Painful Tendon after severe ankle fracture

by Jenny
(Hong Kong)


I fell 5 metres whist bouldering (rock climbing without rope) and broke my tib, fib, talus, plus complete dislocation of ankle joint, it was an open wound compound fracture. Long story short, it took many surgeries to get all the bones re-aligned properly and the ankle joint put back in properly. Am now in my 9th month of recovery, still on single crutch, and doing physio everyday.


I'm getting acute pain around the area where the posterior tibialis tendon is, from base of the medial side of my foot and up the inside of my leg, basically that's restricting my ability to achieve dorsiflexion, of course the joint hurts too when walking or doing physio, but I think the pain in and around the tendon is rather abnormal.

It could be that the nails put in the medial malleolous is close to the tendon but its very hard to tell. Is it normal to experience pain around the tendon during the recovery process?

Please help!

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Jun 13, 2016
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Debi- In response to your comment ANKLE PILON FRACTURE NEW
by: Nicole: tekee3137@aol.com

Hi Debi- I read your comment with great interest (although others comments were also very close to home).... I was in a head on collision with a texting driver (states this in my police report, as she admitted it). Speed limit was 60, so it was a combined total of 120mph. I was knocked out, cut out of car and air-lifted. This happened on June 16, 2015 and I am approaching the 1 yr. anniversary. I had a pilon fracture of the right ankle- broken tibia that came out of the skin, broken fibula and 10 breaks to the ankle with a cracked medial malleolus. I have had 4 surgeries (last one was a bone graft taken from hip because the tibia would not heal even with a bone stimulator- Dr. said it was just pulverized)....... So now I am the proud owner of 3 plates and 15 screws. I did not walk for 10.5 months. Have now been "walking" for 6 weeks! More like limping actually. My question is this: WILL THE INTERNAL SCAR TISSUE EVER GO AWAY/GET MORE LAX so I can walk normally without over compensation of my knee (new pain)? I do therapy 3X/week and am only at 10 degrees past neutral on dorsiflexsion. My good ankle is 21 degrees dorsiflexsion. I cannot run nor walk down stairs with my broken ankle in the upper step position. I have a lot of problems/weakness walking on the beach if my ankle is expected to function in the eversion position as well- inversion is ok but not like my good ankle. My plantarflexsion is also acceptable, but again not like it used to be as I was a yoga junkie and quite flexible in my ankles.... :( Anyone have any advise on internal scar adhesions and how to make them 'release' their deathgrip????? PLEASE!!! Anyone? My email is: TEKEE3137@AOL.COM

Mar 21, 2015
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severe ankle fracture also NEW
by: Anonymous

I was run over by an accelerating Jeep 9 months ago and though I did not have as many broken bones as the man in the above photo but, I did have a deep open wound,(tendons and bones exposed)and a broken ankle in which they rushed me into the O.R.cut the hanging flesh to put 2 screws in to hold it together. I was then sent to a hospital in Boston to do plastic surgery to repair the hole but 1st had to do a clean out of the jagged flesh and the next day they moved me to a private room and told me I had M.R.S.A.I am still in so much pain (even with ice every couple hrs.) I went to my P.C. Dr. and prescribed 5mg. percs which barely do anything. I saw a pain clinic Dr. and he says "see your P.C. Dr." that it was still acute pain. Can it still be acute pain after 9 months? I feel like if they can't bill me my pain does not matter.

Sep 14, 2014
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My Dislocated Knee NEW
by: Chad

When I was 7th grade I was in the shower with a white T-shirt on (don't ask me why I had a white T-shirt on), so after my shower that I took after I turned around I all of a sudden slid and fell on the wet floor with a dislocated knee (yes I had dislocated knee and was on the floor in pain) well my mom told was I okay and I said I was alright but when my mom opened the door she said "Don't Move" and she told my bra Liam to go and get the phone so she called 911 which was to the EMTs and they came out and brought this stretcher out and had to put me on it and put me on the stretcher and carried me out in an ambulance, right b4 I was taken by ambulance one the EMTs said his name was Mark like the street I was living at the time and he said which hospital would I like to go and I said Willis Knighton Bossier. Not Willis Knighton Pierremont cuz it would be way to far.... To be continued!!!!!! :). Good Night!!!!!

