So I know it’s only been 2 weeks in the fracture walking boot and using the bone stimulator, but my foot feels GREAT! I’ve been doing the Exogen, doing PT, wearing the boot and wearing the home-madeish orthotics. I feel virtually pain free! Should I keep wearing the boot, or should we go ahead and get me an xray or MRI? I clearly don’t want to get back into anything to early or prematurely, but I also don’t want to expose myself to more fatigue and atrophy. I have New Years trip planned, and I absolutely must be able to dance my little booty (butt, not walking boot) off! Let me know what you’re thinking! Should I still wait another week or two?
Thanks for checking in and I am glad to hear you are doing so well!
MRI would be be a waste…you will (predictably) still have lots of edema in the bone and the radiologist will almost certainly read it as an ongoing/active stress fracture even though you and I know (based on your improvement and lack of pain) it is really a successfully healing stress fracture.
One option is to simply continue doing what you are doing for another 2 weeks to allow more healing. In that case we would assume you are further consolidating the bone and strengthening the stress fracture. If you have no pain, no swelling and no bruising over the next 2 weeks, then we may assume it is okay for you to stop using the fracture walking boot then. Above all else, we have to make sure you don’t re-crack the healing bone, suffer a set-back and lose all of the progress in healing you made over the past 2 weeks.
X-ray is a good idea. Given your diligent use of the boot and bone stimulator, you may well have healing that has stabilized the bone enough to get out of the boot. If have seen this happen in runners as quickly as 2 weeks (even though the dusty, crusty doctors and medical textbooks tell us it takes 6 weeks).
If you get an X-ray, you have evidence of solid progress and bone healing on the x-ray and it doesn’t hurt when I manipulate it, press on it, etc, (and I can feel any hard callus on the bone under the skin) then you may be cleared to get out of the boot and transition your activity. In that case we would talk in detail specifically how to go about advancing your activity safely so you don’t have a set-back that jeopardizes your trip in 2 months.
Waiting for another 2 weeks or getting an x-ray and looking at the x-ray and your foot together are both totally reasonably at this point.
I can send an order for you x-ray if you would like. Just let me know what you prefer.
And good work on all you have done to get to this point!