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My husband suffered an injury caused by reckless driving. He believes that he just sprained his left ankle and that this injury causes abnormal pain in his foot. He keeps his leg elevated and puts ice on the foot. It’s bee three days and he still can’t stand, it hurts very much, especially his heel. I think he might have broken it- his symptoms are very similar to those that one of my business associates told me about while describing his nephew’s condition (he earned shattered heal in a car accident). I need some advice on shattered heel - is it possible to self -treat it (my husband still believes that it will go away and refuses to seek help), what should we do?

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If your husband feels strong pain in his heel it is very possible that he suffered calcaneous or heel fracture. This condition requires immediate doctor’s diagnosis and treatment, so you shouldn’t hesitate any longer. His foot must be X - rayed with great caution since sometimes fractures are simply not visible on X - ray picture. Those are so called stress fractures and in order to see them MRI of the heel is sometimes necessary - the fractures are very small. X - ray will show the level of the damage - how many lines there are, if there are small pieces of bones etc. Surgery is very often recommended - the surgeon will place metal screws and pins to keep the parts together and remove the shattered pieces of the bone (if there are any). The recovery, unfortunately, can be a very long and painful process - the swellings can be troublesome, movements are highly reduced (in some cases there is no moving even up to six weeks, depending on how severe the heel is damaged), sometimes so called cam boot is recommended... Another complication is bone infection, a condition which is very often in this situation, so antibiotics must be taken to treat it. As you can see, this is not a foot injury that can be treated with a pack of ice. I urge you to seek for professional treatment. I also must warn you that mistakes are very often when it comes to calcaneous fracture - the doctors cannot recognise it or they just do not know how to treat it... If you do not think that the treatment is appropriate, do not hesitate to ask for a second opinion.
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