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Avatar universal

Fractured Cuboid Bone in Left Foot

Right before the memorial day holiday I got up from the desk in our home office and noticed my left foot was really hurting me. I was limping around as I got the kids to bed and thought perhaps when I was sitting at the desk that maybe I overstretched the foot and it needed to just calm down. By 4AM the next morning I made the decision to go to the ER as it was hurting that bad.

Because I had not recalled falling or tripping, no xray was done and I was told I had plantar fascitis (sp?). They allowed me to leave with crutches and pain meds.

I did a follow up with my primary the next morning - he sent me for an xray to be sure nothing was broken. The report he got back from the xray showed nothing, or so it said.

I stayed home from work for 2 days thinking that between those 2 days and the long holiday weekend, I would be much better the following week. However, the pain continued and I noticed after work the next Tuesday my foot was very swollen.

Our onsite nurse at work suggested asking my primary for an MRI to ensure there was no break in the foot or ankle. I called and scheduled the MRI for 6/4 - almost 2 weeks since the initial symptoms had started.

Meantime, I wore a walking shoe we had left over from other toe injuries that the hospital had given us mainly because my foot hurt more when it was in a sneaker and the walking shoe just had soft velcro closures.

I got the MRI done and went to work. The primary called me around lunchtime that day and said the MRI showed a cuboid bone fracture in the left foot and explained that this bone was right where I was indicating alot of pain.

He also wondered how I broke that particular bone and suggested that it could have been a stress fracture where you do an activity every day and at some point the bone cannot handle the activity and breaks. Also, I had given birth to my 2nd child a few months prior and was very anemic the entire pregnancy - they thought this could have been a contributor as well to the bone breaking.

He told me to see an ortho Dr. that day as I needed the foot stabilized in a cast or cam walker.

My regular orth Dr. was in the process of relocating his offices to a new space (he had done 2 knee surgeries on me) so I was forced to call any ortho Dr. in the area. The only Dr. who could see me that day was a podiatrist who worked within a large group of ortho Dr's in the area - my primary assured me that a podiatrist was just as good to address the break so I made the appt.

I found out once I was there that the break was actually seen on the xray from 2 weeks prior - apparently whoever read the xray and did the report overlooked it so in essence, I had been walking around with a broken foot for 2 weeks. The MRI simply confirmed everything.

I was put in a cam walker and told it was 6 weeks minimum to recover. I was instructed to only take it off to bathe and the rest of the time I had to wear it.

As much as I was relieved to find an answer to the issue with the foot, I knew this was going to be hard as I just had my 2nd child the end of 2006 and my husband works 2 jobs. They did not instruct me to stay out of work - they simply said rest it as much as possible.

I elected to stay out of work for 2 days and then return after that in an effort to get the swelling down.

I am currently in week 3-4 and the foot started really hurting me last week and continues to hurt just as much as it did when this first happened. In addition, my 2nd toe is numb and it is not from over tightening the cam walker - I have been very diligent in ensuring the boot is not on too tight.

I did notice with the 2nd toe that when I press on the top of the toe in the corner by the nail, I get alot of pain and wondered if maybe it was an ingrown nail - never had one so I am unsure how it would feel and can an ingrown nail cause numbness?

Needless to say I caved as the pain became more then just a distraction and I first called my ortho and found he was out on vacation this week for the 4th of July holiday. So I called the podiatrist office and bumped up my 5 week follow up appt. to this week (Thurs) as I felt that having pain at this point wasn't normal........my fear is that the foot is not healing for some reason and they will either continue with this boot for more time, put a permanent cast on me or say only surgery can repair.......the last 2 options I really have no inclination to do as it would severly incapacitate me in being able to care for the children.

My questions:

1. should a fractured cuboid hurt this much at the 1/2 way mark (3-4 weeks in cam walker)?

2. what am I looking at realistically if it appears that the break is still there and not healing?

I have found limited information on this particular break in this particular bone and am very frustrated in having to wear a boot almost 24/7 and now it hurts more then when I first injured it.

At home I have 4 floors in the house so everything is stairs - by the end of the day it feels like I am lugging around 50 extra pounds on the leg when I trudge up and down the steps.

Any information reg my partiicular injury and what the possible reasons for the pain to start up again would be appreciated as well as what I am realistically looking at if this week's xray shows it is not healing.

Thank you in advance.
174 Responses
Avatar universal
I'm interested to know if you've gotten any response to your post??
I also have a broken cuboid bone. About 4 weeks ago, i stepped down (very hard)  on a 6" spike in an overgrown field and crushed part of my cuboid bone. I also went to a podiatrist who put me in a boot/cast and told me to stay off of it...or try to keep it elevated.
I'm trying to stay off of it......but life gets busy.
It's been a month and it's still swollen and painful.
I was told that it would take 8 weeks (approx.) to heal but it seems odd that it still hurts and swells as much as it does.

Any advice or information would be appreciated.
Thanks!
Avatar universal
I too have a fractured cuboid bone. My dog ran into me full speed.I'm going into week 5(wearing a boot and non-weight bearing) and I too am feeling more pain than before! I've been told 6 weeks, but I'm a little worried about whether or not it's healing.

I understand that there isn't much of a blood supply in that area, so avascular necrosis is a concern. And it is always swollen by the end of the day.

Any thoughts on this?
Avatar universal
I'm so frustrated too!!  I'm 8 weeks fractured cuboid-in a walking boot and had been on crutches but just can't handle them anymore!  I still cannot tolerate walking much distance without a lot of pain and I"m still having shooting pain through my foot.  the doctor says the fracture is minor so why does it still hurt so bad??  I've wondered if the boot is what is making it hurt so much.  Does it do more damage to walk on it if it's not completely healed?  any thoughts?
Avatar universal
I to am in the same boat as the rest of you. I hurt my left ankle/cuboid in mid June. i was chasing my 2 1/2 year old son and dog out of the hose and down my garage stairs and missed the bottom step. My wife saw the whole thing and knew righ taway that it was ugly. I got up and walked it off for 2 weeks it was bothering me so it went to see an OS and x-rays were negative go figure! I was given a air cast and was told it was a bone bruise and moderate sprain. 2 more weeks passed and the pain turned it to a burning pain so I went back and aan MRI was performed and low and behold it showed up like a sore thumb a stress fracture to the cuboid bone on my left ankle. I was given the option of a Cam or a cast and I opted for the cast I work a job that I'm on my feet 10 hours a day and I want it to heal correctly if I had a cam I would be walking on it for sure. I was told 5 weeks in this cast. I'm 2 weeks in ans handeling life okay but my cast has loosened up on me and when the joint moves in the cast I can feel the point where the injury is. I have to call him back and maybe have it re casted. He told me once the injury was discovered that it's a 6-8 week recovery buy I'm sure I didn't help things along by walking on it for a month before it was imobilized. I do have some swelling from time to time if I don't elevate it long enough. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. any one else out there that can sare a realistic time table for this to heal?
Avatar universal
I am in a cast for a cuboid fracture.  I fell on an oil spill June 23.  I was told a sprain and after 4 weeks of pain in a boot, they did an MRI.  Like the rest of you, sure enough there was a fracture.  Now I am in a cast.  I go back this Thurs. to have the cast taken off and hoping they don't put me another one, as I still have pain.
Avatar universal
I'm almost 3 weeks in now and I still have pain I'm going to call my OS tomorrow to see if I can get in and have a tighter cast put on. Here is the answer I got back from an ask the expert web site.

http://www.allexperts.com/user.cgi?m=6&catID=984&qID=4650692
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