I had my five-month evaluation with the orthopedic surgeon last week. The story remains the same. Fibula is healed, but the Tibia is not cooperating. The break closest to the ankle is healing well, but the larger break and bone graft, towards the knee, still has a gap and “gross movement” (break becomes a hinge point).
I have been using the Exogen bone stimulator for a month now and, although I don’t feel any difference, the bone is healing. I still lie on my back all day with my foot elevated, and if I know I’m not going to move for awhile I take the brace off to let my skin breath. My sleeping habits remain horrible and I when I am able to fall asleep I continue to sleep on my back, leg elevated.
During this last visit the doctor said I should begin to apply partial weight onto my left leg, while still wearing the brace. With the use of crutches I should attempt to walk using both legs, but to stop immediately if there is any pain or discomfort. He also gave me permission to try the same thing in a pool, keeping the brace on.
So at this point in the healing process there are two schools of thought.
- Stay the course. Continue using the bone stimulator everyday for a few more months. Continue the x-rays and evaluations and track the progress I’m making. In December/January if the break has not shown significant healing, then some sort of hardware (rod/plate) will be put in my leg to immobilize the break and allow it to heal.
- Install the hardware as soon as possible and let the healing really begin.
There are serious consequences to both options so I decided it was time to obtain another professional opinion and put the subject to rest.
I decided to go to a doctor over on O’ahu. This man was known for his skill in trauma surgery and is considered one of the best in Hawaii.
In all honesty I was hoping this doctor would have a miracle cure. I completely understand why people will try any crazy sounding scheme in the hope that it will cure them or make them better. Searching for that miracle drug or cure can help put control back into your hands. Control over your condition. Control over your life. It’s something you do not even realize you have when you are healthy and uninhibited. But once the control of your own body is taken away, you would give anything to get it back.