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Please bare with me as it could be a long post. the specialist i've seen has told me that my case is quite rare :(


Sept '07 i played 5-a-side football/soccer & a guy jumped down 2-footed just above my [left] ankle.
I played on, but after the 30min game, when i got outside, the pain set in & was unbearable. I couldn't drive home & had to be picked up (using the clutch was excrutiating). X-ray showed "no broken bone".

In pain, but slowly easing (so that i could at least walk) i played again the following week & again the week after thinking it must just be terrible brusing.
By this time, from what i remember, it was ok to walk on, but sore whilst running & terrible the morning after.
After the 2nd week of football, i decided to call the doc.

I was then signed off work for 6 months, during which i had 13 weeks at a physio, focusing on ligaments/tendons - no joy.

The time was now April '08 & i could walk on it fine, but it hurt when running/jogging/trampolining (basically anything putting enhanced stress on the leg).
Between April '08 & Dec '08 i saw 2 specialists & had the following...

* additional x-rays - results normal
* ultrasound scan - results normal
* MRI scan - results normal.

In November '08 i was sent for a bone scan...

* bone scan - stress fracture of the fibula.

So all this time we've been focusing on ligaments/tendons, it's been the bone!! Looking at the original x-ray, you could see a slight colour variation in the problem area, which i guess would never have been noticed without the bone scan anyway.

So, long story, well, long ...... it's now 16 months since i picked up the injury and i've been put into a cast for 6 weeks.

I'm naturally very pessimistic. Have been told that after this, then pretty much plates in the leg are the only thing that's left for me.

For a long while now, i've been able to walk as normal. I get discomfort after running, but this varies. Sometimes it can be crippling, other times it's not that bad.

My question is....

After 16 months, with my leg now in a cast for 6weeks, HOW likely is it that my leg will heal?

I guess that's a very washy question. I just can't imagine after this length of time that there's a good chance of it healing. I imagine the percentage to be extremely low indeed.

I can't find any cases online that exist with this sort of timespan for treatment after the injury itself.

Any feedback is greatly appreciated.


Well i had to call the doc today as this week my leg has been in such pain. Strange pain which i find difficult to describe. The closest sensation is that of cramp, but it's not cramp. I get it in the calf muscle & the area of the stress fracture.

Anyway, when speaking to him, he said he was shocked that i wasn't given crutches or even (and here's the best bit) told that my cast is NON WEIGHT BEARING!! So i was walking around on it for the 1st 4 days when i shouldn't have been - but i wasn't told otherwise.

So in my eyes, i've wasted 4 days out of the 6 weeks. He wants to see the cast on Tuesday.

Even still, i can't imagine that after 16 months, 6, well, 5 weeks+3 days in a cast is suddenly going to fix it.

Anyone able to offer some hope with knowledge that there's a chance/good chance it could still heal?


Well, the above aside...

On the topic of plates & pins...

The specialist i see seems to want to get through everything at top speed without having time to fully explain. As i may have a plate, i would like to understand it a bit better.

My understanding is that, a fracture is simply a break. A stress fracture is not quite a full break, but is cracked.
Now if you have a plate, then your bone will be getting drilled into. Surely this is even worse than a fracture as holes are getting put into your bone. Especially bad if it's ever taken out, as the holes wont even be filled by the screws in that case.

I know it can't be this simple as plenty of people have had this procedure. Hopefully you can see my logic behind the ocncern. I'm just looking for someone to explain it a bit bettet / put my mind straight.



To post an update:

I had the cast off & was told i may need another as stress fractures take longer to heal. Not happy as i wasn't warned about a possible 2nd cast. This was all by the main specialist guys umm, i suppose you may call them an assistant maybe? He sent me for an X-Ray. I played along, even though the other TWO X-Ray's i've had show nothing at all & told him this.
We meet after my X-Ray where after consulting with the main specialist, it's decided i don't need a 2nd cast as it should've healed in 6 weeks (bit of a contradiction on the earlier statement then ey?!).
He makes me an appointment for 4 weeks later when i then ask how does he know the stress fracture has healed. He tells me my day-to-day activities will tell me if it's healed or not.
I protest & say how it was BONE SCAN & not an X-Ray that showed i had a stress fracture. He claims to be able to see clearer on this C-Ray, but still hasn't told me yes sir it's fixed .... so in my eyes, he can't say conclusivley that it's healed like i guess he could with a 2nd bone scan.
Not happy with my treatment, i see my GP, who also cannot understand why i was not sent for a bone scan, so he faxes the specialist. I should've called last Friday for an update (assuming there is one) but i forgot to.

It sure did swell whilst in a cast, but that's mostly died down now. It's still slightly tender on the point of the fracture, so from that i'm assuming it's not healed, but i don't know for sure as the medical team are making me play the guessing game.

Overall, not happy with my treatment. I hate not knowing. At the end of my current sick note, it will have cost me 8.5 months work pay as i'm getting a fraction of my wage as i'm only getting the minimum of SSP. It's ok for others on their £100k wage, but i can't afford to be playing guessing games.

I just hope this tenderness isn't a true sign, and that it has finally healed, although i know that's not going to be the case unfortunately.


How have you got on? Ive had a fibular stress fracture for 6 months and it doesnt seem to be getting any better and hurts after walking sometimes. Suggested to go in a cast but i dont want to as i need to work. Another friend who is orthopaedic surgeon reccomended ultrasound thing on your leg? Keep me updated thanks