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Need advice on surgery 4 a broken ankle

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  • Need advice on surgery 4 a broken ankle

    Im new here & I've had my spinal injury for about 11 years now. I had broken my ankle a year or 2 ago & long story short, it never completely healed & what did heal became deformed. Now I'm facing surgery on it, open reduction internal fixation of tibal fracture nonunion with an implant called hindfoot fusion nail. I was told all the worse case senarios some being, infection, not healing or working & amputation which all these keep going thru my head. So I was wondering if any1 has gone thru before or had advice cuz I'm scared out my mind. Btw I have Kaiser & my otheropedic surgeon has only done 1 of these surgeries in his residency 3 years ago, I'm looking for a second opinion, but it seems like drs dont know much about paraplegia circumstances.

  • #2
    I would get a second opinion. I had ORIFs on my left femur and right tib/fib 20 months ago, and they are both healed but the entire thing was problematic and super-uncomfortable. Is it possible for you to call local SCI rehabs and find out who they use for non-spinal orthopedic consults? That might give you a lead on a more knowledgeable doctor.

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    • #3
      why are you having surgery on it is it causing issues with pain or spasms? issues with pressure sores? etc. do you stand? i had my ankle reconstructed 2 times because the first 1 as i walk with bracing on occasion gave out 2 yrs into it. so they had to do it again. if you are just having it done because it is deformed then i think you need to rethink it. as you know we have issues healing anything below our injuries i agree get a second opinion however if your just having it done because of a deformity then i would say to not have it done.
      T6 Incomplete due to a Spinal cord infarction July 2009

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      • #4
        You may find this story interesting.

        https://www.wmur.com/article/elite-s...-pain/20902884

        Sometimes amputation can be the best option.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Smashms View Post
          why are you having surgery on it is it causing issues with pain or spasms? issues with pressure sores? etc. do you stand? i had my ankle reconstructed 2 times because the first 1 as i walk with bracing on occasion gave out 2 yrs into it. so they had to do it again. if you are just having it done because it is deformed then i think you need to rethink it. as you know we have issues healing anything below our injuries i agree get a second opinion however if your just having it done because of a deformity then i would say to not have it done.

          My dad was the one who noticed it while we were transferring 2 a beach chair on an outing & was concerned if I didnt get fixed I would damage it more or bone would eventually end up poking out. I dont walk or stand, except in a stander occassionally, but my ankle flops over while in chair or transfering & basically has no support whatsoever. I am trying 2 find a second opinion (honestly I would like it out of Kaiser, but finding where 2 start is the difficult part. I did like annev308s idea about starting with rehabs)

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          • #6
            Does kaiser offer second opinions?

            pbr
            The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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            • #7
              if it has no support then it could cause a pressure sore eventually definately try to find a to find a surgeon with SCI experience.
              T6 Incomplete due to a Spinal cord infarction July 2009

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              • #8
                I have already talked 2 my rehab dr at Kaiser, he didnt even know of an orthopedic surgeon who's familiar with paras but supposed 2 be finding out 4 me, as of right now I dont have any clue if I'll get a second opinion, but I did talk 2 the dr & have an appointment set up with podiatrist & orthotist next week 2 c if having a brace will work until I can find a 2nd opinion

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                • #9
                  Wait, I don’t understand. They just said, “oh go on home with your unstable floppy broken ankle while we try to find you a second opinion and no bracing or support for you” ? Surely I have somehow misunderstood?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by annev308 View Post
                    Wait, I don?t understand. They just said, ?oh go on home with your unstable floppy broken ankle while we try to find you a second opinion and no bracing or support for you? ? Surely I have somehow misunderstood?
                    I'm not sure if I said it so it sounded like that, but after seeing my orthopedic surgeon a few weeks ago, he was all ready 2 go ahead & operate, even had a date tenatively scheduled 4 me. But AFTER I hurd all his information & went home 2 fill my dad in. My parents & I were in agreement that having a 2nd opinion would b beneficial. This initial injury had been over 1 1/2 years ago but I noticed more of the "flopiness" over past few month, I'm not sure if I had damaged it more (I'm in an adaptive pe class & use a flexicier- bike that peddles 4 u) or if it never truly healed, but my Dr. had emailed me reminding me he had date still open but not 4 long (his next appt not being til June or later) & at that time I had mentioned I felt like waiting (didnt mention my 2nd opinion). But if having a brace would help with stabilizing ankle in meantime. Did I clarify or make more confusing? So I saw the podiatrist & orthoist on Friday, got a cast 4 a brace & now have a splint since brace is gonna take few weeks but already had problems with splint leaving marks & blisters, so went back this am & got a different type.

                    I saw u had gone thru the procedure they r proposing 4 me & I was curious 2 know if ur a para also? Wouldnt mind hearing ur experiences from this either so hope we can talk!!
                    Last edited by Redslady84; 03-25-2019, 10:54 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Yes, I’m a para. My surgeon and my PM&R doc (who luckily is really responsive to email) said it was important to do it pretty quickly, to increase the chances of the bone healing. The surgeon was not optimistic about the bones healing because although I use a standing frame and e-stim and stuff he just - wasn’t hopeful, but said that the surgery should be done for stability at the very least, and in the long run to prevent deformation and potential pressure sores as well as maintaining independent transfers. The bones have healed just fine and I have gotten an estim bike (yay Myolyn!) and my surgeon has been really impressed and openly said he was wrong and apologized for being negative and dismissive which increased my respect for him. The big problem for me has been that I have a lot of scar tissue around the screws in my femur and it can be really painful if the bone is angled in a way that stresses that scar tissue. The surgery itself was not a big deal (at least for me!) and the recovery wasn’t either - I was itchy around the staples and it took me a couple of days to reorganize how I hurl myself around so I didn’t stress the breaks but I got a friend to stay with me and watch me and yell at me, which was so helpful. Also as soon as the surgery was done my spasticity dropped back to normal levels. Let me know if you have any other questions. Best wishes.

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