View Full Version : Sprial Fracture of Tibia - fixed internally - Happened to you?

01-27-2010, 04:42 AM
I broke my tibia skiing last week. It was repaired internally via titanium rod, plates and screws by a very experienced surgeon (has done 500+ of these).

Has anyone out there had same thing happen to them, and what was your recovery experience like:
- rehab/physio
- which sports you could resume first/last (esp.tennis!)
- how is your leg now
- how is your skiiing now?
- any long terms positive/negative effects?


01-27-2010, 07:52 AM
spiral fractures are not very pleasant to have. depends on your age as to how fast/slow you recover. usually tibial fractures put you out of any impact activity for close on 3 months or more - depends on your surgeon really. you would need physio in that time. I am a physio but not seen too many of the spiral fracture types. Usually mainly from skiing accidents but can be rugby of motorcycle too.

If no joint is involved and you push the rehab and stay within constraints for bone healing you are told about then you should make a good full recovery but may have an achy leg for 6-12 months. Good luck

01-27-2010, 08:11 AM
I'm 41 yr.old male in very good shape and (was) very active (tennis, weight training, ice skating, biking, golf etc....) I get the stiches out and dressings off this Friday and my GP will hook me up with an orthopaedic suregon for follow-up and physio/rehab. I had a knee surgery 5 years ago but this tibia fracture did not involve that knee. The upper incision is below the bottom of the knee and I only have about 30 degrees of motion right now (1.5 weeks after operation) as knee is very stiff.

My toes cramp at night while I try to sleep - DRIVES ME CRAZY!!

01-27-2010, 08:39 AM
Let's see.... :cry::cry: some not so great memories...
Broke tib in 10 places, fib in 3, compound, and of course, "spiral" in 1971. 13 pins total, one 7" rod, wire in more than 6 of the pins, 3 heads of screws still kinda protruding right where a rightie server would smack it..:)
Hip cast 7 months, short cast 6 months. Just freed thigh smaller than my upper arm, calf smaller than that.
5 days after release, went surfing at OceanBeachSF, the heaviest wave in California for it's size. Not so great, it was 6' hollow, really tubing and spitting, but sorta easy to paddle out. Rode 3 on my belly, didn't consider standing up.
7th day of freedom, built a heel lift, rode 20+ lefts and rights at WanderInn, Pacifica, surfing what my buds termed...."stiff, you sucked". Of course, I still crutched it to the water's edge.
One year later, started to jog on soft sand.
2 years later, could sorta hop and run in any kind of sand.
3 years later, started playing tennis for physical therapy
In those days, 1971, standard physical therapy like today was unheard of.
Of course, I continued to to ride my CZ 250 and Montessa Scorpions all the way thru.
By '76, I could run normal.
By '79, started racing motocross again.

01-27-2010, 08:44 AM
Oh, girlfriend in 1988 did a spiral tib/fib from twisting on a 2hbh with the front foot planted. Luckily, I didn't hit that high ball to her.
I think more than 10 broken spots, 6 pins total.
5 months in short cast. Tried to windsurf right at the end of the season, 7 months from original break. Couldn't.
One year after original break, could windsurf pretty well (she was the fastest female windsurfer in the world), but never pushed it after breaking her tib/fib.
She went thru modern physical therapy, had insurance, the whole ball of wax.

01-28-2010, 04:19 AM
LEE: back then the world's fastes male windsurfer was Fred Haywood, but I can't recall the name of the world's fastest woman......hmmmmmmmm? You have sparked my curiosity!

01-28-2010, 05:59 AM
LeeD, I can't believe you're still walking around after all that, much less playing tennis. Amazing stuff.

I broke my tibia & fibula just above my right ankle. No surgery for me, Instead: 5 months in a full cast, 1 month in a half cast, 3 months in a walking brace, and finally walking with a cane after a year. Another year before I could run.

Before I broke my leg I was really fastů now I'm half fast.

OP Good luck with your PT.

01-28-2010, 07:54 AM
thanks: surgeon said I was lucky to break my tibia on an angle as opposed to parallel to the floor (which would've required external cast). The healing + rehab for an angle break is 1/2 of clean, straight break. Bad luck of the good kind I guess.

01-28-2010, 11:40 AM
FredHaywood was the "fastest" windsurfer in around 1984, the year I met that G/F.
By 1987, plenty of men faster than Fred, Laird, and RoddyLewis. I'd go to Maui and sail right past them at ThousandPeaks, proven by the fact they'd invite me to stay with them at their houses in Maui....for free.
We'd collaborate on board shapes, them NeilPryde sponsored, me Gaastra. My boards were faster...Hauts and Seatrend customs.
I'd run into them in all the speed trials around California (many more than Maui), and my buds included MikeDelahanty, FerrisHamilton, DavidLeurs, BradDuffy, BardChristman, JD (JimDavis), and quite a few others. They mostly had faster times in all the contests than the 3 I mentioned above.
My girlfriend then was much faster than the "fastest woman", SharonThompson. Sharon went to the Euro trials. My girlfriend would regularly blow by her about 2mph faster, at least 50 times, as we'd all be in the same windsurfing circle of freinds and competitors.
I saw Sharon a few months ago, maybe Oct., after not seeing her in over 25 years. She remembered Cydnie like the plaque. Lucky for most women, and half the mens, Cydnie didn't like to compete officially.

01-29-2010, 04:43 AM
windsurfing is SUCH an under-rated/under-appreciated sport! It is sheer pleasure skimming across the water in beautiful places using only the wind

what a life on Maui in the 80's as the sport really took off!

I was just getting into it in the mid-80's and had a HiFLY raceboard (205 liters) with a Neil Pryde 6.1 RAF slalom and harness....all I wanted to do was plane

I remeber SeaTrend boards!