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Posted: 8/20/2017 11:49:17 AM EST
Broke my fibula just over a week ago, if the swelling is down by this Tuesday they'll be able to do the necessary surgery, but it's as swollen now as it was five days ago. I've been keeping it elevated, I've been using ice packs, I've been

keeping it compressed. During the day it's in a broken leg boot, at night I wrap it with two ace bandages.

Any suggestions on what else I can do? I haven't been taking nsaids, would that help?
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 11:54:27 AM EST
[Last Edit: 8/20/2017 11:55:32 AM EST by astrocreep96]
You are doing fine, keep it iced and elevated above your heart (2 or 3 pillows on a couch to keep it up).

An isolated fibula fracture (even with medial ankle or syndesmotic injury) should be fine to treat within a week. Rarely are those severe enough to develop sufficient swelling to delay surgery (and if you do have to wait another week it's not the end if the world).

Edit - does it definitely need surgery? I don't know what your exam or radiographs look like, but many ankle fractures can be treated with casting or even a CAM boot.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 11:54:31 AM EST
Take 1200ish mgs curcumin 3 times a day.
Do not eat any inflammatory foods till it heals up.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 11:54:47 AM EST
Are you truly elevating or sitting on a lazy boy. It needs to be above the heart. Check for PT clinics around that may have a Jobst cryotemp. It pushes fluid out.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 11:54:55 AM EST
Contrast baths. Cold for 10 minutes, mild warmth for 5 minutes, cold for 5 minutes, warm for 5 minutes, cold for 10 minutes.

Cold does not have to be ice cold, just really cold tap water, warm needs to be around bath tub warm. Acts like a pump with vasodilation and vasoconstriction.

Cold baths with the foot and ankle completely submerged is better than ice packs.

Find someone that can kinesiotape with a edema and lymphatic drainage technique.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 11:58:30 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By epthunter:
Are you truly elevating or sitting on a lazy boy. It needs to be above the heart. Check for PT clinics around that may have a Jobst cryotemp. It pushes fluid out.
View Quote
Nnnnng, dammit, I need more elevation.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:00:24 PM EST
....leeches?
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:01:12 PM EST
Why are you avoiding Ibuprofen?   That should help to reduce inflammation.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:03:26 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By astrocreep96:
You are doing fine, keep it iced and elevated above your heart (2 or 3 pillows on a couch to keep it up).

An isolated fibula fracture (even with medial ankle or syndesmotic injury) should be fine to treat within a week. Rarely are those severe enough to develop sufficient swelling to delay surgery (and if you do have to wait another week it's not the end if the world).

Edit - does it definitely need surgery? I don't know what your exam or radiographs look like, but many ankle fractures can be treated with casting or even a CAM boot.
View Quote
It's broken all the way across, twisted off. Docs said surgery not mandatory, but advised. Every once in a while I can feel a little click from what I assume is the bone ends moving against each other. Will it ever knit with that going on?
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:22:34 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By McGuy:
It's broken all the way across, twisted off. Docs said surgery not mandatory, but advised. Every once in a while I can feel a little click from what I assume is the bone ends moving against each other. Will it ever knit with that going on?
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Originally Posted By McGuy:
Originally Posted By astrocreep96:
You are doing fine, keep it iced and elevated above your heart (2 or 3 pillows on a couch to keep it up).

An isolated fibula fracture (even with medial ankle or syndesmotic injury) should be fine to treat within a week. Rarely are those severe enough to develop sufficient swelling to delay surgery (and if you do have to wait another week it's not the end if the world).

Edit - does it definitely need surgery? I don't know what your exam or radiographs look like, but many ankle fractures can be treated with casting or even a CAM boot.
It's broken all the way across, twisted off. Docs said surgery not mandatory, but advised. Every once in a while I can feel a little click from what I assume is the bone ends moving against each other. Will it ever knit with that going on?
It's fine if the fibula is broken all the way across, the ankle is held together by ligaments as well.

The necessity of operating on a fibula fracture comes from whether the ankle is unstable or not, and if the overall alignment is acceptable.

