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Boot top fracture - how can i avoid?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
Hi know this was discussed a while back and i have read it but just before xmas i broke both my legs quite badly at the top of my boots. I basically had to much speed and cleared the landing of a jump. Looking at the video it just didnt look like it should of happened but i landed leaning back wards slightly and both legs snapped over the back of the boot and my bindings didnt release. I have landed jumps before awkwardly and never had any problems. Unfortunatley i am unsure of my DIN settings which would obviously be useful to know and i can't check them as they are not here. I was skiing rossignol scratch sprayer bc's with rossignol axial bindings (done up quite tightly) and i had a 2 day old pair of 2010 salomon impact 8's.

What i want to know is is the equipment to blame as i am concerned about doing it again. I have seen loads of people screw jumps up like this and be fine. I was told if i had freestyle skis it wouldn't have happened because they would have had more spring or something. Should i avoid all jumps in the boots i have and just use freestyle equipment for jumping or would this have happened regardless of what i was using?
I ski only a couple of weeks a year so dont want to have several sets of boots and skis for different skis so any advice would be cool

Cheers
post #2 of 20
What bones did you break?  What kind of fracture (splitting of the bones or a full break across)?

If it was both fibulas and ONLY the fibs, that's a different scenario than if you also broke both tibias.  Fibs can break pretty easily whereas it normally takes a LOT of force to break a tibia.

In either case, I wouldn't necessarily assume it was a binding failure.  Most bindings really aren't designed to release straight upward at the toe, which is the kind of release you would need if you landed hard on a flat surface with your weight back. 

Sorry for your injury and I hope your recovery is going well.
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
I liiterally snapped both legs in half. Left leg was a single fib fracture and a double tibia open fracture. Right leg was a single fibula fracture double tibia fracture. As far as i am aware they were not spiral or anything. Looking at the x rays it would appear that the fractures started on the front of the tibia below the boot surface and then propegated upwards and backwards and finally snapping on the back of the boot with the fibula breaking just above that.
I have surgery in about 10 hours to remove the top screw, should be walking on crutches in a few days i hope. Surgeon reckons i should be walking unaided in a few weeks.
post #4 of 20
 Ouch... sounds like you landed real hard on your tails.. I gave up jumping unless necessary a while back.. If you want to ski into your old age you want to cut back on that high impact stuff.. good luck with your recovery.
post #5 of 20
Sorry to hear about your injury.  All the best for your recovery.

Sounds like an upwards release would may have saved the situation.  Off the top of my head, Rossi Axials with a max DIN of 12 or 14 (Axial 120 or 140) will release upwards at the toe.  Anything above 14 won't - they're only designed to release laterally.
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
They are axial 120's. It was a very high stess impact and my weight was over the tails. I don't really know much about bindings, should these bindings have release at the toe then before my legs gave way?
post #7 of 20
 those look will only release upward and to the sides not straight up and down. curious to see the tape...
post #8 of 20
Thread Starter 
Ill put the video on you tube at some point and post a link to that and some x ray photos
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 
Here are some pictures of the breaks. Hope they work...

Boots.jpg
X ray with boots still on. Left leg can clearly see bend in bone

Left 1.jpg
Left leg - OPEN fracture of tibia, single fib fracture

Left 2.jpg
Left leg again
Left 3.jpg
Left leg IM rod 3 screws

Right 1.jpg
Right leg double tibia fracture, single fib

Right 2.jpg
Right again

Right 3.jpg
Right IM rod 3 screws
post #10 of 20
HOLY $^@#!

Did they happen to check your bone mineral density? 
Feel better soon.
post #11 of 20
Thread Starter 
Pretty nasty isn't it. I've never had a serious injury or break then i go and smash all the bones in my lower legs!

