Casting Call: For Fractured Tibia and Fibula

[Moose is currently recovering fabulously, but here’s what went down for the first half of his recovery]

After a week of humility in a straight-leg splint and several percocets later, Moose had an appointment with the orthopedic doc. Here are the highlights:

  • Moose didn’t need surgery. (Praise His Noodley Noodliness.) If anything, the doc is against surgery for people who aren’t elderly and more frail, as he’s a proponent of letting the body do its thing. Right on.
  • Moose was given a full leg fiberglass cast. Half green, half purple. HULK SMASH.
  • Fun fact: The periosteum around the bone becomes engorged and forms a sac around the break, filled with all the cells and nutrients a healthy bone needs to heal big and strong.
  • The doc’s assistant is kinda hot, mostly due to his impeccably snarky sense of humor.
  • And progressive-seeming doc is a Trump supporter… “Tired of the politicians,” so he says. There’s always something.

I’d never really known how casts are applied around people’s limbs. My ignorance shows in the fact that I imagined something to do with plaster molds. Silly me. If you’re also unaware, they use fiberglass wraps that come in small rolls with a few feet of material. You wet the material and then get to work fast in wrapping it around the ailing limb. I think the assistant used about 6 packages of the fiberglass to wrap up his whole leg (Moose has the legs of Big Bird).

So Moose was scooting around on his butt for the majority of those 6 weeks to keep the weight off of his leg. And crutches were a pain in the pits. The percocet was terrifyingly addictive. The hospital had given him 6 pills to immediately take with him and also gave him a prescription he could fill later. He ended up taking 1 and then 2 and then 3 over the course of a day before throwing the rest down the sink. We never filled the prescription. He stuck to ibuprofen, profanity, and Tylenol for the rest of the few weeks it continued to hurt.

But Moose hasn’t let a bum leg render him too useless. If anything, I feel bad about the kind of work he’s done in his full leg cast. For example, he changed all for of our car’s brakes, which took at least 2 hours per tire over the course of a couple weeks. Such a trooper.

Moose Full Leg Cast Changing Car Brakes | The Lonely TribalistNext time, we’ll share the process of getting the damn cast changed out for a liberating half-leg cast. That doctor visit was a lot of fun. Stay tuned and stay (relatively) safe, peeps.

Michelle and Moose

11 Replies to “Casting Call: For Fractured Tibia and Fibula”

  1. Thanks for sharing, I know what he was going through and feel for him.
    I had a broken Fibula bone in two places, had a plate set in my ankle, in plaster eight weeks.
    That was five years ago, I still have the plate in my ankle, doesn’t stop me from climbing hills etc.
    Hope Moose is all right now and back to his old self

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your sense of humor. “He stuck to ibuprofen, profanity, and Tylenol for the rest of the few weeks it continued to hurt.” Perfect. My husband broke both of his ankles hiking a few years back. He was in two casts up to his knees. I can totally relate to what you are going through right now. Its awful. But at least he is ok! And at least you still have your sense of humor.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well garsh, if you can’t laugh about it, what else can you healthily do? 🙂 And yikes. Breaking BOTH ankles sounds doubly awful. At least Moose could hop around on his good leg after a while. Thanks for reading!


  3. Oh, goodness. Looks like he’s getting a good stretch out of it, though. Oh, fiberglass!!! When I was in training, back in the dark ages, we still used plaster. You want mess??? We used gloves, but it got all over everything. Then there was the heat. What makes the plaster harden is a chemical reaction that gives off heat, a LOT of heat, so the poor person who is supposed to be icing the damaged extremity also might get burned, more pain! And then when they took the cast off, well, more mess, plus the special cast saws that aren’t supposed to cut flesh, sometimes did…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow. We were discussing how archaic fiberglass casts already seem – plaster seems damn near prehistoric in comparison! And the vibrating cast saw is pretty neat, but yeah, the doc’s assistant told us a couple of horror stories of what he’s personally seen other doctors do to screw up people’s limbs by cutting into the bone. Yeesh.

      Liked by 1 person

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