The Boot Gets The Boot

After six weeks, my fractured fibula has healed. This afternoon, I visited the orthopedist to get permission to stop wearing my boot.

Permission granted.

Helaine wanted to know if my leg was x-rayed? Nope. The doctor had me roll up my pant leg and began to squeeze!

Does this hurt? How about this? I pushed my foot hard against her hand. Then, she asked me to resist as she pulled it. I am totally pain free.

I brought my left shoe with me. I’m wearing it for the first time in a month and a half!

Where to go from here? This was brought on by my desire to run and get in shape. Running is out, at least for now. Beginning tomorrow I’ll be bike riding.

My doctor said to take it easy. Start with ten minutes. Work my way up from there. Stop if I feel pain. Can do.

I need to get in shape. I want to get in shape. The former is worthless without the latter.

Doctor, Doctor, Give Me The News

I’ve been wearing the boot for my fractured fibula since June 11. I went back to the orthopedist this morning to see how things are going.

My impressions first, then hers.

There’s a whole lot less pain overall and no pain at all when I’m in the boot. I walked all over Midtown Manhattan last Saturday with no problems… until I got home. Even then it was just a little sore, and that passed.

Tuesday at work, as I was walking onto our elevated anchor desk when I caught my foot on something and felt a twinge. Since then, without the boot there is some minor sensitivity, especially if I turn the leg to an uncomfortable position.

Today’s appointment was for 11:30 AM and they took me right on time. A technician took me to the x-ray table&#185, snapping off three shots. They’re still old school at this office with actual film negatives that get chemically processed.

My doctor took a look and was pleased with my results. She pointed to an area which was a darker shade of gray than the surrounding bone. It was where the healing is taking place.

My first x-ray (before I visited her) showed nothing. My next x-ray showed a small off-shade area. This time, the area has grown.

“So, the worse it looks, the better it is,” I asked? Bingo!

She said I was healing quickly, something I was pleased to hear. As you get older… ugh, must I say this… As you got older, nothing works as well as it did when you were young. That includes your recuperative powers.

She said I have no restrictions on walking, as long as the boot is on. That’s good, because my folks are coming in in a few weeks and I need to keep up! We have lots of plans, much of which includes walking.

This stress fracture happened as I was running, trying to get into shape. I’m not anxious to repeat that, but I still want to work on getting fit. Once I’m boot free, I plan on lots of bike riding.

Finally, I don’t know who it was who invented my Velcro encrusted boot, but I am grateful. My leg would be in a cast without this technology. I can remove the boot to shower and sleep. That makes the whole adventure much more palatable.

It’s still a pain, but I haven’t let it change my life.

I will wear the boot another three weeks, until all pain is gone.

&#185 – I still find it comical they throw a washcloth sized lead shield over my mid-section as the x-rays fire through my leg.

Survey Says: Fracture

Don’t send flowers.

I visited the orthopedist this morning, over at Orthopedia Factory Outlet. Following the current trend in medicine, this place is volume, volume, volume. The practice has over a dozen doctors!

That being said, I can’t complain about my treatment. A nice woman took my medical info (three pages, including one question that asked my hobbies – I didn’t answer that one) and co-pay. Co-pay first, medicine second.

Another nice woman (showing her pregnancy enough that I asked when she was due with no fear of being wrong) took me to a small examining room in the back. I was asked to don a pair of paper shorts! Really? I’d never seen these before.

Note to doctors: Better magazines, please.

The orthopod, a pleasant, young, tall, attractive woman, examined my leg and ordered up X-rays. Truth is, after she squeezed the leg and asked the right questions, we both knew it was a fracture. The X-rays only confirmed the obvious.

So, I’m in a boot. Friends had mentioned the probability of a boot earlier and I visualized what it was. Wrong!

Held together with Velcro straps, the boot covers my leg from the toes all the way up to my knee. For the next six weeks I’ll be wearing it (and will also be incapable of sneaking up on anyone) except while in bed or the shower. It is much better (from my standpoint) than a cast.

For the next six weeks I will mercilessly wear out my right shoe while leaving the left in the closet.

At least I’m on my way to healing and, of course, that’s the part that’s most important.

My Leg

I’ve been going to physical therapy, trying to get my leg to feel better. X-rays were negative. The assumption was, inflamed tendons.

OK – that’s not medically correct nomenclature, but it’s the best I can do. And it generally describes the prevailing wisdom about my leg… until this afternoon.

The physical therapist was perplexed. My leg was not responding to treatment. Even worse, as he’d press and poke, trying to make it hurt&#185, the pain was inconsistent. It flared in different places at different times.

Sometimes hitting the same spot twice would cause me to wince followed by no pain at all.

Two points he found that brought pain were associated with two separate tendons. It’s unlikely they’re both injured. It’s got to be something else.

The prevailing wisdom has changed. Maybe it’s not tendon related. Maybe it’s a hairline fracture that didn’t show up on the X-ray. I’m now told that’s common.

I’m seeing an orthopedist on Monday. Until then, the only two things I can do for my leg are wrap it in ice and complain.

I’m really good at complaining.

&#185 – Now there’s a job!