I'm just back from the Fracture Clinic with the confirmation as to whether Joe has broken his leg again. Initially the Fracture clinic were unaware of the new situation and Joe had to go and have another Xray. This time they did the whole of his lower leg to include both the new and the old injury.
We were taken off a room just outside Mr Wakeman's (Joe's surgeon) and left to wait for a while. We sat fingers crossed awaiting the outcome. Mr Wakeman came in. Michelle asked...
"Has he broken his leg again"?
"No, not as far as I can see", and then he went on to explain what may have caused the confusion.
He took us into the room and brought up the Xray on the computer monitor, on the screen was a massively blown up image of the tibia, right at the top where the meniscus
On the Xray, you could clearly see the whole of the plateau edge and it was clear of any damage, cracks or otherwise...
"Now if I zoom out so that you can see more of the Tibia"... Mr Wakeman zoomed out so that most of the top end of the Tibia was visible, he pointed at the screen, "You see this mark here"... We looked and there on the bone, in a length-wise configuration, just below the plateau, was a line. "This line is a result of the bone beginning to grow around the pins and is the mark that's been left by the removal of the pins. I can only guess, the surgeon on Sunday has seen this and has been unsure about what it was, hence the confusion. There's nothing else there, as you can see that indicates any damage". He continued... "The swelling and the pain was probably down the fact that the fall ripped open the wound and the stitching. The wound inside is far worse than the wound on the surface. When the pins were removed, we had to insert equipment into that little hole and then dig around in the tissue to find and grip the end of the pins and then wiggle the pins out of their increasingly secure position where they were starting to become embedded into the bone. The surface wounds will heal far sooner than the internal wounds and the bash has obvious not only dislodged the surface wounds, but has probably done the same to any healing that had started to happen internally".
Man was we relieved! They removed the plaster and re-dressed the wounds and it was obvious that he was far more concerned with the fact that the stitch hadn't been replaced. The wounds were cleaned up again and 'Steris strips' put on to close up the wounds. With no weight bearing on that leg over the last week, Joe's lost the confidence and possibly the muscle bulk, to take his weight or lift the leg, so from a physio perspective he's probably gone backwards a couple of weeks. He's now got a bandage around the knee to restrict the bending and this is primarily in order to keep the 'Steri-strips' from coming free. With regards weight bearing and general use of the leg, he's got to take it easy and he's been given the go-ahead to go back to school, but if it snows or the ice returns, we may have to re-think that. If the weather is fine he can go back, but he's not allowed out in the playground and he can't do any PE. We've got another appointment at the same time next week to monitor how things are going, but this is no longer with regards to the bones, this is all about the healing of the wounds externally in the first instance. Once they're closed up, I would imagine they'll then reinstate the physio regime and Joe will be back on track. I'm hoping that come the end of March, Joe will be running around, playing cricket, football, basket-ball and doing Karate again. But in the short term he's literally got to find his feet again.