Jan 06, 2014
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ankle torture NEW
by: janette

I understand every word youve written. 10 years ago I fell forwards off a small step, but my foot was trapped and I dislocated and broke 4 bones around the ankle Ive 5 metal pins inside which couldnt be removed. 6 months in a cast and 3 months after in an ankle brace. My surgeon advised me to wear orthopedic boots, which I have done and after all this time they have helped me to stabilize my foot. I would suggest you ask for an appointment at your hospital in the orthopedic dept and try a more supportive type of footwear. I take Ibuprofen when I have to work or go out.I try not to take 2 or more a day have done since the accident happened. I hope this helps you.

Jan 06, 2013
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still swollen and in pain NEW
by: Debi

It's been nearly 2 years since my head on collision my ankl was shattered pilon fracture broke my leg in three places had 4 surgeries I still limp I'm so swollen and in pain I can't wear my regular shoes still I use a cane most days and have been disabled since the accident I can't squat down or even climb the stairs like most people I have metal rods and screws in it. Some days I swell and have more pain depends on the weather and if I have been on it more than 30 min. Can't stand or sit to long its so unfair that I will never be the same and the young man who fell asleep suffered nothing. My life is forever changed I used to love to dance I can not anymore I can't bowl either I cant work when if ever will I be normal????

Oct 25, 2012
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Skin sensitivity NEW
by: Ned

I recently had a fracture dislocation of the ankle. I fractured the fibula and had a plate and screws. I'm 3 weeks out and the top of my foot is hyper sentive. Is this normal? Thanks for a reply.

Oct 25, 2012
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Skin sensitivity NEW
by: Ned

I recently had a fracture dislocation of the ankle. I fractured the fibula and had a plate and screws. I'm 3 weeks out and the top of my foot is hyper sentive. Is this normal? Thanks for a reply.

Sep 29, 2012
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I feel your pain. NEW
by: Anonymous

I too have experienced 2 ankle fractures. The first one took place 7 years ago. I stepped out my front door and slipped on ice. I was fortunate enough to not have surgery. I regained ROM well but the ankle was definitely stiff.

Here I am 7 years later recovering from another ankle fracture on the same ankle! I missed a step while walking from a sidewalk to a driveway. The recovery has been difficult. I am not gaining back full ROM. I have scar tissue. My tendons fire constantly from the way my body holds my foot.

The one thing I can tell you is to utilize your doctor. They should listen to you and your concerns. If the doctor you are currently seeing is not, then find a new, better one. I have hope that I will get my life back to normal one day.

I hope your life is back to normal by now as well.

Sep 29, 2012
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I feel your pain. NEW
by: Anonymous

I too have experienced 2 ankle fractures. The first one took place 7 years ago. I stepped out my front door and slipped on ice. I was fortunate enough to not have surgery. I regained ROM well but the ankle was definitely stiff.

Here I am 7 years later recovering from another ankle fracture on the same ankle! I missed a step while walking from a sidewalk to a driveway. The recovery has been difficult. I am not gaining back full ROM. I have scar tissue. My tendons fire constantly from the way my body holds my foot.

The one thing I can tell you is to utilize your doctor. They should listen to you and your concerns. If the doctor you are currently seeing is not, then find a new, better one. I have hope that I will get my life back to normal one day.

I hope your life is back to normal by now as well.

Jul 21, 2012
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SAME CASE NEW
by: Andrew

It was the last day of school, It was going great until we went into the gym. Me and my friend were walking down the bleachers then it happed I slipped and came down on my ankle. i was laying on the bleacher and looked down all i saw was bone and blood, my foot was dangling off to the side i screemed! When i got to the ER they had to set it so the gave meds that made me trip hard. Anyway after 53 hours in the hospitil im home with 2 pins in my ankle and a huge cast on my leg. Bottom line THIS IS THE WORST SUMMER EVER!!!

