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  1. #1
    Endo Girl
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    Bonking ... not feelin' well Broken Leg....How long til you were back on the bike?

    Hey all,

    I did something completely idiotic this weekend and broke my leg in two places (and my thumb). It may take surgery to fix my leg. I'm extremely athletic (ride, kayak, run, horseback ride etc.). I was wondering if any of you out there have experienced this...and how long did it take to get back on the bike(etc.)?

    Thanks,

    Sky

  2. #2
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    Depends where you broke your leg (lower, upper) did you also have ligament damage? Just be patient, your body will heal itself, don't think in weeks but in months. Based on my experience you will probably ride the bike, ride the horse and kayak faster than you will be able to run.


    April 28, 2007 - I fractured my ankle bones (tibia and fibula) while mountain biking. I had surgery the same day to have four screws to put everything back together (two on the left and two on the right side of my ankle). I also had major ligament damage to the ankle area. I also had a smaller fracture to the tibia just below the knee.

    May 07 - After the surgery I was in a splint for two weeks and when the swelling went down they put me in a below-the-knee cast. Was in a cast basically all of May and pretty much all of June.

    July 07 - Had a second surgery to remove two of the screws. The other two screws stayed in the leg and are now permanet. Spent July in a Darth Vader walking boot and still in crutches.

    August 07 - I started Physical Therapy on the ankle (stretching, moving it around, using a big elastic band) and could walk a little but with a limp.

    Sept 07 - started learning how to walk again, more PT, still had swelling, finally got on my bike for very short spins on the street. Riding was easier on the ankle than walking!

    Oct-Nov 07 - Lots of self- PT (stretching, strenghthening, etc) I could walk OK, ankle still very stiff, finally hit some easy fire-roads with nothing technical.

    Dec 07 - Jan 08, back to riding 2-3 times a week and hit single-tracks finally, but always walked the technical sections....confidence slowly coming back.

    Feb 08 - Bike riding back to 100% prior to accident. Hitting technical single-tracks, riding the hard technical section....no more walking the iffy sections. Still painful to run but walking was OK.


    The next time i break something I hope its and arm because not being able to walk sucks.

  3. #3
    2WD
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    I'm experiencing it now - I broke my leg in 3 places, distal tibia and fibula and proximal fibula, back in April -the 24th. I had an i.m. pin placed in the tibia with 4 screws, 2 distally, 2 proximally - all hardware is staying. I got the ok on June 19th to be partial weight bearing and so I started to ride my trainer. My next appointment is on the 17th and I hope to get the full weight bear ok and then I'm going for a bike ride- so that will be 3 months. As for what kind of a bike ride it will be..... I also plan on riding in a 10hr relay race and do a 24 hour race in August. Whether I will in fact be able to do so is another story, but that's my outlook at the moment.
    I'm hoping I'll be able start physio therapy at after my next appointment as well- all my Dr. wanted me to do until I start physio therapy was to flex my ankle and knee, which I pretty much had back my full range of motion by 4 weeks - yoga is a good thing, and swimming too (bonus of not having a cast).
    Did you have surgery?
    I wish you good luck, stay positive, and to get back on your feet in no time!

  4. #4
    Three sheets to the wind
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    Welcome to the club! I got hurt in May (see avatar) and didn't ride again til the next spring. I broke my thumb this past May 25th and just found out 2 weeks ago I'll need to have the UCL re-attached, I see the hand surgeon tomorrow...

  5. #5
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    Hey, I'm in too. I broke my heelbone (calcaneus, or something like that) just screwing around with my kids at the beach. That was two weeks ago...I'm still in a splint while they are treating a blood clot and waiting for the swelling to subside, but we plan to put me in a cast in a couple of days. The surgeons decided against surgury b/c of the clot...it was a borderline call anyway.

    I will be in a cast or boot for at least three months (no weight bearing allowed), and then on to some PT but the orthos have not begun to discuss what that entails...flexibilty and load-bearing work is my guess.

    My similar-aged, more injury-prone friends are telling me to figure on six months to semi-normal. And that the road bikes will see action before the MTB will.
    Dad is sad.
    Very, very sad.
    He had a bad day.
    What a day Dad had!

  6. #6
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    Geez, lots of broken legs.

    I broke my tibia, fibula and ankle. My doctor is telling me 9-12 months before I'm back on the mtb, and 12 months for 100% recovery (generally). I'm probably going to upgrade my mountain bike (while replacing stuff I broke/bent in the crash that caused this) but I'm thinking about building up something new too, just to pass the time.

