Broström Repair – Surgery Day And the Aftermath

Well, survived that one! In case you missed my last couple of blogs, I just went through Broström Repair to repair a torn ATLF ligament as well as Arthroscopy to remove two pieces of bone fragments on my right ankle. Apparently, I’ve had these fragments for a long time and there’s enough scar tissues built up over the many years. First question people ask is, is it because of running? Nope, this predates all of that.

Broström Repair

I woke up early to eat a simple breakfast since I was required to fast for 6-8 hours. My wife drove me to the hospital to check in at noon. They took me to a pre-surgery/recovery room I got changed into the hospital gown. I was paranoid that they would make a mistake on which ankle to operate on, but no worries. The doctor came in and initialed by “right” leg *whew* and they added a compression sleeve to my left leg to keep the blood flowing. And oh yeah, I got on ivy for fluids, electrolytes and pain meds as well.

There were so many people asking the same questions (name, birthday, which ankle, do I have implants or piercings, etc.) Apparently they are pretty strict on the 8 hour fasting and I was a little off of that. My wife told me later, that there were even contemplating postponing the surgery. The anesthesiologist came in and rattled of stats, why they do the prep and offered me a choice of general anesthesia vs spinal one. I went with the former, ‘cos not a huge of needles.

I have to say, was getting a little jittery in the back of my mind, was thinking if I should call this off. Close to 1pm they rolled me out into the surgery room. More machinery, lights and pit crew started working on me. Someone noticed my heart rate was 50ish and they asked if I exercise. The doctor (who recently ran Way too Cool 50K, his first ultra) was explaining how I run ultras and I think that was the last I remember before going into deep slumber.

Post Surgery

When I woke up, I was back in the resting room and my wife came in shortly. I was a bit groggy (almost like jet-lag), but in high spirits. Maybe the Fentanyl they pumped through my ivy. And I was starving. Drank a cup of apple juice, ate a Clif bar and was surprised there was no pain at all. They wheeled me out to the car and we drove back home. My wife made some noodles with garbanzo “curry” loaded with loads of Turmeric, my go to anti-inflammatory. And pineapples for dessert, thanks to the enzyme Bromelain which is also an antithrombotic and an anti-inflammatory.

The rest of the afternoon went like this. Leg popped up high (elevation), 15-20 minutes of icing under the right knee on top of every hour and staggered dozes of Tylenol and Ibuprofen every 3 hours. They prescribed me an opioid and I decided to keep it as a backup if I really need it. I waited for the pain to come and was pleasantly surprised that it never did. Apparently Fentanyl wears off 20-30 minutes later and if they gave me a nerve blocker, that was long gone. By evening, I was working the chin-up bar and generally feeling good. My wife was like, ‘are you sure you ok?’ 🙂  Yeah, never better! Besides, when you have Chippy, the professional fuzz-therapist at home, who needs pain-meds?

Next morning, it was steel-cut oatmeal, spicy lentil powder, roasted peanuts and more turmeric for breakfast (breakfast of the champions!). Still no pain and I’m able to move around the house in crutches just fine. Two more weeks of this cast and the boot-phase begins. Looking forward to start walking again soon! Baby steps, baby steps (or so I keep telling myself).


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