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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board

Foot & Ankle Problems Board Index


I am scheduled to have a Brostrom Procedure on January 19th on my right ankle. I have never had ankle surgery before and because I am a college student, I am looking for tips, explanations, and any other helpful information any one can offer. I was told it will not be done arthroscopic, therefore it will just be an incision made on my ankle. He said research has shown this gives better results. He then told me I would be NWB and on crutches for 6 weeks. I am wondering about pain after surgery,how mobile people were ( I have about a week off school and that's it) type of cast people were in (showering tips) and any other useful information. I also wanted to know when people usually begin rehab and how this process has worked out for people. Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
Greetings! I had the Brostrom procedure on November 23. I also had an additional procedure done to lengthen my calf muscle to relieve pressure and tearing of my Achilles tendon. I am runner (slow runner). I had my surgery on a Tuesday and returned to work (I am a school social worker and work in 5 schools) the following Monday. If I had the sick time I would have taken additional time off. I had both general and local (nerve blocker) anesthesia. The never blocker was awesome and kept my pain down for the first 36 hours. However, I did not do as the doctor said and failed to start my oral medications BEFORE the local wore off...ouch. Days two and three were pretty painful. However, I gather by your post that you are much younger;) I am NWB for eight weeks and then will be sent to PT for rehab. I started with a temp splint and was put in a hard cast at two weeks. I was not prepared for the mental effects of having a cast...after ten days I had the cast cut off and I was put in a boot. I am 100% NWB and my doctor lectured me on staying that way if I wanted to return to distance running and ice hockey. I use a cast cover that was purchased at a medical supply store for $28. It is awesome and never leaks. Here is what I feel that you should know. The physical pain is tolerable. The mental and emotional pain has been horrible for me. I have two small kids and am a single mom. Not being able to carry a landry basket up the stairs, not being able to shovel the huge amounts of snow we have and most importantly, not being able to run has been harder than I thought. I am not meaning to scare you: but rather prepare you. I was NOT prepared enough. Running is my therapy. I have made it 5 weeks and now can't wait for the last three to pass so I can get my running shoes back on my feet where they belong! I do believe the procedure will be worth it as I was barely able to run 7-8 miles (each mile into my run got increasingly painful - some days I could not run at all). My goal is to run a half marathon before I turn 40. This would not be possible without the surgery. I think you could return to school as you plan. I would suggest that you limit all other activity other than classes. I also have to tell you the knee walker is a true blessing. It has saved me from throwing the crutches in the snow bank several times! I wish you the best of luck and hope that you have friends and family to help you with daily activities that we often take forgranted...I can truly say that the mental part of the process has been very very difficult. However, I have a greater empathy for those with a physical disability. I have promised myself to reach out to others that I see that might need a helping hand... please feel free to ask any other questions - I wish I had asked more!!!
I will be a few days in front of you my surgery is set for Jan 17th. One thing I will tell you is get a knee walker as it will help you stay off your foot as much as posible I know you will be NWB for 6 weeks that is what i was told also and it will really help so much better then crutches. (my mom had one when she need surgery a few years ago) you can rent them at a med suply store my doc did a precripton for one so it can go though insurance.

This is what I was told
first week 1/2 cast then staples come out NWB
6 weeks in a fiberglass Cast NWB
6-8 more weeks in walking boot with PT

what did your doc tell you?
Hi Sportzgirl,

I just had my Brostrom procedure done on December 14. I've been NWB in a cast for five weeks. I still have 11 days in my cast and then I'll go into a boot. I've been pretty active while in the cast and on crutches. Probably more than I should. I still have swelling but it's manageable. I've been going to class as well. Its not easy on crutches but fortunately my nursing school classmates and faculty are very accomodating and helpful. I was also fortunate enough to have my surgery over the Christmas break so the worst part I was able to lay on my bum and prop my foot up with a pillow. Four days post op I went to a wedding, so don't think you have to stay at home all the time. Elevating your foot is a must though. Even now mine will swell and start to hurt if it's down too long. As far as emotion wise I did well. I didd get frustrated the first week on crutches. (Especially when I biffed it trying to go out my apartment door...ouch). I embraced it though. I decorated my crutches and looked at crutching as good exercise. I have lost weight by crutching so much!! :). I'm estimating my full recovery to be around 3-5 months with therapy. Keeping on top of the pain is a must. This was my very first surgery and I was scared to death but it went very smooth and very well. I hope your surgery goes well and that your recovery is speedy. Hopefully some of my insight helped calm nerves and answer some questions!! Godspeed!!
i had this done on dec 21,2011,i also had the gastrocnemius with it, my atfligament was 85% torn(i asked how bad was it),,,,,,was in a splint cast for two weeks stitches taken out 2 weeks now in a airboot, i start therapy on jan 23. maybe people heal differently i dont know but the proceedure isnt bad at all. ohya, they sent me home with a front wheel walker and a wheelchair for nwb. good luck

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