    /me signing in
    :wq

  7. #7
    Can Tree Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by nachomc
    Geez, lots of broken legs.

    I'm probably going to upgrade my mountain bike (while replacing stuff I broke/bent in the crash that caused this) but I'm thinking about building up something new too, just to pass the time.
    I'm down with that...I will send my fork and shock in to PUSH now and not have to sweat the turnaround time. And if I tell them to tune them to my current weight, I've got some extra motivation to not blimp up.
    Dad is sad.
    Very, very sad.
    He had a bad day.
    What a day Dad had!

  8. #8
    Endo Girl
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    What a summer huh? I am seriously becoming a very grumpy person that bites everyone's head off! I need some activities before I get any worse. My ex-boyfriend is coming up from Australia to visit me and I'm seriously thinking that being stuck in the house with him for hours is going to put me in an even worse mood. Maybe I'll put a sign on the door that says I moved to Antartica to study ice! Meanwhile...the knitting lessons are going really well!

  9. #9
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    I broke my tibia and fibula on June 16 2007; I had surgery on the 20th and got the okay for weight bearing with crutches last Friday (7/13/07). My doctor said that it looked perfect except for the swelling so I’m now wearing a compression stocking and it has gone down quite a bit in the past few days. I made the mistake of wearing some long baseball type socks that were probably too tight right below the knee that exasperated the swelling.

    But more importantly, I went on a 20 mile road ride on my mountain bike this past Sunday and the leg never felt better . I’m wearing a boot now and just tried to keep it on a platform pedal as best I could. Hopefully the boot will come off next Friday.
    Read "Misery" by Steven King, it will make your leg not hurt anymore.
    Good Luck

  10. #10
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    Congrats on the speedy recovery

    Quote Originally Posted by santacruzer
    I broke my tibia and fibula on June 16 2007; I had surgery on the 20th and got the okay for weight bearing with crutches last Friday (7/13/07). My doctor said that it looked perfect except for the swelling so I’m now wearing a compression stocking and it has gone down quite a bit in the past few days. I made the mistake of wearing some long baseball type socks that were probably too tight right below the knee that exasperated the swelling.

    But more importantly, I went on a 20 mile road ride on my mountain bike this past Sunday and the leg never felt better . I’m wearing a boot now and just tried to keep it on a platform pedal as best I could. Hopefully the boot will come off next Friday.
    Read "Misery" by Steven King, it will make your leg not hurt anymore.
    Good Luck
    but you are back riding after only a month? Don't you mean you broke your leg in 2006? If it's true you are healing so fast there's no freakin' way your injury is anything like the guy above with the pictures (nachomc). I'm just saying this to give everyone reading this thread a reality check--don't expect to be back as fast as a month. If it happens, well good on you. When I broke my wrist I was casted for 7 weeks total and after maybe two months without a cast I could finally shift my Honda Element. A neighbor says, "yeah, I broke my wrist--in three weeks I was good to go!" Really, I replied, arm in cast. If your particular breakage is allowing you to actually get on your bike in a month after surgery I guess miracles do happen!
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  11. #11
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    shattered my femar last year. 1 week in the hospital, one ti rod through the lengh of the bone and 3 screws. 3 weeks wheel chair/walker. 3 months in crutches before i learned how to walk again. 7 months later before i could ride or do anything really physical. I still have the rod and screws in my leg but back up to 100% now. So it all depends on the break. Generally hair line fractures will be 6-8 weeks for the bone to heal and what ever time after that for the mucles to get back up to speed. If its a worse break then figure more time. Your doctor and x-rays will let you know how long its going to be.

  12. #12
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    any pics of the break?

    here are some of mine

    inital break



    after surgery


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by xcguy
    but you are back riding after only a month? Don't you mean you broke your leg in 2006? If it's true you are healing so fast there's no freakin' way your injury is anything like the guy above with the pictures (nachomc). I'm just saying this to give everyone reading this thread a reality check--don't expect to be back as fast as a month. If it happens, well good on you. When I broke my wrist I was casted for 7 weeks total and after maybe two months without a cast I could finally shift my Honda Element. A neighbor says, "yeah, I broke my wrist--in three weeks I was good to go!" Really, I replied, arm in cast. If your particular breakage is allowing you to actually get on your bike in a month after surgery I guess miracles do happen!
    Jeez, I never compared my break too anyone’s, everyone’s injuries are different. I was talking about my leg which I am very familiar with. It has been a month and a couple of days since my accident and exactly four weeks since surgery. So don't say it’s not possible to ride after four weeks. By ride my bike I managed to ride 20 miles on the road in almost two hours while wearing a huge black boot, but I was at least moving.
    Now let’s move on to discuss when my Titus 29er will finally get here as it’s already 1 ½ months’ late

  14. #14
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    tib fib torque break on Mt. Hood.