Anyway, I'm not saying it does or does not need surgery, just something to ask your surgeon about.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:39:33 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/20/2017 12:42:50 PM EST by JoeJeeps]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Benefactor:
Why are you avoiding Ibuprofen?   That should help to reduce inflammation.
View Quote
Do NOT take Ibuprofen unless your surgeon says it's okay. It inhibits bone growth and you'll likely be required to stay off it before/after surgery.

ETA: Get your foot above your heart as others have suggested. Like 23+ hours a day...it sucks, but helps with healing.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:41:57 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By astrocreep96:


It's fine if the fibula is broken all the way across, the ankle is held together by ligaments as well.

The necessity of operating on a fibula fracture comes from whether the ankle is unstable or not, and if the overall alignment is acceptable.

Anyway, I'm not saying it does or does not need surgery, just something to ask your surgeon about.
View Quote
They were definitely pushing the surgery, but looking at the x-ray, the ends are noticeably misaligned. I'll admit, a big part of why I'm all for surgery is reduced healing time, although if I have to wait too long, especially if they have to re-break it,

that advantage goes out the window.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:42:15 PM EST
If swelling is the body's response to injury, is it possible that reducing swelling slows healing time?

Honest question. I don't know.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:53:26 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By TontoGoldstein:
If swelling is the body's response to injury, is it possible that reducing swelling slows healing time?

Honest question. I don't know.
View Quote
Interesting question. On the other hand, it seems that sometimes the body is it's own worst enemy.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:58:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/20/2017 1:02:38 PM EST by Turboguy]
Originally Posted By McGuy:

Broke my fibula just over a week ago, if the swelling is down by this Tuesday they'll be able to do the necessary surgery, but it's as swollen now as it was five days ago. I've been keeping it elevated, I've been using ice packs, I've been

keeping it compressed. During the day it's in a broken leg boot, at night I wrap it with two ace bandages.

Any suggestions on what else I can do? I haven't been taking nsaids, would that help?
View Quote


Attachment Attached File


My right leg. I had a double tibia (Crack and snapped off the malleolis) with fibular break.

As a charter member of the "I Broke My Leg" Alumni, if you start taking Ibuprofen at this point you'll notice a dramatic reduction of edema around your break.

If you want to supercharge your ibuprofen take it and then have a monster energy drink. Basically that's all that Excedrin is and it works wonders in reducing edema.

After your surgery make sure you *DO NOT* take ibuprofen. It will dramatically slow down your healing time.

Sorry to have to be "That Guy" but I want you to be ready for the pain. The ORIF surgery is hands down the singlehandedly most painful experiences of my life and totally screwed my 1-10 pain scale. Things that used to be a 6 or 7 are now about a 2. Once the block wears off it's going to be colors of pain. No shit. It will go away, but screaming titties it hurt so fucking bad there was no happy place to retreat to, it dragged you right back out and kicked you in the nuts. I fervently hope that Opoids work for you. For me they were totally ineffective. For most people a single vicodin pill puts them in heaven. I was prescribed percocet and when I complained that it still fucking hurt, they told me to take two at a time. Result: Still hurt but now I couldn't shit. Tylenol did a better job to relieve the pain.

Make absolutely sure you do exactly what the doctor tells you to do and do as much physical therapy as you can. I was told that I'd never run again and always walk with a limp. They were wrong. I ran a marathon while deployed and run right around 4-5 miles a day and now you'd never know that I had any injury at all.

And the hardware is still in my leg. I figure that I won't be breaking it there again...
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 12:59:40 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By TontoGoldstein:
If swelling is the body's response to injury, is it possible that reducing swelling slows healing time?

Honest question. I don't know.
View Quote
Not this time.

He needs internal fixation surgery.

If they start cutting him now they'll never get it back together again.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:01:06 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By McGuy:


Interesting question. On the other hand, it seems that sometimes the body is it's own worst enemy.
View Quote
We are telling our athletes to not use NSAIDs for a few days to let the normal inflammatory process start.

