Posted by: onhiatus | July 26, 2012

One week out of the cast - how much swelling?

Today marks one week out of the cast.  Didn’t go into the boot– instead, no weight bearing on the leg for two more weeks and then well.. I guess we’ll see.

Heard that the boot helps decrease the swelling. Is that true?  And how much swelling is normal? This is my leg yesterday after a normal, not so majorly active day.

photo swell

It doesn’t hurt at all (nothing like the swelling the first few days after surgery when you feel like your leg is being smothered by a python) so should I even be worried about alleviating the swelling? Any long-term damage by not doing so?

I can feel a slight tingling when I touch the scar though. You can feel the sensation shoot down through the foot. Wondering what this means but first PT session in the am so I’ll learn more.

Excited about finally to start putting a training plan in place and moving forward in this process!


Not sure how long since your surgery? But even for me I am only 4 weeks post surgery tomorrow and I was only in a cast for te first 10 days, now in a boot!

I find that I need to elevate my leg much as possible to keep the swelling down, the boot is great as you mentioned a security blanket. Hopefully only another 4 weeks on crutches and then load bearing for me!

Hope the recovery goes well

That’s odd to not have the boot as a transition - there seems to be a lot of that this week. When I first got in two shoes I had LOTS of swelling, and still do after a lot of standing and walking. (12 weeks) That looks pretty painful! I’m going to go shop for some compression socks to see if it helps.

Your ATR looks about right. I’m not a doctor but I’ve been to one for the same thing. I’m at week 15 and I still have swelling. I expect that I’ll have swelling for quite some time.

Blessings & I’ll say a prayer for your healing.


Wow no boot? I guess your Dr has his own thoughts. I don’t think the boot reduces swelling it is more of a precautionary tool and getting the foot in tune to walk with the camber of the sole. I used the VacoCast and loved the adjustable hinge for Planter and Dors flexation. I Don’t think I would have been able to go cold turkey from cast to walking without the boot first. At 42 weeks now and I don’t recall exactly when the major swelling ceased. Probably around end of March-April 6-7 months. never experienced pain, as for sensatios and feelings in the foot I can walk barefoot on gravel without a problem. Whereas early on if a feather touched my sole it felt like a knife. I have only slight swelling now and then but then I am on my feet alot and back to full activities. happy Healing. YOu will get there, my recovery is becoming a blurr now at 9 months.

I never saw my foot for 5.5weeks as I was in a cast, but went straight to boot, also I’m non-op healer.

They say keep the foot elevated above the heart to reduce swelling - but swelling is a coping mechanism, the immobility will help protect you (to some degree) without a boot so when your not elevating it, expect the swellign to return.

I am with Dory on this 100% - I know the transition from cast to shoes was (for me) made safer with the use of a hinged boot…. but a standard hinged boot won’t help with that swelling….

Any vacocast users know if that boot reduces swelling?

Happy healing man - if it were me, I’d be asking about a boot though, or looking to buy my own, for peace of mind.

I wish you good healing :)

I went straight from cast to shoes too, although much later on, at 9.5 weeks. I had similar swelling to yours at first and my physio said I should be keeping the swelling down as much as possible by elevating and icing throughout the day. I have much less swelling now, at 12 weeks, and am pretty pleased with my progress, despite apparently not following the best protocol. I’m sure you’ll be fine too :-)

Take a look at the YouTube video on contrast bathing - especially the one with the 3 containers.

I’ve tried it and it’s not comfortable, but afterwards it feels great, and the swelling reduces (may take 2 -3 times) as the circulation improves.

You only need 2 containers by the way as the ice comes in a bag (Tesco, etc).

@pauls wow- sounds like you are recovering quite quickly! After surgery I was casted for 6 weeks. It’s just the initial fear once the cast comes off and you realize how easy it would be to re-injure yourself. Good luck on your recovery, too!

@kimjax can’t wait until I can say that “walking” word :-) Let me know if the socks work.

@skutr- thanks! and good luck on the tough mudder training!

@doryt thanks for the inspiration! The transition was definitely scary at first. A week in it’s OK.. I notice I am just a lot more cautious when crutching around. Do you feel you are back to almost normal activity level at 9 months?

@andrew1971 thanks! It’s Ok now since I am still non weight bearing. Totally fear what awaits as I put pressure on the foot and don’t have the boot on uneven surfaces, etc.

@hala awesome. thanks! it’s kind of crazy how normal it feels in a shoe so I just have to be careful to remember not to try and stand on it. Congrats on your progress!

@hillie- huge thanks- will check out the video now! How is your progress coming along?

I guess almost back to normal. I have resumed all activities but I am not 110 % or out in front. I am back to XFIT 3X week, hit my Spin class 1-2 days and walk 3 miles a day and sometimes I’ll throw some sprints throughout my walk. I have small improvements everyday. Last week at XFIT we did a 200 meter burpee broad jump challenge. I was midpack where as before injury I finished in top. I am getting better at running everyday. My stride is not as long. I am not last so I am happy with my recovery so far. I’d say the last 3 weeks my calf muscle has really improved. Giving a 12-18 month timeline for myself to be at my athletic pre injury status.

You are doing crossfit? That’s awesome!

Doryt, I agree with Frustrated coach - you’re already back at cross fit– and 3 times a week? That is so good to hear. Congratulations!!!

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