Open Reduction And Internal Fixation Of A Calcaneus Fracture

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

Open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) of a calcaneus fracture is surgery to fix a broken calcaneus (heel) bone. Medical screws, pins, or plates are used to hold the bones in place while they heal.

AFTER YOU LEAVE:

Medicines:

  • Pain medicine: You may be given medicine to take away or decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine.

  • Antibiotics: This medicine will help fight or prevent an infection. Take your antibiotics until they are gone, even if you feel better.

  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Follow up with your primary healthcare provider as directed:

You will need to return to have your drain or stitches removed. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Self-care:

  • Use crutches: It is important to use crutches correctly. Ask your primary healthcare provider for more information about how to use crutches.

  • Ask when you can bathe: When you are allowed to bathe, cover your cast with 2 plastic bags. Tape the bags to your skin to keep the water out. Keep the cast out of the water so it does not get wet. If you do not have a cast, carefully wash the wound with soap and water. Dry the area and put on new, clean bandages as directed. Change your bandages when they get wet or dirty.

Physical therapy:

You may need to see a physical therapist to teach you special exercises. These exercises help improve movement and decrease pain. Physical therapy can also help improve strength and decrease your risk for loss of function.

Contact your primary healthcare provider if:

  • You have a fever.

  • Your cast gets wet or begins to smell.

  • You have more pain or swelling than you did before the cast or splint was put on.

  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Seek care immediately or call 911 if:

  • Blood soaks through your bandage.

  • Your cast breaks or gets damaged.

  • You have increased pain that does not go away with pain medicine.

  • Your toes look pale or blue, feel numb, or tingle.

  • Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.

  • You suddenly feel lightheaded and short of breath.

  • You have chest pain when you take a deep breath or cough. You cough up blood.

© 2014 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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