dcb_Debra 2:30pm Jan 23 2018
Hi James, let's see if I can help.
Chloe is going to be in pain and probably depressed. If she isn't depressed initially, she will be later, almost certainly. Avoid telling her that "it could be worse." Be supportive and acknowledge that yes, it's a frustrating situation.
On a practical level, the two of you need to start thinking about things that can make life easier: for example, I spent most of the first 6 weeks sitting on the sofa all day. We put the travel kettle on the coffee table by the sofa, where I could reach it, and every morning my husband made sure I had mugs, a variety of teas, and enough water for filling the kettle during the day, but not so large a container that it was hard to move and pour it while bending sideways. And snacks, and tissues and so on within reach. I also have a couple of Sistema soup containers with a handle and a well-fitting lid, so I could heat food in the microwave then bring it back to where I could sit down to eat. A small bag in which she can carry stuff hands-free between rooms would be good. Maybe a largeish beanbag on which her leg can rest on the sofa/in bed (unlike pillows, the leg in the cast will sink in well and she won't need to worry whether it will slide off the side.
Can she organise to work from home? I found that helped as I had something to concentrate on. Otherwise, and for evenings/weekends, she's going to need entertainment: it's time for her to re-read a favourite book series, or binge on boxsets of her favourite TV series or choose a craft project to do while she's immobilised. Or is there an online course she's thought about doing? Having two or three of these things to switch between is good.
Get her outside if possible, even if that just means driving to the local park to go sit on a bench for 10 minutes (less fun in winter, but still think what you can do). Make sure friends come round to chat, play board games or whatever.
Reassure her that not managing to shower at the beginning is okay - I had to sit on a chair next to the sink and wash with a cloth to start with. Later you might think about a cast cover so she can shower - easier if you have a shower over the bath so you can work out a way for her to sit (I sat on a plastic step stool, with my leg up on a partly-deflated Swiss ball (exercise ball)); the first shower felt amazing.
N.B. be ready to find it tiring if you are working all day and doing both your usual chores and the ones she normally does and helping her by fetching stuff etc.
Good luck to you both. It does get better with time!
James R wrote:
> Hi everyone. Iíve spent most of today Googling advice for
> broken legs and came across this site. It looks like a
> fantastic resource! 2 day ago on Sunday evening my girlfriend
> ChloŽ had an extremely unfortunate accident on her bicycle
> that resulted in her badly breaking her right leg. She is
> still in hospital at the moment and recovering from the shock
> and trauma of everything she has been through. It has been a
> nightmare 48 hours if Iím honest. ChloŽ had an operation
> today to try and mend her breaks, and is still asleep under
> general aesthetic and waiting to come around. Hopefully there
> will be good news to follow.
> While the doctors and nurses treating ChloŽ have been great,
> Iím still feeling at a real loss at what to expect once she
> is discharged from hospital and how best to help her. We live
> together, so I am going to be the main person looking after
> her through this, and I really want to make sure I do the
> best job I can for her, helping her recover as quickly and as
> painlessly as possible. I have been given a booklet on broken
> legs and having a leg in a cast - which has been useful to a
> point - but I was wondering if anyone here could offer some
> pointers or advice for someone getting through a bad injury
> like this? Perhaps something the nurses might not think of,
> but have been of help to people in the past? Hope this makes
> sense, and thanks in advance.
Fibula Fx lat. malleolus Weber B 12 June 2015
ORIF plate 18 June. Cast problems (allodynia) so boot from 25th but NWB.
25 July start PWB in boot, 7 Aug PWB without boot. 14th Aug few steps FWB.
9 Sept 10-steps jog 25 Sept: PT says go run!