Jul 17, 2012
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Never give up... NEW
by: Tim

I felt compelled to write after reading the experiences of so many of you out there. Nearly 20 years ago (in my early twenties) I tore the base of my tibia and fibula off in a motorcycle accident. I also suffered multiple fractured bones in my foot and torsional damage to the soft tissues around my ankle. I had 2 lengthy operations, the last of which involved the use of metalwork (plates and screws) to piece it all back together, followed by 12 weeks in plaster. When I came out of plaster my lower leg was thinner than my arm and had no weight bearing capability and my ankle had no range of movement. It was very painful to put any weight on it or to move it (or more accurately, to have someone move it). I really didn't expect to be able to walk on it again and the doctors weren’t exactly supportive either. However, I’m not one to give up and I was lucky in that I had an excellent physiotherapist who supported me, especially on the really bad days and encouraged me to keep pushing a little bit further than before, even when it hurt (and, as you know, it can really hurt). I can’t remember the details of all the exercises she had me do but there were a lot of stretches and balance work, with little emphasis on outright strength; I suppose that came naturally with the increased range of movement and increase in use of my leg. It took me 12 months, a lot of hard work and pain, and no small amount of determination to be able to walk again without crutches and even to this day I do have a loss of range of movement and pain from time to time. However, I strongly believe that you get out what you put in and all that hard work has allowed me to make, in my opinion, a full recovery. I consider every day to be part of my rehab and have worked hard ever since then to stay active and enjoy the sports I used to (cycling, skiing, badminton, tennis, golf, etc); I can even run, to an extent, though I was never very fond of it (I have a congenital anaemia, just to add insult to injury and running was never one of my strong points!). Admittedly, after activities such as tennis and badminton my ankle gets rather sore and achey but it is worth it to maintain movement and strength and I just have to remember what might have been if I had given up.

Jun 26, 2012
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how i broke my arm!! NEW
by: Azilfinn Jones

when I was 11 I cartwheeled down a hill and compound fractured my left arm... I broke both bones! When I got to the hospital they didnt know what to do with my arm so i had to wait 5 hours. The surgan who was working on my arm said my surgury would only be about an hour but by the time i was done it had been 3 hours and i had a metle plate running up my one bone with 4 screws and i also had a metle rod running up my other! after that i spent 5 days in the hospital and 11 weeks in a tencer bandage. i couldnt have a cast cuz they thought i might get an infection.

Jun 26, 2012
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my arm NEW
by: Anonymous

when i was 11 i cartwheeled down a hill and compound fractured my left arm... i broke both bones! when i got to the hostpitle they didnt know what to do with my arm so i had to wait 5 hours. the surgan who was working on my arm said my surgury would only be about an hour but by the time i was done it had been 3 hours and i had a metle plate rinning up my arm with 4 screws and i also had a metle rod running up my arm! after that i spent 5 days in the hostpitle and 11 weeks in a tencer bandage. i couldnt have a cast cuz that thought i might get an ifection.

Aug 04, 2011
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Ankle Fusion in 2007, but still in pain!!
by: Anonymous

I had my ankle crushed in 2004 in an accident. I went through 7 surgeries and a lot of physical therapy but nothing was really taking the pain away. I could barely walk and I was in a lot of pain. My doctor had always told me that fusion would be the last resort. After a few years of pain, I decided to get the fusion done. The recovery was long and painful but within a year, I was doing so much better. It has been a few years now since the fusion and I am experiencing pain again!! My ankle feels pretty good, but now my knee and hip on my "good leg" is giving me a lot of trouble. I am worried that I am putting too much stress the other joints now since I can't move my ankle. Has anybody else experienced this?

Aug 04, 2011
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Ankle Fusion in 2007, but still in pain!!
by: Anonymous

I had my ankle crushed in 2004 in an accident. I went through 7 surgeries and a lot of physical therapy but nothing was really taking the pain away. I could barely walk and I was in a lot of pain. My doctor had always told me that fusion would be the last resort. After a few years of pain, I decided to get the fusion done. The recovery was long and painful but within a year, I was doing so much better. It has been a few years now since the fusion and I am experiencing pain again!! My ankle feels pretty good, but now my knee and hip on my "good leg" is giving me a lot of trouble. I am worried that I am putting too much stress the other joints now since I can't move my ankle. Has anybody else experienced this?