However no NSAIDs 2 weeks before surgery. They are blood thinners
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:01:31 PM EST
Broke my tibia last year and swelling wouldn't go down, I'm no medical professional but after I had 2 plates and 7 screws put in my foot started to discolor days later and even ice and elevation wouldn't help. Turns out I had a blood clot (DVT) that ended up moving to my lungs (PE) and I almost had a bad time.

So my only advice is watch for increased bruising/discoloration which is what convinced me to go back to the ER. Good luck OP.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:10:05 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By McGuy:



They were definitely pushing the surgery, but looking at the x-ray, the ends are noticeably misaligned. I'll admit, a big part of why I'm all for surgery is reduced healing time, although if I have to wait too long, especially if they have to re-break it,

that advantage goes out the window.
View Quote
Surgery doesn't do anything to promote faster healing, if anything stripping soft tissue to place an implant may lengthen healing time (in theory, in reality healing time is pretty much uniform across the board).

If the ends are not well aligned, it needs surgery. Again, I'm not trying to talk you out of it, just make an informed decision.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:40:12 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Turboguy:


https://www.AR15.Com/media/mediaFiles/66115/cid_286-285371.JPG

My right leg. I had a double tibia (Crack and snapped off the malleolis) with fibular break.

As a charter member of the "I Broke My Leg" Alumni, if you start taking Ibuprofen at this point you'll notice a dramatic reduction of edema around your break.

If you want to supercharge your ibuprofen take it and then have a monster energy drink. Basically that's all that Excedrin is and it works wonders in reducing edema.

After your surgery make sure you *DO NOT* take ibuprofen. It will dramatically slow down your healing time.

Sorry to have to be "That Guy" but I want you to be ready for the pain. The ORIF surgery is hands down the singlehandedly most painful experiences of my life and totally screwed my 1-10 pain scale. Things that used to be a 6 or 7 are now about a 2. Once the block wears off it's going to be colors of pain. No shit. It will go away, but screaming titties it hurt so fucking bad there was no happy place to retreat to, it dragged you right back out and kicked you in the nuts. I fervently hope that Opoids work for you. For me they were totally ineffective. For most people a single vicodin pill puts them in heaven. I was prescribed percocet and when I complained that it still fucking hurt, they told me to take two at a time. Result: Still hurt but now I couldn't shit. Tylenol did a better job to relieve the pain.

Make absolutely sure you do exactly what the doctor tells you to do and do as much physical therapy as you can. I was told that I'd never run again and always walk with a limp. They were wrong. I ran a marathon while deployed and run right around 4-5 miles a day and now you'd never know that I had any injury at all.

And the hardware is still in my leg. I figure that I won't be breaking it there again...
View Quote
Saw the pic and wondered how you got my x-rays. It was very painful, but I only took I think 3 pain pills. Elevation was the key. As soon as I would lower it to the floor the boiling pain would flow to my foot.

OP, don't try to be too active too soon afterward. I screwed up and went to work 6 days after the surgery for a bitch boss who made zero effort to accomodate my situation (I was on probation, too, and she didn't like me, but I really needed the insurance at that moment). It was miserable, and it took a loooong time for the daily swelling to subside.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:49:49 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By skebe:
....leeches?
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They're slow. Direct venous drain.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:51:54 PM EST
Cut down sodium intake as much as possible and drink tons of water.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 1:57:16 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Turboguy:


https://www.AR15.Com/media/mediaFiles/66115/cid_286-285371.JPG

My right leg. I had a double tibia (Crack and snapped off the malleolis) with fibular break.

As a charter member of the "I Broke My Leg" Alumni, if you start taking Ibuprofen at this point you'll notice a dramatic reduction of edema around your break.

If you want to supercharge your ibuprofen take it and then have a monster energy drink. Basically that's all that Excedrin is and it works wonders in reducing edema.

After your surgery make sure you *DO NOT* take ibuprofen. It will dramatically slow down your healing time.

Sorry to have to be "That Guy" but I want you to be ready for the pain. The ORIF surgery is hands down the singlehandedly most painful experiences of my life and totally screwed my 1-10 pain scale. Things that used to be a 6 or 7 are now about a 2. Once the block wears off it's going to be colors of pain. No shit. It will go away, but screaming titties it hurt so fucking bad there was no happy place to retreat to, it dragged you right back out and kicked you in the nuts. I fervently hope that Opoids work for you. For me they were totally ineffective. For most people a single vicodin pill puts them in heaven. I was prescribed percocet and when I complained that it still fucking hurt, they told me to take two at a time. Result: Still hurt but now I couldn't shit. Tylenol did a better job to relieve the pain.

