The Internet is Fucking Useless

I am now a hair over three weeks post injury. Time is moving like molasses flowing on the Arctic tundra. My foot is still swollen, Sometimes it hurts.  My foot hurts when my boot is done up snug, and I lay down. If I move around it's fine, but as soon a I get my feet up, I have to loosen the boot or I'll get a burning sensation in my swollen injured foot. When is the swelling going to go away? My foot looks like shit still. My partner says it stinks too. She helps me get the boot off for showers. 

There is no information on the internet that is useful. No guide to what my foot is supposed to be like through this process. Is it supposed to stink? How long is the swelling going to last? Why do my toes burn? Very few personal accounts I can find, and even less of personal accounts from people who know what the hell is going on.

I have an office job, so I've been going to work. I've shortened my work hours, so I can get home to put the leg up, although it does not seem to help immensely. Helps a little with the pain, but the swelling does not go away. My arm pits hurt from the crutches. My back hurts when I sit. I can't put my leg up when sitting due to my back.

I started physio for my back, and while I'm there they decided to do low-level laser therapy on the broken bones to enhance healing. I'm not yet convinced it's going to do anything. It seems a bit experimental. Luckily it's not invasive so it does not matter. Why not try it? Some studies on rats and rabbits show some success with it at certain stages of healing. Some studies show it's BS too. Anyhow, this leg is nothing but trouble so far, and soon my partner goes away on a business trip for a while leaving me to fend for myself. I'll survive.

Two Weeks Post Surgery

Had my two week checkup on Monday at the hospital. They removed my cast, then the stitches and cleans the foot a bit. I got a look at new x-rays that were taken on this day that show the hardware in my leg. I noticed that there were screws in my ankle and no hardware in my fibula shaft, which was clearly still broken. Only now did I fully understand what they did to my leg in surgery. I've been left out of the loop for the entire process so far and had though there was hardware in my fibula shaft too, but apparently not. The doctor came in and told me what the screws were for and why the fibula shaft did not need surgery. The break is separated and not aligned btw. I'm not a doctor so I'll take his word for it at this point, but I wouldn't mind a second opinion.

I left the hospital with a fancy boot this time. I can adjust it as I wish, pump air into it, release air, take it off to clean my foot and so forth. I also was lent an iWalk thing that replaces crutches. It supports the knee and offers a different way to get around but I can't seem to use it with this boot as the air pump thing takes up too much room. I seem to be efficient on the crutches. I can shower easily by sitting on a stool in the shower, and the pain is pretty much gone these days. I'm going to try to return to work this week.

Still Broken

I'm about 14 days in with this broken leg, and 12 days post surgery. Most of the pain has gone, and the drugs have been left in their container for several days now. The cast (number 3) feels heavy on my leg, but also loose. I think the swelling has gone down and perhaps the healing has begun. The bruise from my IV is gone, so I'll take that as a sign that bruising from surgery is also gone and the leg can now get on with repair. It still feels better to keep my leg elevated, but I can move around a bit more now without the pain of having my leg down.

The Internet is useless for legit info on having a broken leg. Questions like how long should the leg be elevated for? When can I move around? When is the pain going to stop? How long does the swelling last? When do I get my life back! The internet does not answer these. I found very few personal accounts from knowledgeable people. Mostly medical websites giving a timeline of healing, but with huge gaps. Useless.

Today I have my post-surgery appointment. I'll have x-rays done again today, the cast removed, leg inspected, and hopefully a boot or lighter cast installed. Stitches may be removed today too. It's a big day in the journey of Broken Leg. I hope to find more answers to some of my questions. I'd really like a lighter cast and to start going back to work. I work in an office, so I should be able to work sooner than later. As long as I can sit up without swelling returning.

Surgery

late morning on the second day after my incident, I got the call from the hospital to return for surgery. I went in for prep. I was nervous  as I don't really know what is going to happen. I'm not even clear of my exact injuries. The Orthopaedic Department is very quiet. technically closed, and only available for emergency surgery. Change into hospital clothing, answer questions from the nurse, and anesthesiologist. Lots of waiting in an area of the hospital that seems deserted. Only six of eighteen operating rooms are active today. I eventually get taken into the operating room with big scary lights above, a large view of my leg in an x-ray I had not seen before showing how much worse the break was than I realized. IV, gas, and I wake up some time later on drugs.

I wake up in a very large post recovery room with three other patients who soon leave, leaving me and some nurses as the only inhabitants of the large room. More drugs, water, drugs, water. An hour or so later I get into a wheel chair and immediately get sick. I feel drunk, weak, and nauseous, but I get to go home to eat and sleep. The next day I'm in pain, but not sick. Strength had returned.

A day later I feel some chafing in my cast and I head into the hospital for adjustments. I talk to a surgeon  as he removes the cast to examine. I finally find out what they did to me. I have a screw and wire installed into the bottom of my tibia and plates, are screwed into my fibula. Three main incisions in my leg are various places as far as I can see. Lots of stitches everywhere. New cast is installed and I head home for rest and healing.