Jun 01, 2011
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18 months post fusion op
by: Anonymous

Good news is I am just about back to nomality after having my left ankle fused - bad news is I am still not pain free. Thankfully I no longer require crutches or any kind of walking aid ... I am back at the gym and can do low impact exercise. Walking is fine, although if I do walk for any length of time I do get quite a bit of pain and swelling. My doc has diagnosed CRPS in my left ankle, which is being treated with Guinethadine blocks (injections in day surgery) which do help a great deal (for a short period). Obviously I have had to adapt myu lifestyle to suit my ankles needs - however this isn't so bad - I can still cycle, walk, exercise and most of the time the pain is bareable - strangely I have spoken to people who have the same op and they are completely pain free - it might just be my bad luck but I honestly feel SO LUCKY to be rid of the crutches and also no more talk of any ops (after 7-8 ops over the last few years and the horrendous recovery times I can deal with what I am left with now) - I should also addd that I am using oral meds very scarcely - I hate the side effects from these and feel the injections control it most of the time, only when I have to give in do I take oral meds.

May 31, 2011
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7 months postop
by: Anonymous

I suffered a tri-malleolar fracture and dislocation 7 months ago. Everything was progressing fairly well until 3 months postop when the pain and swelling started. My ortho doc kept blowing me off, I kept doing my therapy. ROM came back pretty quickly however everytime they added the strength exercises I could barely walk out of there. Finally 5 months postop I had an MRI and CT, both detailing multiple unhealed fractures of the tibia, a new avulsion fracture, avascular necrosis of the tibia, widening of the ankle joint, and the fibula fracture that was plated with screws was not healing. My dear ortho doc said he wouldn't change anything and told me I should continue therapy even though I could barely walk. Agreed to send me to a "specialist" who put me back on crutches for 6 weeks and said he thought I just had stress fractures and that the crutches would fix it all. I have read enough online that I do not believe that 6 weeks in a cast is going to fix all that is wrong with the ankle. I just want it fixed but can't find anyone to do it. I don't know what needs to be done but I know I want my life back. I am a nurse and was a runner,every aspect of my life continues to be impacted by this. It is comforting to know that others have been here and eventually got some sense of normal back, I am trying to keep the faith. :) Good luck to everyone!

Jan 30, 2011
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tri malleolar ankle fracture troubles
by: Susie

I suffered a tri malleolar ankle fracture seven weeks ago. I am out of plaster and using a plastic removable cast on top of a tubi-grip stretch sock. I have good up and down motion of the foot but both sides are very tight and extremely painful to flex. I am told that this is because of weakened tendons and ligaments. I can rotate my ankle and raise the foot almost vertical but the walking exercises are killing me. I have to stand using a chair as support and sway from left to right and also try to bend my knee with my injured leg in front of me and my foot flat on the floor- both are proving very tough. I thought I was progressing well with the static flexing of the foot but walking feels like a whole different ball game. I'm also finding elevation very painful - feels like tendonitis. Any advice? Susie, London

Jan 13, 2011
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Pain 10 years after ORIF
by: CB

I broke both tib & fib on ice about 10 years ago. My first op which involved pinning and plating left me on crutches for 6 weeks when they decided that the tibia wasn't healing and proceded with a bone graft taken from my hip. I was non weight bearing for 5 months all told then a year later I had the plate removed. The good news is that in 2009 i trekked to base camp Everest - the bad news is that now that I have bought a shop and am standing for 7-10 hours a day I struggle with the short walk home. I have found that a hot bath followed by the application of Arnica gel and a support bandage help - accompanied by elevating the ankle and resting! Not something that's easy to do with a new business!!! Has ANYONE got ANY suggestions for relieving the pain?