Make absolutely sure you do exactly what the doctor tells you to do and do as much physical therapy as you can. I was told that I'd never run again and always walk with a limp. They were wrong. I ran a marathon while deployed and run right around 4-5 miles a day and now you'd never know that I had any injury at all.

And the hardware is still in my leg. I figure that I won't be breaking it there again...
View Quote
Shudder.

Mine isn't a tiny fraction of what yours was. My break is right where the second from the bottom screw is on your fibula.

Now I'm nervous. My x-ray shows an open v-notch maybe 3/16 inch wide at the open end on the outside of the break. The other side of the bone is about 1/8 inch from being aligned. (approximate numbers-just from eyeballing the x-ray)

Doctor said without surgery I had a high likelihood of future problems including pain while walking, arthritis and being able to predict changes in the weather.


At the ER they gave me morphine. I took half of one and got pain in the solar plexus that almost had me calling 911, plus it was four days before I took a decent crap again. Oddly, Oxywhatevers work fine for me.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 2:00:12 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By astrocreep96:


Surgery doesn't do anything to promote faster healing, if anything stripping soft tissue to place an implant may lengthen healing time (in theory, in reality healing time is pretty much uniform across the board).

If the ends are not well aligned, it needs surgery. Again, I'm not trying to talk you out of it, just make an informed decision.
View Quote
No rod, they just want to plate it. Seems like a good idea, I know it usually works when welding up broken machines.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 2:08:18 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Turboguy:


https://www.AR15.Com/media/mediaFiles/66115/cid_286-285371.JPG

My right leg. I had a double tibia (Crack and snapped off the malleolis) with fibular break.
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Turboguy:


https://www.AR15.Com/media/mediaFiles/66115/cid_286-285371.JPG

My right leg. I had a double tibia (Crack and snapped off the malleolis) with fibular break.
my broke-leg brother! I too have a plate and screws, but I have one drywall screw going up the bottom of each legbone.




Sorry to have to be "That Guy" but I want you to be ready for the pain. The ORIF surgery is hands down the singlehandedly most painful experiences of my life and totally screwed my 1-10 pain scale. Things that used to be a 6 or 7 are now about a 2. Once the block wears off it's going to be colors of pain. No shit. It will go away, but screaming titties it hurt so fucking bad there was no happy place to retreat to, it dragged you right back out and kicked you in the nuts. I fervently hope that Opoids work for you. For me they were totally ineffective. For most people a single vicodin pill puts them in heaven. I was prescribed percocet and when I complained that it still fucking hurt, they told me to take two at a time. Result: Still hurt but now I couldn't shit. Tylenol did a better job to relieve the pain.
my doc was friends with my wife, he gave me Demerol pills. I took two in the morning at 0900 when my wife left for work, an hour later it was 1700 and she was home. Zero pain.


When I had swelling after my surgery, my doc had me soak my ankle in a bucket of ice water twice daily. He also had me freeze a styrofoam cup of water, then pick away the styrofoam and rub it back and forth around my ankle 20 mins twice a day. Kept swelling down. That might help you but check with a physician first.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 2:09:24 PM EST
The alternating cold/warm water method above sounds interesting.

I just do an ice water bath and do it for about 10-12 minutes whenever I have severely rolled my ankles.

Works much better than ice packs, ime.
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 2:15:11 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Benefactor:
Why are you avoiding Ibuprofen?   That should help to reduce inflammation.
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Surgery next week is a good reason
Link Posted: 8/20/2017 4:22:31 PM EST
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Originally Posted By McGuy:


...Doctor said without surgery I had a high likelihood of future problems including pain while walking, arthritis and being able to predict changes in the weather. ....
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Not to speak over your doctor, but you're very likely to have those issues anyway. One of my screws is on the outside at the end of the big bone, and sticks out. When I wear muck/snake boots, it feels like that screw is wearing through my skin from the inside.

