4 Ways To Survive The Cast

A cast is meant to hold broken bones in place until it heals. Casts help to immobilise the immediate areas around an injured joint and reduces muscular contractions, preventing further movement at the injury site. It holds the entire broken bone in the correct alignment while allowing it to heal naturally. It can either be placed to prevent surgery for minor cases or as a protective barrier after surgery depending on the seriousness of the injury. However, casts are bulky and rigid things that make movement extremely difficult. Let’s look at some ways to survive the cast.

Crutches

Your best friend throughout your time in a cast would probably be your crutches. Since movements will be severely hindered, you will definitely need assistance to move around. It is impractical to ask your family and friends to help you all the time so this is where crutches come into the picture. Crutches can help you to move around much easier and reduce dependency on your loved ones.

Wheelchair

Wheelchair is another possible means to move around in a much more comfortable method. However, wheelchairs will cause inconvenience to those around you due to the size of it and although you are more comfortable, there are more limitations to what you can do. For example, you can easily board a bus using crutches but it is impossible to board a bus that is not equipped for wheelchairs.

Elevate your legs

Prolonged periods of being in a cast can cause blood to concentrate at the injury site due to the sheer weight of it and gravity acting on it. As such, if your legs are in a cast, you should try to elevate it in a position above your heart whenever you can. Elevating above the heart will allow for proper blood circulation and promote a speedier healing process. This is especially important during your sleep whereby your feet will be in the position for at least 7 hours. Prop your legs up using multiple pillows and reduce the chances of Deep Vein Thrombosis.

Ice

Ice will help to decrease the swelling and relieve pain. However, make sure you do not cause the cast to become wet or it might start to affect the integrity of it. To prevent this from happening, place some ice inside a small plastic bag and wrap it with a towel. When possible, ice the injured region for 15 minutes every hour. This will definitely speed up healing.

Casts are bulky protective items that help to protect your injured joint or bone. It immobilises the injured part and ensures proper alignment is met during the recovery phase. As such, it will cause inconvenience to our lives and much adjustment has to be made. However, it is a crucial part of the healing process and if this step goes wrong, our joints will be affected for life.

5 side effects of hip replacement surgery

Hip replacement surgery is performed to replace a hip joint that is damaged and degraded, and is unable to perform to its intended purpose. An artificial material such as metal or ceramic is used in its place and this will relieve pain and allow patients to regain their range of motion and thus makes them able to perform things that they previously could not. Although the end results are impressive, there are side effects involved too.

Hip dislocation

Hip dislocation is a common side effect experienced by many patients post surgery. As the prosthetic used for the surgery is normally smaller than the patient’s own hip bone, the replacement hip ball tends to slip out of the socket easily. The replacement hip joint may also irritate the tissues around it, causing inflammation of the tissues and possibly degradation of the bone. Bone degradation is a serious thing and can cause pain and additional corrective surgery.

Pain

Pain is an inevitable side effect that will definitely be experienced by all. Pain will affect the patient’s ability to move about after surgery. Medication will be prescribed by the doctor to allow patients to feel more comfortable and pain will subside as time passes. However if patients experience severe or prolonged pain, they should seek care from a medical professional.
Deep vein thrombosis
Deep vein thrombosis or DVT is a common side effect post surgery which is accompanied by swelling and discolouration of the skin. DVT occurs due to poor blood circulation throughout the leg, causing blood clots. If the blood clot flows through the blood and enters the lungs, it can be life threatening and will cause breathing difficulties that may be fatal.

Infection

One very rare side effect is infection. Bacteria could get into the prosthetic joint area and trigger a body reaction, causing infection. However this is rare due to the disinfected environment in the operating theatre but it could still happen due to human errors. If patients experience high fever of more than 38 degrees Celsius accompanied by chills and discharging of body fluids, they must seek medical help immediately.

Nerve injury

Injuries to the nerves are uncommon due to hip replacement surgery. The nerves around the surgical site could be accidentally injured and/or damaged during surgery and this will cause numbness and a tingling sensation. In most cases, they are only temporary and patients will fully regain their feeling over a period of time. In more severe cases, they can be permanent and patients will never have a sensation at the injury site again.

Most side effects are only temporary and will go away with time. Most of them are not serious and will only cause some slight discomfort to the patient. However, there are rare and more serious side effects that could possibly occur. Patients are thus advised to speak to their surgeon and fully understand all the risks and side effects before deciding to undergo the surgery.