Cast Claustrophobia Concerns

Friday I get my Splint cast off and I am concerned that I will get very claustrophobic in a hard cast. Does any one have any ideas what I can do. There has been a few time in the splint cast that I have almost cut it off and it’s loose. Are there any other ways to cast my leg that are not so confining?

16 Responses to “Cast Claustrophobia Concerns”

  1. I think surgeons put us into hard cast, so that there is no way for us to remove it (because we would if we could!) so probably they are right. It is for your proper healing. Sorry, it will not be fun. And I found the cast especially uncomfortable for the first few days. So keep elevating, rent some good movies - have a glass of wine. Cheers!

  2. To sryan2673,
    Totally understand your concerns. I had a bad night with cast claustrophobia last night, first time after three weeks in hard cast. Probably because I got a new cast that morning and it is rather snugger than the old one. Kept thinking about the Dremmel in the garage! But it wore off, just needed to “find a happy place” and try to relax. 2nd timer is quite right, and a glass of wine is probably a good idea too! Some of the US doctors seem to go for the boot a lot sooner than in UK, so there may be alternatives if you think you’ll really suffer. Hang on in there,

  3. It’s not as bad as you would think. Just keep it elevated and ice behind your knee. If you’re up and about it will begin to swell, toes turn purple and all that uncomfortable stuff. I was in a splint for one week, cast for 3 weeks and then put in a boot. My doctor was pretty good about making sure my cast didn’t cause any discomfort and I was able to go in at any time to have it changed out if it did bother me….Good Luck

  4. Cast Claustrophobia it sucks I have dreams about trying to get if off I had my dremal tool out the other night just about took it off ….my doc put me on calodapin 1 mg 4 times a day it helps a bunch

  5. When I tore my first AT (8 yrs ago), my Doc put me into 3 casts in a row, with me objecting more loudly each time. Finally, instead of cast #4, he relented and made me his first patient who EVER went into a walking boot — hinged and everything! It was a huge improvement in every way.

    Lots of modern rehab protocols — including the one I’m on now, for my second ATR — skip the casts completely, and the results seem to be better clinically, as well as easier on the patients.

    Hey, Tim! I just noticed that you resurrected a blog that had been dormant since September!

  6. The tan lines that a hard cast will leave are horrendous, Hopefully you had this cast over the winter months!
    I empathize with you, after breaking my arm and getting my cast off it was the strangest feeling, and my arm kinda smelled bad.

  7. I know replies you get will be useless - i hav e same problem, the only relief i hav e is to take off the split cast myself every night and sit still, then put it back (I count the number of times the bandages go around the limb to make sure it has the same compression - takes hours! I am goint to ring the AMA (doctors’ medical association) to see if there is an alternative to the “plaster coffins” - surely someone has invented something in 100 years!

  8. Karen,
    There are several devices that can and often do replace casts for foot/ankle injuries. There are generally referred to as boots. It doesn’t take much research on the interwebs to find them. As for calling the AMA, why bother, Google has the answers.

  9. Before I broke my wrist I would have laughed If someone had suggested such a thing as cast claustrophobia.
    Unfortunately, It is no laughing matter.
    I had a bad dream one night that I had my arm stuck In a pipe and woke up pulling at my cast !!
    I had to endure It for almost 7 weeks and I hated It. The only way I could get over It was to try and accept It and not to think too much about it.
    Keep it elevated on a pillow at night, keep It dry and don’t do too much physical exertion, or it gets very sweaty and uncomfortable.
    It helped me to know I had a joiner friend who could cut the thing off If I finally flipped !!
    Taking an allergy tablet definitely reduces any itching, and If It does get hot and sticky buy a balloon hand pump and pump cool air through the cast as often as you need it.
    Remember, that things on there for a reason. So try and put up with it.

    Good Luck !!

  10. wish that i’d looked this up a couple of weeks ago to know that i am not going insane. i’m close to panic now incase my doctor doesn’t prescribe more sedation. i can deal with the pain of a broken wrist, but i end up calling a distress line - nights when worst - to have someone talk to me while the med kicks in. i’ve tried to open the side that is not hard with a razor, and other times i would have taken it off any way at all - but not possible. my concern is that this claustrophia may become a life battle.the

  11. Oh please help so desperate . Really struggled with a temporary cast for 1 week plaster room made mistake and put boot on instead of plaster cast then when I returned to clinic doctor said no I want you in a cast . I said I didn’t mind the boot and he said a long as I good he would trust me to not take it off but could tell he wasn’t happy about it . But I’m now in more pain than before the clinic appointment don’t know what yo do but so scared if I phone he’ll say plaster it , I did kind of say to the lady doing the plaster room it made me feel ill the fault of it and she just laughted .

  12. Sitting with a forearm cast typing this with my bad hand…

    This one is not as bad as the full arm cast I had a few years ago where I had to be on Klonipin the whole six weeks. I got through it, but had to taper off the drug afterwards and was pretty unproductive throughout.

    If you are Christian, it helps tremendously to realize that the cast, after all, is ultimately a gift from God provided to us through our God-given ingenuity to heal us. Imagine the pain and deformity we would endure without them!

    Clothes constrict us, but keep us warm. Elevators, cars and planes constrict us but expand our horizons. Moving through the world naked and on foot with nothing to support our injuries and illnesses would be the worst!

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