But don't worry, I'm sure you'll be fine. I'm 48 and mountain bike 3 or 4 times a week. Do what you're supposed to do and always know that you have a good story and some scar tattoos.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 1:42:32 PM EST
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Originally Posted By DDalton:


Not to speak over your doctor, but you're very likely to have those issues anyway. One of my screws is on the outside at the end of the big bone, and sticks out. When I wear muck/snake boots, it feels like that screw is wearing through my skin from the inside.

But don't worry, I'm sure you'll be fine. I'm 48 and mountain bike 3 or 4 times a week. Do what you're supposed to do and always know that you have a good story and some scar tattoos.
View Quote
When you hit your leg on those screws it is a special kind of excruciating.

Kinda reminds me of sticking my hand on a razor blade and having someone whack it with a hammer.

I had a young guy toss a sandbag that had sat in the sun to me while deployed and of fucking course, it hit my leg right where those screws are. Hurt so bad it was like I couldn't breathe.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 1:52:43 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/21/2017 1:55:22 PM EST by Swampgrass]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By DDalton:


Not to speak over your doctor, but you're very likely to have those issues anyway. One of my screws is on the outside at the end of the big bone, and sticks out. When I wear muck/snake boots, it feels like that screw is wearing through my skin from the inside.

But don't worry, I'm sure you'll be fine. I'm 48 and mountain bike 3 or 4 times a week. Do what you're supposed to do and always know that you have a good story and some scar tattoos.
View Quote


I busted mine to pieces in the 90s, had the hardware removed 10 years later. A chunk of wire that was sharp from when it was snipped always felt like it was stabbing me from the inside out.

Edit- yea if anything whacks you on a spot that you have implants its a new type of pain.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 2:00:00 PM EST
Broke my fibula June 17th and still not back at work.
It was 10 days before I had surgery. The swelling had to go down. I hated those 10 days... all I wanted was surgery so I could get healed up and back to work. It's not gonna be easy. The couch and/or recliner will be your best friend. I ended up with a plate, 7 screws and a wire running trough my tibia to hold my fib in place.
My foot still swells up if I am vertical too long. Just keep it elevated, and iced as much as possible. Buy an ice bag, they are great. It's a blue cloth bag with a screw top.
PM me if you want to talk. It's been a long road to recovery, but nothing like my wife went through when she had cancer.
Keep your chin up and your TV remote close.
Danomite45
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 2:08:15 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By inzane123:
Cut down sodium intake as much as possible and drink tons of water.
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Yeah fucking up cardiac function is always a good idea prior to surgery.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 2:11:06 PM EST
Ice and elevation is about it for swelling. Most people do not elevate high enough. If you are putting ace bandages on still watch that it is not too tight, it will not reduce swelling and only serve to restrict blood flow. If the swelling is too much or you have fracture blisters near the operative site the surgeon may want to wait till this resolves, which is fine. If you elect to have an ORIF or open reduction internal fixation it is very straightforward for a fibula fracture. Most likely a 1/3 tubular plate and screws like the picture posted above.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 11:02:35 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By McGuy:



Shudder.

Mine isn't a tiny fraction of what yours was. My break is right where the second from the bottom screw is on your fibula.

Now I'm nervous. My x-ray shows an open v-notch maybe 3/16 inch wide at the open end on the outside of the break. The other side of the bone is about 1/8 inch from being aligned. (approximate numbers-just from eyeballing the x-ray)

Doctor said without surgery I had a high likelihood of future problems including pain while walking, arthritis and being able to predict changes in the weather.


At the ER they gave me morphine. I took half of one and got pain in the solar plexus that almost had me calling 911, plus it was four days before I took a decent crap again. Oddly, Oxywhatevers work fine for me.
View Quote
So how did you injure yourself anyway?

From the sounds of it you have an avulsion break of the distal fibulae point. Basically you rolled it hardcore, probably falling onto it and rolling at the same time. The tendon there held on nice and tight, which is a good thing. Better to break the bone than tear a tendon, believe that.
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