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I'm the biggest idiot on the planet - my son broke his leg today

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
My 5 year old completely fractured his Tibia today at Copper (right at the boot top). He was riding Salomon mini grom snowblades (60cm) without releasable bindings. :

Please give me my lashings because I must pay penance for my sin. I knew that these things posed a higher degree of risk, but I was burying my head in the sand. What's killing me is that this was the LAST day he was going to be on these things - he's getting brand new Elan Spidy skis with releasable Tyrolia bindings on them for Christmas.

Of course now he's made the comments that he never wants to ski again. He was an incredible trooper and dealt with some serious pain levels. The Copper staff was phenomenal and I was really impressed with their operation. They took great care of my kid.

I'm one parent who is definitely down in the dumps.
post #2 of 28
I was 11 when I spiraled my tibia and fibula. It was a mess. MUCH pain, and 3 months in a cast, another 3 1/2 months to fully recover. My parents bought me crap for gear which led to my fracture.

They gave me better gear the next year. I still love them.

Don't beat yourself up (fat chance). You're still a good parent.
post #3 of 28
I feel for you.

I once let my baby daughter fall into a hot tub. Although, being right there, I grabbed her out very quickly, she got enough water into her lungs that she didn't want to go near a pool for about a year. She now has her Bronze Cross and can swim for miles. Give it time.

Pobodies Nerfect.
post #4 of 28
Ouch, for BOTH of you!

Okay, done deal, let's get on with life: LOTS of TLC, no ski talk for awhile, and start the one-legged races, cast drawing, crutch-fighting, etc. Time is the greatest healer.

Cheer up!
post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Noodler
Of course now he's made the comments that he never wants to ski again. He was an incredible trooper and dealt with some serious pain levels.
I'm one parent who is definitely down in the dumps.
Soooooo sorry to hear about your little guy! No lashes to offer, but only a small anecdote to maybe ease your mind. My ex broke both of his legs when he was 5 or 6. Doc said he'd never walk again let alone ski. His mom still won't talk about the accident, must have been pretty traumatic for her. Happy endings all around...bones mended (not real pretty but they mended) and with the support of his siblings (read: taunting!!) he started skiing again...still skis today. Give it time...kids are remarkably resilient.
post #6 of 28
Don't beat yourself up too bad. Those skis are only 2-feet long and are not releasable because they usually don't get so caught up in a twisting fall. Even with bindings, catching an outside edge at slow speed is risky. Try to find ways to keep your son engaged and feeling positive about skiing. I wish you both the best and a successful return to skiing together.
post #7 of 28
Sorry to hear. kids at this age are infinitely forgiving and respond to love & TLC. Give him plenty of your time doing what-ever he wants. Don't talk about skiing until next year and make it his option.

Tell him you know he will be as good as new, and he will!

Cheers,

Barrettscv
post #8 of 28
Noodler, tibial fractures are common in little ones. They generally heal well and leave no permanent disability. My daughter suffered a spiral fracture of her tibia at age 4 while skating on a pair of Children's Fisher Price "Safety" Roller blades. She got back on blades the next year and is out blading right now even as I type this. (Birthday party with friends at the Roller Rink). She is 13 now and barely remembers the break.

Don't beat yourself up too much. Kids get hurt. It hurts us, but we accept it. Ski Blades don't release because they are short enough to supposedly not "need to", but anything can happen. My daughter's rollerblades were no longer than her feet and she still got hurt. Cheer up. You will both get through this.
post #9 of 28
My first ski school boss, a guy who had been on the French national team with Jean Claude, told me the first time he got on skis at age 5, he slid down the meadow outside his home and ran into a fence, breaking both legs. In the rest of his competitive skiing career, he broke a leg four more times, I believe, usually just before he would have been among the racers representing France in some event.

The impetus for him getting back on skis after his first experience, of course, was that everyone in the family skied.

I'll bet your trooper will want to join you at a ski hill again, just maybe not in time to make use of the equipment you bought for this Christmas.
post #10 of 28
Once he gets up and around he is going to be thrilled that his friends are jealous (all the attention) plus he get this cool new toy: crutches!