Dec 14, 2010
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broke both my ankles
by: billtral fractures

I broke both my ankles falling from about 3flights up. i was in a wheelchair for like 4 months. I have pins and a plates in both ankles. i thought i would never walk again. i did and 2 years later i still cant run and i used to be very active playing basketball, jogging. when i try to run it hurts.. i heard about getting them fused but i pray i will run again

Dec 01, 2010
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broken left tibia
by: Anonymous

My ladder fell with me on it and I landed on my left ankle from seven feet onto grass. Doc says I broke my tibia in the ankle region in eight places. He put me back together with ten screws and a couple of plates. It's now nearly four months since my surgery and I'm doing well with it. I have nearly full range of motion, walk with a limp, swelling, and by noon want to get off my feet but feel I will make further improvement. I'm about done with therapy now and I strongly feel you get out of therapy what you put into it. No pain no gain, in most cases. I feel for all those suffering with foot/ankle pain. This is my second time learning to walk. I had also broke my right ankle in 1994 climbing over a fence. I finally got that one repaired with arthroscopic surgery two years after the injury.
I wish you all well.

Nov 18, 2010
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ankle fusion
by: Anonymous

I had an ankle fusion in 2003. the recovery was awful but once recovered it was the best thing I did. Only problem is I cannot do any running or extensive aerobic activities because my joints all around my foot and ankle get so sore that I can't walk for a few days. Doc says swimming and bicycle are the only excursive I should do. Right now my Achilles tendon is killing me from waiting tables for 7 hours. The price I pay. So as long as you don't over do it you should be ok.

Nov 10, 2010
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Fusion has worked out for the best!!
by: AES

Since having my fusion done last Nov - Life has changed so much. I am back at the gym, fitness classes, walking (just about as well as I ever could ... only minor hick-up is learning to walk down stairs with any pace) and I feel as though I have got my life back - I am practically pain free and have just about weaned myself of any medication!! I never thought this day would arrive, but please consider the fusion before anything else too drastic, the op itself wasn't as painful as I first thought it would be - ok the recovery does seem quite a drag, but it is so worth the wait. I went on holiday this year for the first time in three years without having my crutches and boy did it feel great, and nobody could even tell there was anything wrong with me (unless they looked closely enough to see the scars ... very small price to pay)

Nov 06, 2010
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amputate
by: Anonymous

i compound fractured 2 years ago and its the size of a soft ball still it is so painful i think im gonna have it amputeded. fuseing it just sounds like its still gonna hurt it was a really bad fracture im suprised its still there

May 26, 2010
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Man I know that had to suck!
by: Betty Haynes

I feel for you. I think I am going to have to go the fusion route for my left ankle. If it means that I won't hurt as bad then I am all for it. I fell from a roof about 12 ft when a ladder kicked out from under me about 5 years ago. My leg got hung in a rung on the way down. When it was all said and done my foot was backwards and I had bones sticking out everywhere. I had shattered my shin bone as well. I now have enough metal in my leg to set off a metal detector 2 counties away. I can't walk good I have a permanent limp but I thank God that I escaped with my life. If I had landed another way I could have broken my neck. The fall was on concrete to.

I hope you are doing well now and you are getting around good and pain free.

May 05, 2010
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KNow the pain
by: Leah

I did this exact same thing - fell 30ft onto my feet and rocks and ended up with the same injuries as you, exepct to both ankles. I was in a wheelchair for 6 months, that was followed by teaching myself to walk again, then many more operations spanning over 3 years.

The only way you can hear is by being positive and DONT ever get a fusion done unless you have so much pain that you have to.

I can now run again and my Surgeon still cant believe it!!

Remember - with your rehab - no pain, no gain!

Mar 28, 2010
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when i was 12 ( a kid ) i compond fractured my elbow
by: Anonymous

when i was 12 years old i had a compound fracture on my elbow.The crazy thing was was that i had never broken a bone in my life till then and what do you know with my luck my first broken bone was a open wound breake "compound fracture" I had 3 pins and 1 screw in my elbow. This all was very scary for me i was only 12 years old. I fell out of a tree right before i was going to climb down from it. but i didnt climb i fell out of the tree. I am 19 years pld right now and since that day i have not climbed one tree at all and when other people climb trees around me i get so scared. i rember the pain and wakeing up in the middle of the night to the pain i would scream because of the pain! i have never delt with pain to good and i was only 12 years old:( my elbow still hurts at times like when the weather is changeing or if use it for to long at a time!
i still have all my scares and i love them i use to always hide them but now i know they are my battle wounds and i love them! so yahhhh climbing trees can be fun but also life changeing because it change my life very much im limted on things i can do with my left elbow but im makein it hahaha:)
ps. I love shareing my story and the details:)
even to this day haha:)
ohhh yah and when i got home from the hostpital i had to droup out of band:( I couldnt play my flute haha:)

