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My Experiments With Fractures

Our body is a temple and we need no excuses to take out 20-30 mins a day to take care of it , other than our laziness.

Our body is a temple and we need no excuses to take out 20-30 mins a day to take care of it , other than our laziness.

When I was 16 years old, I had a minor accident. There were two men following me on a bicycle, I was on a scooty, so I sped up. But due to the potholed roads, I fell down instead and the scooty was lodged on my leg.

The men were quite far behind but several other people came for help. I refused any help saying I was okay (cuts and bruises on my hands, jeans torn off, leg injured) and I came back home somehow. Then my father’s ‘best friend’, also a doctor, came to see me.

He said my leg was not fractured (despite swelling and intense pain) and told me to walk a lot so that I can heal it fast! I asked for a proper checkup due to the pain but no one agreed. I guess he must have had a personal vendetta against me because no doctor I know would let any such case go without an x-ray.

Almost a month later, I still had difficulty walking, so I had an x-ray done. Yes, a month of intense pain due to the trust my parents had in their friend and not me (the age old “sharma ji tumhara bhala chahte hai” story).

So, my right ankle had a minor fracture which had not healed and had resulted in a ligament rupture as well. Moreover, everyone blamed me for not saying anything despite excessive pain.

Lesson: Always take decisions yourself. You will be blamed for your life no matter who takes your decisions.

Nine years later

I twisted my leg badly on the stairs. This time, I was not ready to take chances. Here’s a step by step process of my journey:

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  • I went for a proper checkup. Took lateral as well as oblique views of my foot just to be sure.
  • Self -diagnosed and started taking care even before the reports: 5th metatarsal fracture of the right leg yet again. (I am a doctor myself, but anyways, if you notice swelling and pain you can start any of these methods if your reports are late)
  • Took complete rest for 10 days, didn’t move my leg and kept it lodged nicely on a pillow. Little movement of the fingers would be helpful.
  • Warm water baths, hot water treatment for the legs, medicines. Mustard oil massages (optional)
  • I preferred a crepe bandage as it was easier to remove it for the water treatment and applying the topical gel for pain reduction.
  • Milk, fruits and eggs daily without fail.
  • I drank a little less water to reduce my frequency of bathroom breaks in order to rest more (personal choice)
  • You may start gaining weight but its better not to worry about it for the first 14 days and start mild exercises later
  • Started exercising from day 14 onwards. It included mild stretching of my leg and foot, and no stress on the fractured area.
  • Always wear an ankle cap/guard and use a pillow below your legs if you are exercising on the ground.
  • Exercise should be done without fail, everyday. Start with 20mins of daily exercises and increase it to 30-40 mins by the next 2 weeks.
  • You may start by core exercises and lift ups and crunches of your legs into the chest and upwards.
  • Do not apply any weight on your foot till you are comfortable.
  • You may experience some discomfort in which case you must reduce the intensity.
  • Around day 25-28 you will start feeling a little comfortable and you may let go of the pillow. However, keep using the ankle cap/ankle guard.
  • Do not attempt any jump exercises until after 1.5-2months as it may further damage your foot.
  • Lastly, continue the exercises as it is beneficial for your overall well being as well.
  • Remember: no stress, no tough exercises, core exercises more frequently and no jumping.

I noticed that my foot was ready to do a little jumping in a month from the fracture (may vary among individuals). When people say that exercise and diet helps, start believing them.

Our body is a temple and we need no excuses to take out 20-30 mins a day to take care of it , other than our laziness. Stay healthy, stay happy, and learn to care and cure yourself.

Image Credits : Unsplash 

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Dr Arushi

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