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broken tibia and fibula

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    Posted: Jul 17 2013 at 10:15pm
Our user asked: "I have a spiral fracture of the left lower tibia which has been plated and screwed and a break in the fibula near the top which has not had surgery. There is a glassfibre cast from about 2" below the knee to the toes. I cannot weight bear for 6 weeks followed by gentle rehab. I am concerned that I will lose muscle tone in that time so I am wondering if there are any exercises that I can do to maintain strength and flexibility without damaging or stressing the broken areas or compromising recovery. I am a fit 63 year old male just finished a 2 week walking vacation in Italy where we were easily doing 10 miles with 2500 feet elevation. This injury was done on a much simpler path! Thank you."

Ask a PT Response: "Unfortunately there isn't too much you can do while in the cast. You might be able to perform some isometric contractions where you consciouslsy activate your muscles to minimize atrophy and loss of tone. You definitely won't be able to work on flexibility while in the cast. Given that you were healthy and active prior to your injury, I'd anticipate your recovery should be quicker compared to a sedentary individual. Best of luck with your recovery."
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