Mar 23, 2010
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Feeling alone!!
by: Anonymous

I had my accident at the end of July 2009 and had a compound fracture of my ankle with multiple broken bones (I got a text saying that there was a rumour that my leg was hanging off - when I told a nurse who was giving me a bed bath that, she said "have you not seen the photos - it was".) The skin and flesh on my lower leg peeled off like a sock and I needed multiple debrydation, vaccum suction and skin grafts. I was told at first that I could lose my leg. I didn't, and the doctors are pleased that the bones have healed and that the skingrafts have taken well. The trouble is my leg was imobalised for seven months with external fixings for three months then a pot. I now am having physio every week and will start hydro therapy next week. I was getting upset thinking that it was my fault that there is very little improvement in movement and that I have periods of severe pain that make me feel low and like crying. After reading the comments on this site I no longer feel like a wimp and no longer feel as if I am the only one going through this. I am not please that you are all going through this, but am happy that I can relate to what you are going through and that I am not alone.

Mar 10, 2010
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Finaaly had akle fused ... after several ops
by: AES

I have finally had my ankle fused (had a bad ankle break in Jan 2008, and none of the ops I had worked to get me back on my feet without the use of crutches, my consultant tried everything to put it back to normal, but my ankle just froze and I had no range of movement anyway ... and he did always say the fusion was the last resort for me. But I now have to say I wish I had done it way before now - it has been a great success, I now finally feel as though I can get my life back, I am pain free, walking unaided (still with a slight limp which should go soon)and back exercising and just being normal again. I had my op in Nov 2009 and have felt so positive even during the recovery (which was quite lengthy) ... but I am now wearing normal shoes adain (without any aids/heel build ups etc.) it is wonderful. All I have to say is there is life after fusion .... although there are some some small draw backs (not being able to run, wear heels) however this is a small price to pay for being able to walk properly(pain free) again!!! Good Luck to you all who are still considering it (I did the same too), I don't regret going ahead with the fusion at all now.

Mar 09, 2010
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fusion?
by: Grant Jordan.

and to all the other comments, wow, well after my first posting about a year and a half ago, i underwent a second surgery to remove a screw that was backing out, it was scary because they thought it was infected, well, after extensive test ( bone scans, indium scans, and lab work), which all came out positive they removed the screw, and found no infection. which is weird. but i am still going through pain, especially after a hard days work, i walk with a limb, and the doctor told me 3 weeks ago that i might have to go through fusion. but we would exhaust all possibilities before that happens. he still does not offer any pain meds, and tells me to deal with it. in which i have found someone that would help me with the pain, my GP. THANK GOD ! ( percecet ) although, i am afraid of becoming "hooked" on the drug, it lets me live a "normal" life. i hope that all who post on here get "quality help" and continue to post. thank god for this site, it really helps alot. i will continue to post as my progression continues, and offer any help or knowledge that i can.

Mar 09, 2010
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shattered ankle
by: Holly

I shattered my anle in a car accident almost 25 years ago- I have very limited range of motion-Had ankle debried(got bad staff infection)-Every Dr. that looks at my MRI or x-ray says the same thing--get it fused-I WILL NOT GET IT FUSED-unless every option has been exhausted--Without going into a lot of details- A top neurosurgeon had his knee "fixed" by this company the name is reggenex in Colorado...please look at the website it may give you some different options

Dec 16, 2009
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2 years post op
by: Anonymous

i broke my ankle 2 years ago in a motorcyle accident and had a plate and screws put in. I was unable to bare any weight on it for 5 months, then did physical therapy but to this day i am unable to run or do any high impact excercise (well i can but then i can't barely walk for 3 days after ) and my ankle swells up and throbs at night when trying to sleep. i hope it gets better for you. i am debating on having the hardware removed to see if it will help get full range of motion back and maybe be less painful after working out, but not sure if it will help or not so If anyone else has had hardware removed and had it actually be worht having surgery again please let me know.

