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Date of last update: 10/01/2017.

Forum Name: Bone trauma and fractures

Question: Swelling around surgery site a month after.

 senenami - Thu May 07, 2009 12:09 pm

I'm currently going through Tibia(R) lengthening to correct shortening of 9 CM.

Info: 10 years back I had Corrected Osteotomy and Fibula head excision. Had growth plates affected then and underwent Osteotomy to correct 2/3 CM difference. Fibula excised as it's growth not affected and started proturding outwards. It's a hard ball that hit on the tibia face which affected the growth plate.

In the current surgery both tibia and fibula is cut for distraction.

My questions:
1. I told my doctor that I have severe ankle pain. The doctors analyzed the X-Rays and found that my fibula is not distracting but only tibia.
But I had the same severe ankle pain when I had femur distraction. Is my ankle pain source is because of fibula not distracting or it can be something else.
Please note my ankle pain went off when I had a break after my Femur surgery.

2. The surgery site got swelled up after 3 weeks and its not going down at all. It's been swelled like that for almost a week continuously now. I'm yet to see my doctor and explain this. I know the whole leg swelling is normal when I sit for a long time, but not just the surgery site.
Yes I'm doing more physical activity (like walking) than before as advised by the doctor.

Awaiting reply. Thanks for your time.
 Tom Plamondon PA-C - Thu May 14, 2009 11:19 am

User avatar Hello,
To answer the first question, it is hard to tell if the ankle pain is do to the fibula. If the ankle joint space on x-ray looks normal and the distal fibula position is normal I would think something else is causing the pain.
If the pain occurs mostly with weight bearing then assessment is focused on leg length, compensatory movements, and integrity of foot joints, ligaments and tendons.

For the second question, with localized swelling at the surgical site it is important to follow up with the physician for examination. Look for other signs of infection (pain, drainage, foul smell, redness, and warmth.)

You may be doing too much weight bearing too soon - this could cause the swelling and even affect the ankle.

Take care and let us know how things turn out.

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