|Fifth metatarsal (Jones) fracture. Not my foot, but you get the idea. Picture source: eOrif.com|
Well, quite a lot has occurred since my injury on May 29. My Canadian VacoCast has become a permanent part of my life. It's more of a love/hate kind of relationship as I know I need it, but I really can't stand wearing it. This summer has been extraordinarily hot in Boston and with weather over 100 degrees, wearing the VacoCast is like have a mini-sauna on my leg. Every time I say that, I think of the Progressive commercial. The line is at 0:21 if you're looking for a quick laugh or a frame of reference -- "It's like a sauna in here."
All joking aside, I'm seriously hot in this thing, but I figure that soon my misery will be over. After all, I was set to see the orthopedic surgeon on July 3rd and then life would be back to normal, right? My flip flops in hand as I left for the doctor's office, I had visions of skipping (ok, maybe not skipping, but walking unencumbered) out of his office. First stop was the required x-ray with long wait times and then his waiting room (more waiting), and then finally the exam room. A quick look at the x-ray, then my foot, then a few questions, and then the decision. Four more weeks in the boot! Seriously? Yes, seriously -- four more weeks. There was now a gap in the fracture that he had concerns about. It could mean that the bones were now displaced or (and this is what I was hoping it was), it could be the bone filling in and causing it to look like a gap. Either way, he not only wanted me in the boot, but on crutches so I wouldn't put any weight on my foot.
After getting over the shock of four more weeks in the boot, I shoved my sandal in my bag and decided I would be an incredibly compliant patient. I had learned that the pump that wasn't shipped with my boot was, in fact, quite important as it makes it stiffer and more form fitting. Turns out the company, OPED USA, is located in the Boston area in Waltham. I contacted them immediately, but because of the holiday, they wouldn't be back in their offices until July 8th. However, the one salesman, Ken Dupuis, definitely went out of his way to accommodate me and offered to meet up with me before then if I needed it. The boot worked ok without it, so I opted to wait until the 8th and drove over to their offices to get it. Getting crutches was less fun as I had a prescription for crutches if I went to a DME supplier, but I can't seem to find one anywhere. I stopped at Walgreen's instead and bought a pair there. Probably not the best idea.
|The dreaded boot AND crutches|
My affiliation with the church of crutches continued for about two weeks. Then I lost all faith in their efficacy and we parted ways. I get why I needed them, but now my foot no longer hurt, it was no longer swollen, and it seemed like those pesky crutches weren't worth the extra effort at all. Let's just say that someone needs to come up with a crutch workout because I was huffing and puffing every time I used them.
|Ta-da! Left foot magic. Ok, clearly no time for a pedicure. Don't judge me!|
My flip flops were packed and I made my way back over to the doctor's office. Every time I drive, I have to take the outer part of the boot off and then strap it back on before I exit the car. Let's just say that I do this several times a day. Inside the office, there was more waiting in x-ray, then the waiting room, and finally I was able to sit in the exam room. I was extremely confident because I wasn't having any pain, my foot wasn't swollen or strange looking. I planned on walking out of there with my cute pink flip flops and heading to Marathon Sports afterwards to get fitted for the most perfect pair of running shoes so I wouldn't ever have to go through this again. Well, hold on one second there. The doctor had a different opinion on this matter. Yes, there was bone growth, but he wasn't confident enough in me being out of the boot yet. Now this is where extreme patience is needed. Four more weeks in the boot was prescribed. He also wanted to know where my crutches were and I told him, "...in the car?" So back on crutches, still in the boot, and absolutely no weight on my foot.
Could I be upset about this? Absolutely! But I'm not going to let this get me down. If I try to get back to normal too quickly, I could injure it or worse, break it again. The fifth metatarsal bone is notoriously slow to heal and all I can do is be patient and wait. Or can I? For the record, I love Freecycle and my area Freecyclers and I was able to pick up a pair of crutches from someone so yes, I do have crutches now.
I decided to research what I could to help my bone heal faster. I was already doing some things right like not smoking, I'm already taking my fair share of supplements (multi-vitamin, calcium, Vitamin D, etc.), exercise (don't tell my doctor), and it looks like my high-protein diet was going to benefit me and bone healing. What I didn't know was that you're not supposed to take aspirin or ibuprofen, but you could take acetaminophen. I also read about MK-7 and MK-4, both of which I liked because those are my initials after all. What is it? Vitamin K₂ is thought to help with bone growth and is supposed to help prevent fractures. Guess I should have read about that way earlier than July 31, 2013. Probably the biggest thing I learned was that some people may be out of the boot in four weeks, but some stay in it 12 weeks or longer. On top of that, it can be six months or more before they are back to anything that resembles "normal" foot use.
Although limited in getting around these days, it's not going to prevent me from planning trips, thinking about the future, getting caught up on posts that I had meant to get up previously, and most importantly, working on updating this blog and moving it as I had promised to do. It just means I need to exercise patience with everything. Maybe this was all intended to teach me a valuable lesson. We shall soon see if it did.