Life on crutches: I feel very lucky I can bend my knee, as that helps immensely with mobility doing tasks such as using the toilet.

Life With Crutches

I'm on day two with crutches. I can't carry anything. I put on my pants only to carry around my cell phone in a pocket. I live up five flights of stairs. The banister is flimsy on one side, thin metal with nothing to hold onto on the other. At work my office is up one long flight of stairs. The microwave and fridge are down another long flight of stairs. I can no longer walk, bike or drive to work. I have not gone to work yet, but I hope to a few days after surgery. It's a relaxed office job so why not? I got up the stairs to my apartment around midnight when I got home from the hospital and I have not been down them since. I can easily get into chairs, on and off the bed, and so forth. The toilet is annoying, but possible. The shower has been a real challenge. I have used it once, by filling the tub a bit, then I kneel in front of the tub giving myself a sponge bath in the areas that matter and leaning forward to do my hair. I need a better tub solution, and YouTube has shown me some. Just need a chair in there I think, along with a way to keep my leg outside the tub as it's a no water zone. The boot tray has been moved, and the bath matt had to go completely. Don't want to slip on those with the crutc... Hospital called. Time for surgery. Bye.

2017 Has not Been a Good Year

The year began by driving a tractor trailer again. It had been a couple years since I've had to do this, since I was working in film before hand, but our great Premier of Nova Scotia, Stephen McNeil, single handily shut the industry down. Driving jobs involve long hours up to 16 hours a day driving, and making deliveries and so forth. The job is not terrible but I started to get pain in my leg while driving. By June it was unbearable and put me off work for several weeks as I tried to heal and do physio. My back, posture, height, core was the result. Meanwhile I was doing all this with braces in my mouth because I have a baby tooth the needs to be replaced. Then I went on a mountain biking trip that I had paid for many months earlier all all that compounded to screw me financially. I got a new job near home at a local bicycle shop that had reasonable hours, time for physio, walking, some biking, normalcy. 

Then, on boxing day I was carrying bags to the car when I slipped and fell. It didn't feel like the usual sprain or ankle twist. Something felt different, and I could not get up. A long wait at the local emergency room determined my fibula was broken in two places and they put a cast on and sent me to a more major hospital for surgery. After waiting for many hours there, I was told not to eat after midnight, and I'll be called to the hospital tomorrow or the next day for surgery. Luckily my family was there to help in all of this. From there we went to a drug store, got crutches and I went home to starve as it was near midnight. I did get a snack. The next day I am starving while waiting for a phone call. No calls yet. Around 3 PM I start calling all the hospital numbers to try to get hold of somebody who knows something. This was futile. I kept getting to the broken bone dept which was closed until a later date. I left a message somewhere else. The emergency room new nothing. It's about 3:30 PM and I'm starving so I eat food. Then at 4 somebody calls me to tell me I can eat until midnight, and we'll call you tomorrow. So now, it's tomorrow, and I'm starving again. Waiting for a call to go to surgery. Fun times.

Spring Vacation to St John's, NL

What a weekend! I won't go into much detail, but I had a gift certificate for Premier Executive Suites and I thought that'd use it in St John's. it's a city I've always wanted to visit in more detail. I had only been there once before and only for a few hours. We did the usual tourist things. We went to The Rooms to explore the museums, and art galleries and have some lunch with a great view of the city. We hiked up Signal Hill, visited Cape Spear and got drunk on George Street. One of the highlights was a tour by O'Briens Boat Tours in Bay Bulls, NL of the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve in the area. We saw one Minke Whale in the bay before heading out to check out a grounded iceberg. After that we headed out to the islands where thousands of birds nest. We saw Puffins, Common Murres, Razor Bills and gulls. It was an amazing experience. The other highlight of the trip was Berry Head. After an 8km hike on the East Coat Trail we saw the amazing land bridge. That's to St John's for the great hospitality! 

The Internet is Fucking Useless

No help for broken limb healing and dealing on the internet.

Two Weeks Post Surgery

Still broken, but I have a boot

Still Broken

Still broken and the internet sucks for legit and useful information.

Surgery

Although delayed, I got the surgery.

Life With Crutches

Crutches are shitty, but necessary.

2017 Has not Been a Good Year

The year of many medical problems. Teeth problems, back problems, leg problems caused by back problems, problems I won't discuss here, then more leg problems unrelated to other problems.

Spring Vacation to St John's, NL

First Race of the Season in Nova Scotia

Wallace River Paddle

Paddled with the parents

Finally got out to paddle with my parents.

The New trails at Long Lake Provincial Park in Halifax

Summary: they suck.

Bicycle Saddles

Saddles are difficult to choose and buy

First Face Climbing

A rock climbing trip to Musquodoboit Harbour with friends.

Tangier River and Sixth Lake

A whole lot of buchwhacking and not so much paddling