    Surgery for rod and screws. When you have the rod inserted it acts as a cast and actually helps speed up the recovery. The rod supports the leg so you can put weight on it, the broken bone has pressure which calcifies the break, helping you heal.

    Anyways after a month i was on a trainer. A couple weeks later i was taking the road bike out for rides. Hit a wall in recovery finally went to see a Physical Therapist. i can't stress enough that the dough i spent was totally worth it. Stretches, exercises, and expert opinion on how to recuperate fully.

    i'm a roofer by trade and i was back to work before 10 weeks. Painful first week, after a few months i was running around normal and with no pain. Probably around 5 months later i crashed, endo'd on a steep rooty section. Landed with all my weight on the steep hill onto my bum leg, as i fell forward down the hill into a sprawled out superman pose. After a quick second of assessment i was really really stoked that my leg supported all my weight after that crash. After that the mental fear you get after a major injury (favoring your injured limb) dissipated.

    The rod and screws are still in there, and sometimes i get a quick short sharp pain from it, but it's still not enough to get me to schedule a surgery to get it removed...
    .~...|\
    ...~.|.\
    ..~..|..\
    .~...|...\
    ~....|....\
    ...~.|.....\
    ....~|____\
    _____||_________
    .\....FAILBOAT..../

  15. #15
    Endo Girl
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    Quote Originally Posted by santacruzer
    Jeez, I never compared my break too anyone’s, everyone’s injuries are different. I was talking about my leg which I am very familiar with. It has been a month and a couple of days since my accident and exactly four weeks since surgery. So don't say it’s not possible to ride after four weeks. By ride my bike I managed to ride 20 miles on the road in almost two hours while wearing a huge black boot, but I was at least moving.
    Now let’s move on to discuss when my Titus 29er will finally get here as it’s already 1 ½ months’ late
    You are my hero!

  16. #16
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    I just got home from the hospital. I had my surgery this week (Wednesday the 18th). I got an internal plate on the fibula and ended up with external fixators for the tibia. I have to pins in the tib and a bar drilled through my heel, all connected by other bars to make a frame.

    Before I was discharged, the nurses removed my bandage to show me pin car. Obviously this exposed my leg - what a weird feeling that was to see my leg like that. I cracked up a bit :\. When I can stomach to look at my leg again, I'll get some pics of it.
    :wq

  17. #17
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    Here are some new pics following my surgery:
    Four to five weeks of this thing:





    A pretty good macro of the pins going in to my tibia:



    If you click the broken leg link in my sig, you can see all of the pics.
    :wq

  18. #18
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    It looks like you have some nice high-tech hardware…too bad it’s not for your bike. How long do you have to have that on? Hopefully your recovery will go better than expected.

    All I have is a little 3” scar from the surgery where they put screws in, however that fat foot looks very familiar. I actually did a real road ride yesterday with the “B” group at the shop I ride for. I went a little further than I planned, 52 miles, but kept up until the last five miles when we hit a series of roller hills and I just don’t have any power to climb anything while wearing the stylish black boot. I was down to 5 mph on one hill. Hopefully in the next month I can get on the real bike and have fun. I ordered a new Titus Racer X 29er back in May and it should be in any day now

  19. #19
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    Nice, man! I'm hoping to get some goodies for my Epic when I start riding again next year. I haven't had my LBS inspect it yet, but from the few minutes I was able to look at it, I bent the rear wheel pretty nicely and flattened the rear tire and there could be some damage to the chain rings but I'm not sure. I'd really like to get a nice new wheelset, some new tires and then some other, smaller stuff to finish it off.

    As for this thing, I'll be in it for 4-5 weeks. Originally, the doctor said 6-8 weeks, but he said the surgery went really well and that I'm exceptionally healthy (thanks, cycling!) so I was healing fast and he expected that to continue . After I'm out of this thing, I'll be in a plaster cast for a few weeks. I think at that point I'm going to look in to a gym membership at the local Gold's so I can start lifting weights (upper-body only, and at the recommendation of my doctor) and be ready for my PT since they have a pool and swimming is another great thing to do during healing. Once the plaster cast is off, I'm in a walking brace. Once I'm in the walking brace, the real fun begins and I can start exercising on a stationary bike and trying to walk again .

