Saturday April 10, 2004. 1:15pm. I was playing basketball with friends from work when the ball run out the basketball court over a guardrail. Being the closest to the ball, I run after it and stupidly enough climbed the guardrail. A second or less later, I was lying on the ground unable to stand up. Momentarily I realized I must have broken my leg, as it was angulated below my knee and could not move it. Pain was increasing with every minute I was waiting for the paramedics. Finally I was rushed to the ER where I was diagnosed with a slightly displaced, angulated tib/fib fracture, couple of inches below my knee. The orthopedic surgeon did not cast me right away, because of the risk of compartment syndrome, as he explained.
Tuesday April 13, 2004. After three painful days in the hospital, visits from my friends and my wife, and nasty hospital food, the big day came when I was strolled to the OR for a closed reduction. Next thing I remember was the freshness of oxygen brought to my nostrils from two plastic tubes and a big full-leg cast starting from the top of my thigh to my toes. After couple of hours in physical therapy, I learned that the crutches are my new best friends, and that they will help be get around and climb up and down the stairs. Next day I was discharged with the instructions to keep my leg elevated, use ice, take my cumadin as directed, have my PT/INR done twice a week, and visit the OS a week from today.
Thursday May 6, 2004 (week 3). My second visit to the OS was really pleasant. X-rays showed that there is bone growth. I’m continuing to take cumadin and the OS said I could take an overseas flight for two weeks to visit my family.
Wednesday June 2, 2004 (week 7). The OS decided it is about time to take the cast off. I was terrified – what if the bone has not healed yet and will break again? The Dr reassured me that there is not such possibility. After he took the cast off, I felt vulnerable and unsafe. The bone did not heal 100%, which is normal at 7 weeks for tib/fib fractures. He put on a splint which I can take off and have a shower (!!!) and slowly try to bend my knee. Now I can step on my broken leg – with crutches – and move my ankle joint, however I still can’t drive which is very annoying. By the end of the month my OS wants me to be almost full weight bearing.
Monday June 7, 2004. This is my first day I went to work after almost two months. It feels really great to be able to move around a little bit and get out of the apartment. My ankle is still swollen and I have to keep my leg elevated most of the time and use ice by the end of the day. Seems like my knee, rather than my fracture, hurts when I walk.
Saturday June 12, 2004 (8 1/2 weeks). All week was going to work either by car (friend who lives in the neighborhood) or by train. Today is a wonderful day. Weather is finally nice after raining all Friday. My ankle is swollen much less and I can take much bigger steps with my bad leg.