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Speed Skating Forum Most of the discussions in this forum will be about inline speed skating but discussions about ice speed skating and quad roller speed skating are also welcome.

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Old March 11th, 2011, 08:50 PM   #1
Mobjack
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Default Fibula fixation at ankle needs to come out!

Around 25 years ago, I had a skater's nightmare.... broken fibula at the ankle and major ligaments torn off, due to a nasty skating crash. Doctor fixated the fibula with plate and five screws, along with other fixes. Until about three weeks ago, things were just great with the ankle, except the skate boots irritating the skin over the plate and screws. But I could manage that.
Now however, the ankle throbs after skating, or any weight-bearing exercise. I saw an orthopedist, and at first glance he asked "is it time for the plate to come out?" He also mentioned that at this late stage, some of the screws may break on extraction. His reasoning for the pain: stress risers within the fibula at the top edge of the plate creating stress fractures due to unequal bending moduli of the two different materials.

With or without the hardware taken out, he indicated to take it easy for six weeks with no skating or weight training (, running or plyos :O. Problem is, with the hardware remaining, this will likely reoccur with a training schedule like I had previously. I can't stay off my feet for very long.

Has anyone else had a fibular fixation removed after a long period of time, and what were the consequences/benefits? Are broken screws worse than the plate rubbing against skin?

Thanks,
Doug
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Old March 12th, 2011, 05:12 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mobjack View Post
Around 25 years ago, I had a skater's nightmare.... broken fibula at the ankle and major ligaments torn off, due to a nasty skating crash. Doctor fixated the fibula with plate and five screws, along with other fixes. Until about three weeks ago, things were just great with the ankle, except the skate boots irritating the skin over the plate and screws. But I could manage that.
Now however, the ankle throbs after skating, or any weight-bearing exercise. I saw an orthopedist, and at first glance he asked "is it time for the plate to come out?" He also mentioned that at this late stage, some of the screws may break on extraction. His reasoning for the pain: stress risers within the fibula at the top edge of the plate creating stress fractures due to unequal bending moduli of the two different materials.

With or without the hardware taken out, he indicated to take it easy for six weeks with no skating or weight training (, running or plyos :O. Problem is, with the hardware remaining, this will likely reoccur with a training schedule like I had previously. I can't stay off my feet for very long.

Has anyone else had a fibular fixation removed after a long period of time, and what were the consequences/benefits? Are broken screws worse than the plate rubbing against skin?

Thanks,
Doug
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Old March 12th, 2011, 12:24 PM   #3
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Doug, I wish I could offer more than best wishes, but that is all I can. Recovered from a bad spiral of both Tibia and Fibula years ago but I don't have experience specific enough to your situation to offer any help. Again, best wishes on this!
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Old March 13th, 2011, 06:00 PM   #4
Mobjack
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Thanks for the replies. There is not much on the 'net about speed skating and plate removals. I'm putting on the old 100mm wheels in hopes that they reduce the torque on the fibula, as compared to the 110mm's. Hopefully that will enable me to remain skating until this situation is resolved. Can't wait to get out again and burn it up! Today's that day...Ankle has not been sore for the past couple days, so I'll just take it easy.
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Old March 14th, 2011, 02:55 AM   #5
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Had a nice, relaxed skate today. Put the 100mm's on (old 100's measure 97.2 mm) and instantly felt uneasy. They definitly do not have the grip as the 110mm's and speed stability is not there either. Still, better than nuttin'. Did an easy 18 miles in hills. The calluse over the plate is mostly gone so the skin is a bit sore. But the ankle feels good! Tomorrow will tell the whole story, though.
After about four weeks off the skates, it was so nice to be skating again! The sun was out, temp was a balmy 70 deg F. (much nicer than the 20's, 30's and 40's I've been accustomed to this winter) and one other skater was out, too.
I really pitty those of you who can't skate because of really fridged temps and too much snow! I would hope other activities would be decent substitutes. I've been sea-kayaking throughout the winter here, even with the 31 deg F. water and Nor-Easters we get. It is exciting in the nasty conditions, but somehow it doesn't make up for the four weeks of missed skating.
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