Peggy's diary | Respond to this comment
Comment : Re: Re: Re: In a blink of an eye a tri-malleolar fracture and my whole life changed
Posted by Donna Donetti on Fri 9:14pm 4 July 2003
On June 8, 2003, I stepped on a ladder to hang some blinds. It was an aluminum ladder that I had used many times before without incident. Suddenly, as I reached up to put the blinds in place, the ladder twisted. I watched in horror as the bones in my right leg popped out of place. I was taken to the emergency room by ambulance where they x-rayed,
splinted my leg, started me on pain meds and told me not to bear weight on my right leg. I was sent out with a prescription for pain medicine and crutches and told to follow-up with an orthopedic surgeon. My husband stopped at a 24 hour Pharmacy on the way home and got the prescription filled but they didn't have any crutches for a person my height. When we got home, I got hubby to bring my computer chair out to the truck and from there I scooted into the house using by left foot and grabbing stationary objects to propell myself around. The next day, I attempted to schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon to whom I was referred while in the ER. It turned out that I could not go to him on my health plan. So, I contacted my primary care physician for a referral and was sent to a podiatrist who told me he could not treat my problem and that I needed to go to an Orthopedic Surgeon for an ORIF. Called back the primary and got a referral to a surgeon on my health plan who turned out to be rude and beligerent. Got another referral and couldn't go to that appointment because X-rays were left at the nasty doctor's office. By the second day of depending on husband and friends for rides, I decided I had to be able to drive. Surely there was some way I could drive. So, I called around and found out that a left foot accelerator could be installed in my vehicle that would enable me to drive with my left foot. The cost $200 and worth every penny. I had the ORIF on June 16, spent 2 days in the hospital and another 5 in a care center. The day after I got home from the care center I had my left foot accellerator installed and have been driving ever since. I have been using a lightweight titanium wheelchair which I am able to load behind the driver seat after removing the wheels and placing them on the passenger seat. The wheelchair has really been a godsend as I become extremely fatigued hopping on my left foot with crutches and find myself requiring 3 hour naps on days when I try to use the crutches. From reading about some of the experiences of others in this group, It seems that there are lots of ways to overcome the limitations of our injuries. However there is a reluctance on the part of insurers to help us become mobile during our recovery. I have had very little help from insurance in the way of getting equipment needed to function with this disability and have had to self pay for or borrow needed equipment such as the wheelchair, a tub bench, hand held shower and grab bar. Does anyone else have the problems with fatigue when attempting to use crutches and how do you combat this?