I had an arm in a cast for three months (read: all summer) due to a really bad break roller skating when I was like 10. Never phased me.


kiersten
post #11 of 28
Have the Doctor plaster a DIN toe and heel on his cast!. Kids are resilient, no worries. Past that don't beat yourself up too much.
post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Pugliese
Have the Doctor plaster a DIN toe and heel on his cast!.


You did get him at least a fiberglass cast, yes?
post #13 of 28
sorry to hear this- but I know a great bed time story- just tell him about Herman Maier- how he couldnt wait to get back on his skis! Or Phil Mahre one year after breaking his leg he won an olympic medal then 4 years later a gold medal.

Next year he will have forgotten all about it
post #14 of 28
Each of us has countless times skirted disaster for less than brilliant decisions through nothing more than dumb luck and/or the grace of god. But sometimes the dice just rolls our number, and we don't get that free pass. It hurts more when the victim of our bad choice is a loved one then it does when we personally suffer the consequences.

But hey, we all make those bad choices along the way, it just goes with the territory of being imperfect human beings. Best we can do is use it as a wake of call to learn from, then move on. Somewhere between denial and self abuse lies the best means of negotiating these things.
post #15 of 28

noodler

I am so sorry to hear about your boy's misfortune. Hope he is comfortable and wish him speedy recovery.

Bz
post #16 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks to all of you for your kind words and wisdom.

Tomorrow the docs will remove his temporary "splint" (a real fiberglass cast that was split down its length to allow for expansion in case of swelling) and replace it with a permanent cast.

He was still in quite a bit of pain today (even with Tylenol Codeine) and really doesn't want to even let us move him. However his spirits seem to be up and he doesn't seem to be holding the accident against "good old" dad so I'm feeling a little better.

I ordered a Tyrolia SL 4.5 Railflex Lite binding today to retrofit the Salomon mini groms with releasable bindings. I have 2 more sons that will be learning to ski - and I've learned my lesson.

Hopefully my experience with non-releasable bindings will help save someone else from a broken limb. I know that people still get injured even on releasable bindings, but I'm fairly certain that my son's injury could have been avoided if his bindings would have released. Please pass along my story to anyone you know that still rides non-releasables.
post #17 of 28
I'm glad I don't have to prescribe pain medication to children. The pain should subside in about three days.

I've had my share of broken bones, burns, cuts and bruizes, and sprains.

I don't know what kind of an effect Tylenol with codiene has on Kids, but it has almost no effect on any real pain I've ever had (unless swallowed with a fifth of Jack Danials, and that is one hell of a way to wreck your liver PDQ).

Oxycodone however does have an effect.
post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by RiDeC58
Noodler, tibial fractures are common in little ones. They generally heal well and leave no permanent disability. My daughter suffered a spiral fracture of her tibia at age 4 while skating on a pair of Children's Fisher Price "Safety" Roller blades. She got back on blades the next year and is out blading right now even as I type this. (Birthday party with friends at the Roller Rink). She is 13 now and barely remembers the break.

Don't beat yourself up too much. Kids get hurt. It hurts us, but we accept it. Ski Blades don't release because they are short enough to supposedly not "need to", but anything can happen. My daughter's rollerblades were no longer than her feet and she still got hurt. Cheer up. You will both get through this.
Words of wisdom.
post #19 of 28
Noodler- I DO prescribe pain medication to kids (that is a big part of my job), and Ghost is right about codeine. If he is not getting any relief from Tylenol with codeine, ask your MD to try hydrocodone ox oxycodone instead. They both come in pediatric (liquid) formulas. About 10% of the population (15-20% if you are African-American) either lack or are deficient in the enzyme required to convert codeine to its active form (essentially morphine), so it has no analgesic effect. I do not prescribe codeine any longer, and have excellent results in most kids with both oxycodone or hydrocodone. (start with 0.15mg/kg of oxycodone q3-4h).