    Until then, I'm off work for the next week at a minimum (I think I'm going to push for one more week to just give me a little more time), then I'm working from home until I can drive again. Thank goodness I have that option. I've got to figure out a way to get clean though; Unfortunately the showers in my house aren't very big and I am (6'3) so I'm having a hard time sitting and getting clean without considerable discomfort and pain.

    I don't ever, ever want to break a leg again
    :wq

  20. #20
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    Getting around on one foot

    I had knee surgery a few years ago and I was on crutches for a few months. A friend loaned me his pair of crutches that the permanently disabled use...permanently. He wasn't but he had a pair for some reason. By that I mean, not the kind the hospital gives you, which are the ones that fit under your armpits and make going downstairs a real adventure, but the ones that cup around your forearms and you use your arms more to get around. This type of crutch uses mostly your forearms and triceps and I felt it was more balanced and worked out my arms more (I've always belonged to a gym and "enjoyed" the workout).

    Anyway, if you get a chance, give them a try. Maybe you've been hurt before, maybe not, but I'm guessing no. It's a real shock, as most of the posters on Rider Down find out, the unbelievable inconvenience it all is. The paranoia, the stumbling around, it all takes a toll on your mind...but you're probably as drugged up as I was so it's easier to handle. Just keep the long view, that you will get back, but it's going to be awhile. Every point of progress you make will be an appreciated milestone and when you finally do get back on the bike for the first time...that will be a moment that will bring tears to your eyes. I've had that experience twice and I don't really cry a lot. Good luck and keep us informed as to your progress.
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  21. #21
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    How’s that leg doing? Hasn’t it been a week and a half since your surgery?
    I went to the doc yesterday and my crutches and black boot are now for sale (today is exactly six weeks since my crash). He told me no offense but he didn’t want to see me again.

    I’m down to wearing an ankle brace for the next few weeks and doing some physical therapy (on my own) to strengthen my ankle. I’m planning on stuffing the ankle brace into a mountain bike shoe and going for a road ride this morning. To add to the good news my long awaited Titus 29er is shipping Monday , so I might be capable of some slow rides on it next weekend.

    Hang in there, a week after my surgery; I was so stir crazy I had my wife wheeling me around the neighborhood in a borrowed wheelchair after dinner.

  22. #22
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    Nice, man, I'm glad you're doing so well

    I'm doing ok, it's been nine days since surgery. I'm finally able to walk on my crutches and walker without getting completely out of breath, the swelling has come way down and I'm able to get out of the house finally. A buddy came and picked me up the other night and I went shopping for my wifes' birthday, which was awesome. So far the worst thing that's happened was when I took a nap yesterday and had a very real-feeling dream that I was riding my Epic again. Then I woke up and it sucked .

    I have a doctors appt next week that is my first since surgery, so we'll see what they say. I'm probably six to seven weeks out at this point until I'm in the walking brace; three more in the fixator and then 3-4 in a cast. I'm really looking forward to walking again and to getting on my road bike on the trainer

    Thanks for asking
    :wq

  23. #23
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    Here's a post-op xray of my leg:



    It's weird to think that those screws will be in my leg for the rest of my life
    :wq

  24. #24
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    how to get back on the bike

    I know it's way too early for you to think about how you are gonna get back on the bike, but here's what I did:

    May - Oct Concentrated on healing (start working that ankle as soon as the cast is off)

    Nov - Dec Street riding on platform pedals and tennis shoes

    Jan - April Trail riding with platform pedals/ straps and cage, biking shoes


    May to present Trail riding with clipless again (yeah!)

  25. #25
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    Broken Tibia May 1987 (hit by car turning left when I was going straight on a bike.)
    4 months to get back on bike.

    40 pound full length plaster cast for 1 month.

    full length fiberglass cast for 1 month. (yes, I went swimming with it on a hot day.)

    knee high walking cast for 2 weeks on crutches.

    walked on walking cast for 2 weeks.
    no more casts! walking only for 3 weeks. (lots of pain too)

    TOTAL:
    back on the bike in about 4 months. full recovery= 1 year maybe?

    Best part: Dr. cutting off casts to find dead bugs and leaves and stuff in them.
    "Stephen, your cast is on fire." (was drying it out over a campfire. Put it out in the sand)
    Me at the carnival with the 40# cast on crutches waiting in line for a throwup ride: "Hey Mr. Can I go on this thing?" Carny: "You got 2 tickets?"

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