I saw an article this week http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/sportsdoc/Why-is-76er-Ben-Simmons-foot-fracture-taking-so-long-to-heal.html. That reminded me of questions and sometimes complaints I get in the office every week. The question is why does it take a fracture so long to heal? First off, most of the time the question is asked about normal healing time. Somehow folks think that fractures should heal overnight. While that would be great, it would be described more appropriately as a “miracle.” While I do believe in miracles, it doesn’t happen much in my clinic. So what is normal? I use my active, healthy son as a good example. He was 13 years old when he broke a bone in his hand. It was a simple fracture with good position and just needed to heal. He was placed in a cast for 6 weeks. So that is “normal.” Some fractures are more complicated with poor position, larger gaps or space between the fragments or instability where it wants to keep moving around. On top of those poor indicators you have to add on that most of us need to use these bones to put all of our weight on. With some fractures like the one Ben Simmons has you add on the risks of poor blood flow to certain areas and you can have a fracture that may take 3 months or more to heal. So I’ll just apologize now to all who may end up in my office with a fracture. It’s going to take time to heal and you are going to have to slow down and in most cases use type of cast for at least a month. Even those toe fractures that “you don’t need to worry about” still take months to heal and need protection. So I’m sorry you broke your foot but I need to treat the fracture and tell you that you most likely will not be breaking the laws of nature this month and will have to just try and patiently wait for this fracture to heal. We’ll get you through it by following the healing with x-rays and protecting it with a boot or cast or special fracture shoe and give you recommendations to get you back to normal activities just as fast as we can. Don’t live life with a foot fracture. Come see us right away and we’ll speed the process along just as fast as humanly possible.
Don’t Live Life in Pain! Call us today for an appointment at 505.880.1000. We take care of your feet…so that they’ll take care of you!
Nathan Ivey, DPM