Need advice

Although I'm new here, Ive had MS for over 30 years. Last summer I had a bad fall and broke my ankle, needing surgery. I was non weight bearing for 5 months and just given the OK to weight bear. My calf muscles have lost most of their strength, and I can't stand on them. A PT comes to the house, but is only doing bed exercises, and I don't see any improvement. A rehab is out as i've used all my insurance days. I've seen a standing frame on line, but they are expensive. Any advice? I'm so discouraged.

6 Replies

  • Hi Lori658 welcome to the best chat ever, if l do say so myself😊

    So sorry about your ankle. Was there a reason why they didn't put you in a walking cast? Just curious.

    As far as the PT at home tell them that your ready to do more. And call your Dr so that he can tell them also.

    But l would definitely tell them you had enough of the bed exercises.

    I'm pretty sure that msaa has info on different exercises, not for sure tho. Ck them out, they can at least point you in the right direction.

    Toll Free Helpline (800) 532-7667. ext. 154

    I hope this helps a bit, let us know how it goes 😊


  • Agree with Jes, there are just times we need to be the boss. If insurance is exhausted, perhaps a friend or relative can assist you with excercises. MSAA can be very helpful.. check with them. Lynn

  • Hello Lori658 I was a physical trainer when I was working so I might can give you some insight. The only thing you need is a chair. If you can

    1) Practice standing up from the seated position (10-15reps). If needed use another chair for support while standing.

    2) While standing behind chair, perform calf (toe) raises (10-15 reps or as many as you can comfortably)

    This is just a couple exercises that you can do for start. Do what you can do and as often as you feel able. Don't do too much and confuse soreness with pain or vise versa.

    I hope you feel better and this helps you.

  • Hello Lori, Like the other members of this community, I am sorry to hear about your fall and injury. In 2002 I tripped, fell, and broke my wrist. It was a bad break requiring several surgeries, culminating in a bone graft, a heavy ex fix and pins to keep things in place. After 6 weeks in the first cast , the bones had begun to heal, but I had little use of my left hand. I had followed the first surgeon's direction to not use my hand. A second surgeon disagreed (rebroke/reset the bones, etc.) and told me to start wiggling my fingers. Six weeks after the second surgery I began physical therapy and stayed with it for more than a year (I had fallen while employed, so my employer covered my PT/OT). I was very fortunate to have the attention. But the work of PT belongs to the person with the injury. A therapist suggests, shows how, but I had to DO it.

    The level of pain can be daunting (this is how I came to hate those little emoticons used to gauge the level of pain). I was helped by accupuncture and a strong determination to use two hands. I named all the activities I enjoyed that required two hands and constantly strove to focus outside my self (outside the sensations that felt as if my wrist were on fire, or bathed in ice water, or stabbed with needles, shocked by electricity, slashed with broken glass) choosing to see the nerve signals as signs of healing and not brokenness. This will sound crazy, I know, but I sent mental messages to the site of healing, telling my left wrist we would return to kneading bread, picking grapes, holding wildflowers, playing the piano... because I wanted the use of two strong hands. It took more than a year to regain the ability to make a circle with my thumb and little finger, to make a fist and so forth and I still have only about 25% range of motion there BUT I can use my wrist and my fingers for almost all that I want to do. Though most of the time I forget the injury, if I lose my balance and whack my wrist against a chair or door frame, the wrist remembers, screams in pain...and I have to send it another mental message, calm down, nothing's wrong, you're not hurt.

    This is long, but I want to share, to help you understand that you can begin the healing by doing the work. Royjr's advice seems sound. Start moving, wiggle your toes if that's what you can do, and if you can't yet wiggle your toes, send the message until you begin to feel the result. Keep focused on what you want to do with your healed, strong ankle. Begin with the goal and you will surely arrive! All of us will be cheering you on. You go, girl!!!

  • Some excellent thoughts on different exercises best suited for when you have MS, everyone! Lori658 - if you'd prefer a good video to watch, either while you're exercising or as a primer beforehand, MSAA has "A Closer Look at The Benefits of Exercise" in our online on-demand MSi video library here:

    - John, MSAA

  • Lori658, it's Fancy1959 responding to your plea for ideas about standing frames. I just got off the phone with the National MS Society and they suggested that you give them a call to see what they can do to help. The phone number for the National MS Society is 1 800 344 4867 and press Option 1. They would ask you speak to a navigator on their site and they would help you to find resources that you might not have known were available. They will make sure you know your employment rights having MS and being disabled with your ankle. I believe it would be worth your while to touch base with them as well. I used to have a connection in the Southeastern Indiana Kentucky MS Office for assistance with equipment but she has moved on so that was a dead end. I hope between phone number I provided and the phone number that Jes provided you can find assistance with the problems you're currently having to do to your broken ankle. Please keep in touch and let Jess and I know if either number helped or if they both helped, which helped the most. It's always important for us to know what resources comes thru the best. It's always a big fear for me to fall and break something such as your hip or your ankle. I hope you continue to fight for your rights and I hope you continue to push for your insurance to give you additional Physical Therapy once you are mobile and back at work. You need physical therapy if you ever hope to get that like totally back. It's amazing what PT can do to strengthen pulling your leg muscles and your ankle. Don't give up on yourself! Please keep in touch and let us know how the ankle and the leg are doing. I would like you to remember that together we are stronger! I'd also like to invite you to become our newest MS Warrior. As an MS Warrior, we never give up and we never give in. We just continue to fight on! So Lori, to you i say fight on MS Warrior, fight on!

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