Authored by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen in Health
Published on 10-22-2009
A broken fibula, a bone in the lower leg, often requires surgery to repair it. Patients will often need rehabilitation which will include rehab exercises for broken fibulas. Patients will have to refrain from putting weight on the affected leg for approximately one month and will need to use crutches to get around. They will have their cast on for approximately six weeks and after it is removed they will need to begin doing their rehab exercises for broken fibulas.
Alleviating ankle stiffness, a common after-effect of a broken fibula, is very important after the cast is removed. There are a few rehab exercises for broken fibulas that will help the ankle get back to its full mobility. The ankle should be able to comfortable move in a circular motion in all four directions. It should also be able to comfortably move up and down, and side to side. After being casted for six weeks, the ankle’s range of motion is often compromised. To regain this full range of motion, move the ankle up and down, and side to side. Hold each position for ten to fifteen seconds, relax the ankle, and then repeat these motions several times throughout the day. This rehab exercise for broken fibulas can also be done anytime the ankle feels stiff.
It can be difficult to exercise the ankle after a broken fibula because it will be weaker after being casted for several weeks. Patients who are having trouble completing the ankle range of motion rehab exercises for a broken fibula can use their other foot to assist. To do this they should use their other foot to help push and hold the ankle in place when stretching and moving it. They should be careful not to push too hard though. If it ever becomes uncomfortable or painful the patient should take a break. If the pain does not go away or gets worse, the patient should contact their doctor to make sure they did not re-injure their leg or ankle.
Patients recovering from a broken fibula also need to stretch and strengthen their Achilles tendon. Because this tendon was not used for six weeks, it will have become weaker and less flexible. Achilles tendon rehab exercises for a broken fibula can be a bit uncomfortable at first, but if the discomfort continues or gets worse, patients should stop doing the exercises until their doctor tells them it is okay to resume. To stretch the Achilles tendon, patients can stand on the edge of a stair and lower their heels slightly down to fully stretch the tendon. To strengthen the Achilles tendon, patients can do calf raises. To do these, patients should stand up straight and slowly raise themselves up onto the balls of their feet. Both of these rehab exercises for broken fibulas should be held for ten to fifteen seconds, and repeated several times a day.
Before doing these rehab exercises for broken fibulas, patients can use heat to loosen the muscles and other soft tissues. This can be done by using a heating pad for ten to fifteen minutes or by soaking in a warm bath. This can also be repeated after doing rehab exercises for fibulas to prevent the muscles and other soft tissues from becoming sore.