Hope he is getting better really soon!
post #20 of 28
Well there you go. Get that kid some decent pain medication.
btw, I have however noticed that Benalyn with Codeine is the only cough syrup that seems to do any good for me. Mind you it's only about once every 10 years that I need to take cough medication.
post #21 of 28
I personally always tell docs I don't want codeine -- it makes me queasy and dizzy while not doing a thing for pain, which just means I am in WORSE shape than if I had nothing.
post #22 of 28

Cast Party!

Noodler,
Jane says you can be the biggest idiot on the planet, but only for today.

You may think you want me to tell you off because it will make you feel better but we all know that ...'there but for the grace of <insert philosophy here>, go I' is true to a degree.

My suggestion is to throw him a cast signing party up at Copper just to get him back to the scene of the accident fairly quickly.

Never underestimate how cool a cast can be in front of the right audience (4 yr old girls).

Jane wants to sign it and will bring the cake.

Janesmom is at Copper today with Jane. I'll call and remind them to have fun - thanks for posting - a good heads up is called for and appreciated.
post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost
I don't know what kind of an effect Tylenol with codiene has on Kids, but it has almost no effect on any real pain I've ever had (unless swallowed with a fifth of Jack Danials, and that is one hell of a way to wreck your liver PDQ).
Ghost: That's a good way to DIE!

It's not the codeine that is the real problem, it's the acetominophen.

Do a google search. You will see that the combination of acetominophen and alcohol can be fatal -- and also past performance is no indicator if the next one will kill you or not.

Even "morning after" acetominophen can kill you if you're still drunk.
post #24 of 28
Talk about nasty side-effects!

noodler, my two girls had more broken bones than they had cavities, which I attribute to good parenting: they skied (one cracked femur), played basketball (broken wrist and an ACL tear), and went to preschool with a boy who was fixated on Ninja Turtles (spiral tibial fracture).
post #25 of 28
Noodler - No worries! As has been said before, kids are extremely resilient to these types of temporary setbacks (especially at that age).

I actually fractured my tibia when I was 5 due to bindings that wouldn't release. It was pretty traumatic at the time, but I learned to love the extra attention I got and was looking forward to getting back out on skis before I knew it. The season was over before my cast came off, but I was the first one on the hill the next year. It was like it never happened.

One side benefit - before the break, my right leg was my dominant leg. However, that was the leg I broke and needed to use my left leg primarily with crutches. As a result, my left leg is now as strong (or stronger) when skiing.
post #26 of 28
Thread Starter 
So my son got his permanent cast today (finally). They decided that the set looked so good that they didn't want to mess with taking off the old cast so they just over-wrapped it with a new layer of cast material and tightened it up a bit. They said he'll be in this cast for about 3-4 weeks and then they'll put him in a below-the-knee walking cast for a few more weeks. Hopefully he'll be completely healed in about 6-7 weeks.

He's actually talking about skiing again and I'm happy about that. It'll be interesting to see what happens once he's out of the cast though - once the idea of really going back to the mountain hits him he may change his mind. I've decided to hold back on giving him his new skis until his birthday in late January (when he should be out of the cast). I'm hoping some new gear and clothing (they had to cut off his ski pants and long underwear to work on his leg) might help ease his transition back onto the mountain.

Janesdad - I showed my son pictures of Jane (from the site you posted in the other thread) and he got excited about meeting her and having Jane sign his cast. Once he gets back from Florida in January let's chat...
post #27 of 28
Glad to hear you are both on the mend. Enjoy the holidays!
post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Pugliese
Have the Doctor plaster a DIN toe and heel on his cast!. Kids are resilient, no worries. Past that don't beat yourself up too much.
Phil,

I actually know a guy who lost a lower leg in Vietnam. He has a specialised ski leg that is a metal foot with DIN Toe and Heel. All he has to do is snap into the ski and off he goes. (Yes, he is a Marine.) It was a hoot watching him stuff that leg into a snowboard boot when he gave snowboarding a try.
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