Nov 15, 2009
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ankle pain - comments
by: Anonymous

I just stumbled upon this site - I'm on my 9th month of recovering from a bad ankle break (and two bad surgeries)
There are times I am nearly out of my mind in pain. All I want to do is walk again without being in agony - (I used to climb mountains like a goat!)

Sep 22, 2009
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similar injury
by: Lacey

My husband's foot was nearly severed in a car accident in 1996, with a compound fracture to the talus and other small bones.

We were told that most surgeons would not have even attempted the repair and would have amputated the foot. A bone growth stimulator had excellent results and there was no bone death, and the foot healed. I don't remember the exact numbers, but he went through a series of plaster casts with each one bringing the foot a little closer to neutral.

He never did quite make it to 90 degrees and has a limited range of motion. There were pins, then pin removal, then a couple of years ago he opted for achilles tendon lengthening and bone spur removal in the hopes of gaining motion. It was very painful process and unsuccessful in increasing the range.

Most days, he's fine, but after a long hard day of work he can only walk with a cane and suffers with a lot of pain. He won't take any narcotics because of prior substance abuse issues and can't take any nsaids because of stomach problems, so the pain sometimes becomes a problem.

He's now considering the fusion surgery, which is why I got on here to read everybody's story. [Btw - Don't lose hope. Seek many opinions before any optional surgery. Surround yourself with positive people!] He participates in most of his previous activities, except running. He's active and enjoys life, but sometimes has down periods from the pain.

Sep 14, 2009
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21 months post op fracture tib & fib
by: AES

I have had the pain in my ankle since my fracture in Jan 2008 - the only thing to help were the pain killing injections (administerd in day surgery) it was a guanithedine block (not sure of the spelling) but it worked wonders for the pain, although I still have never regained any range of movement in my ankle - I am due to have it fused in 2 weeks - which they tell me will certainly help with the pain (I now have CRPS & accelerated arthritis in my ankle) - only downside is I wil have virtually no movement in the ankle - but I feel the pain being taken away outways the chances if me ever gaining any motion, or normality since my accident (and I will be able to walk fully weightbearing and unaided) - I have tried everything from physio to hydrothwerapy to regain the movement but it is completely frozen ..
I hope you can get some relief from the pain in your ankle soon, I would certainly speak to your consultant about the pain killing injections (although not everyone responds to the injections I am told) - Good luck Liz




Sep 12, 2009
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3 month post op fracture tibia fibula and ankle
by: Liz

I am inquiring about the pain I am enduring it is so severe I spend my time crying . Will i ever have full rangeof motion to my ankle again I ask my physician if there is an end to all this agony. What can I do to help myself regain strength and full use of my ankle please help.

Sep 03, 2009
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every case is different ... however
by: Anonymous

Sometimes the pain gets so bad that just 'living with it' doesn't seem like an option - I would advise you to speak to someone in a pain management clinic - I am sure there must be something they can do for you - especially after 9 months. My consultant has been really good in the sense he is prepared to try any means of getting movement/relieving pain back into my ankle. Although the fusion will leave me with barely no movement he has said it should alleviate/clear the chronic pain I have in my joint - I think when it is with you constantly you have to consider all options especially to relieve the pain. Fusion isn't the only answer (I was told this was the very last resort for my case)but I think having a better quality of life is crucial to recovering from such a bad fracture - really sorry to hear you have been told you must just live with it :(

Sep 03, 2009
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R.O.M
by: Grant

its been 9 months now after my accident, and i still do not have full range of motion, and i still suffer from pain and stiffness, i know its from scar tissue in the joint, but was advised not to go through another surgery to remove it, bassicly they (the rehab people and the doctors) said that its something that will always be with me, and i should get used to it. they offer no pain relief, other the over the counter advil, or tylenol. i guess i just have to live with it .

