a bright pink cast. My first one was white. The ortho tech also fitted me with an open toe cast sandal. Although I have a cast sandal, I warned by the doc that I am strictly non-weight bearing-which means I am still hobbling on crutches. BTW I did not get a cast sandal when I first got my cast. When I asked the ortho tech why she mentioned that I needed to be stickly non-weight bearing on my left foot and sometime a cast sandal may tempt you place weight on the foot. Now that I am almost half way through the doc had recommended one.
    Just a bit of background as to why I am in a cast. For couple of months now, may be around April or May, I had this pain radiating around the arch of my foot; often the pain worsened with activity and improved with rest. In January I started a Cross-Fit class as way of getting and staying shape. I just thought that this may be related to increase and rigorous training and just tried to ignore it. As the pain was getting to nag me, I decided it was time check with a sports medicine ortho. At my first visit she took x-rays and nothing was visible. She advised that I rest and stay off any major training for couple of weeks and to see. After laying low for couple of weeks, I started training again and the pain returned. This time I made another appointment and visited. She advised me that I should schedule to do get a MRI to see what was going on with my foot. A day or so later after the test, the ortho office called me and said that the results have come in and that the doc would like to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. I knew that something was not right….but never thought that I would have to have a cast. When I met with the doc she showed me the MRI images and broke the devastating news- a “Navicular stress fracture” And the treatment was a placing the leg in a non–weight-bearing cast for 6-8 weeks. I was in shock… When the ortho tech asked what color cast I want I could not even think…I just went with first color she mentioned…which was plain white. After fitting me with crutches, and showing me how to walk, she handed me my left Teva sports sandal and said: “well you won’t be needing this for a while….” That’s when I realized that I will be on one leg and wearing one shoe for some time. For the first time after the cast was fitted, and I crutched my way out of the ortho’s office holding one sandal in my had just felt wired.

    1. My cast is pink also! I can just imagine that the foot and leg will be pretty gross after 5 or 6 weeks of hair growing and dead skin piling up. My leg's begun to atrophy enough already that I can almost fit my hand in there. I'm almost tempted to tape a razor to a ruler and give shaving a go! Almost...

      That sucks that you had to be non-weight bearing, but I'm glad you persisted and got the MRI and found out something was wrong! I'd imagine the injury would only get worse over time if not treated.

    2. I had never heard about a navicular stress fracture before this, but according to my doc and also some searches on the web I found that if you are not non-weight bearing it could lead to delayed unions, or nonunions- which means surgery which I want to avoid at all costs. Also you are right having cast means people always staring at your casted leg. So this past weekend (I got my new pink cast this past Friday) a friend and I went and got a pedicure. Like my friend said, “if you are going to have your toes exposed for awhile, you might as well keep them looking nice. Since it is mid August, things have been a bit slow at work…and we don’t have to meet much clients. This gives me a chance to dress a bit casually….which means I was bit bold and started wearing a filp flop on my good foot to work….which is actually totally comfortable and also helps with the crutches.
      How is your foot doing now? When do you go back for a check up? I have another week in this cast. That will be a total of six weeks by then. At that point I will know if I get a boot or not. Happy healing!

    3. It's good! I'm feeling very fortunate, because I've been able to start using the foot this week. My next appointment is in a week and a half, and I'm pretty sure that they'll put me in the walking boot at that point.

      I'm glad you're able to wear more comfortable footwear! And I hope things go well at your check up!

  6. Yes Jenn it counts as drunk driving while crutching. U almost fell down the stairs twice.


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