Sep 03, 2009
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Pain after ankle fracture
by: Anonymous

Wow great picture ...
I have had pain in my ankle since my accident - I have however had a few guinathidine blocks injected into my ankle (which worked really well, they say not everyone responds to it) - although the pain can be really sore when these wear off. I did have an achilles tendon lengthening op to try and allow me more dorsiflexion but this hasn't worked - but I do have a bit less 'tighteness' around the back of my ankle now.
I do know how frustrating being on crutches can be - I have now been on elbow crutches for 21 months - I am due to have my ankle fused in 3 weeks (as even with the removal of scar tissue) I still have dorsi flexion at all in my ankle - I am really quite unstable walking around without my crutches as my foot is stuck in a way that it drags along the floor and I trip up very easily - it has been a very frustrating time for me. I just hope that the fusion will allow me to be more active and get some normality back again. And I am assured I will eventually be off the crutches ... fantastic thought!

PS - I did also have all the metal work removed from my ankle (they thought this might have been causing some of the pain - but it hasn't helped with the pain at all)

Good luck with your recovery - a pain management clinic might work wonders for you in your recovery.

Sep 03, 2009
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dorsiflexion
by: Jenny

I just had my 7th surgery since my ankle accident, the surgeon dug out a lot of scar tissue as well as extra bone growth (due to lack of cartilage) and lengthened my Achillis tendon. Prior to this surgery I couldn't even get my ankle to neutral, now I'm 7 centimetres past neutral and I think it will improve. I think surgically freeing up the joint by digging out all the impingement will help,

May 22, 2009
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Frozen ankle
by: Anonymous

I too am suffering from 'frozen ankle' after breaking both tib and fib in left ankle - does anyone know if removing scar tissue from ankle will help with dorsiflexion of ankle - it has now been 16 months since my accident - don't think I can cope with being on these crutches much longer. I am currently at physio & hydrotheapy every week as well as swimming every day ... any advise would be greatly appreciated - my ankle joint just won't move which is really frustrating!

May 04, 2009
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Scar Tissue
by: Jenny

Am getting the scar tissue removed this August. Its been almost 15 months since my initial injury, am still limping, in pain, and my ankle is virtually frozen. The range of movement has gotten from bad to worse. Am hoping that removing the scar tissue might free up the joint a little bit, I now have serious problems in both knees and hips as well, am so fed up!

Mar 30, 2009
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me too
by: grant Jordan

after an ORIF on my right ankle, i have been in therapy now for 2 weeks,(its been 4 months since my motorcycle accident) and i too see no improvment in range of motion. in fact it seems to be getting worse, i know i have severe scar tissue that is hendering me, but is this normal? i go to therapy 3 times a weeks also and everytime they bend the ankle and twist it as far as they can(very painfull) but no improvment. can my ortho go in orthascopiclly and remove scar tissue?

Nov 25, 2008
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Any suggestions?
by: Jenny

Hi Bart

I am still preserving with physiotherapy 3 times a week, and doing my own exercises at home. I have problems with swelling, I take anti-inflamatories and when I can, put my foot in a bucket of cold water to cool it.
What is really frustrating is that my range of movement has not improved at all in the last 7 weeks - my physiotherapist measures the distance between my knee and toe and there is not even a 1 centimetre gain. I know I should be doing more exercises, controlling the swelling more, but I'm becoming very concerned that I might be stuck limping. Granted that time starts again from my reconstruction surgery in August, its been 3 and a half months since that. But you can imagine how fed up I am, having been on crutches/crutch for almost 10 months now. Remaining optimistic is easier said than done, can you give me any other advice?

Oct 23, 2008
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posterior tibialis pain
by: Bart - SII

You most likely have a significant amount of scar tissue built up all around the ankle - I know that they removed a lot with the last surgery, but adhesions and such could be restricting normal gliding of the tendon.

Also, since you don't have normal motion yet, the posterior tib is working harder to help stabilize the ankle, and is likely having some overuse issues.

Soft tissue massage around the areas that are painful and the course of the posterior tibialis may help to reduce any adhesions or healing by-products - and time and strengthening should also help.

Bart

p.s. Great Picture!

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