I have no idea if they checked my bone mineral density. The accident happened in France so all my surgery and recovery was done there and my knowledge of french is poor so for the 10 days i was there i didn't have a clue what was going on what they were doing. It was awful! Getting back on my feet now slowly which is suprising. Hope i can ski next xmas!
post #12 of 20
My god.  Reading this thread made me sick.  What kind of lasting effect is expected from the injury?
post #13 of 20
Very few bindings are designed to release upward.  Markers with the biometric release toe are a notable exception.  This is a bit different than the mass-produced lower DIN Biotech bindings.   It might also be possible to reduce boot leverage by removing the spoiler on the back of the boot. 

Very sorry to see this kind of injury in any athlete, and you will need a lot of determination to rehab and get back mentally to your skiing.   I wish you much luck and hope you will stick around and keep us informed of your progress.
Edited by Cirquerider - 2/16/10 at 7:39am
post #14 of 20
Blummin' hummers! That looks bad! Unlucky to do both at the same time.

I know nothing about bindings and that but I play rugby and have seen a number of breaks like this (not on me, although I have broken things) and the biggest hurdle is usually the mental one. Normally the bones come back stronger. And I would say, get the pins/screws out if you have the option. They are normally the weak point when it comes to doing these activities again. Your bones have some bend in them but the pins don't. Causing cracks and breaks if there is any force against them.

Just to reassure you, a pal of mine Chev Walker plays pro rugby league. Search him on You Tube and see his break. It was horried. He is now up and in light running and is expected to play again in next couple of months, he only got the injury about September time too.
post #15 of 20

o my, very unfortunate. First, lower leg fracture has always been a concern for me (among many other ski injuries). Generally, when a skier apply stress to the bones, micro fractures happen and bone heals stronger and hardens. This process requires years and years of leg banging... This would lead me to say something like this is why beginners need soft boots. BUT most boots do not give you the needed backwards flex in this situation. So my conclusion is that you landed backseat with a large amout of force. This force, leveraged over the boot puts EXTREME pressure on your bone which then simply snapped. Not sure what can be done here other than pulling your body forward on the air as to avoid a dangerous backseat landing. I would think that your skis would slip out sideways, causing you to crash and/or binding release. Im pretty sure this is going to happen 99% of the time. However, its possible to land straight backseat and tip backwards over your boots. ouch...

post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by 26jc01 View Post

The accident happened in France so all my surgery and recovery was done there and my knowledge of french is poor so for the 10 days i was there i didn't have a clue what was going on what they were doing. It was awful! Getting back on my feet now slowly which is suprising. Hope i can ski next xmas!

How does that work out with insurance? Did you buy travel insurance? Do you need to submit all the bills to your US insurance company? Too many people have trouble getting on with their recovery beause they need to deal with insurance headaches.

And I would ask you orthopedist here about bone density just in case this indicates a possible underlying problem.
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
 

How does that work out with insurance? Did you buy travel insurance? Do you need to submit all the bills to your US insurance company? Too many people have trouble getting on with their recovery beause they need to deal with insurance headaches.

And I would ask you orthopedist here about bone density just in case this indicates a possible underlying problem.
I'm british so the whole insurance process wasen't to much of a headache. My Euroepean health card covered part of the costs and i also took out a seperate travel insurance before my ski trip. When the accident happened i had all my documents in my bag so within minutes of the accident i was on the phone setting up a case. They were pretty good and sorted everything out with the various medical centres, ski patrol etc. My only issue was the fact that they would not give me any pain killers of any kind until they knew i could pay for it, it took almost an hour and a half before i had any pain releif and that was only after me pleading with them and my mate having to run up to the pharmacy and buy replacement morphine.  When i eventually got morphine they only gave me a small amount as well before removing my boots which was agony but at the end of the day they didnt cut any of my brand new gear of which was cool. Once back to the UK i have private health insurance too so all costs have been covered.

A lot of people have asked if i will ever want to ski again and my answer everytime is YES. I don't know if this is a good thing or a bad thing but this accident has only made me want to ski more and more. I cannot wait to get back on my skis and would go tomorrow if i could. Iam aiming to get back on the slopes next christmas and then maybe start hitting some jumps around next easter if all goes well. My surgeon hasen't really given me a timescale to get back skiing but has said i should be able to surf this summer and maybe kitesurf towards the end of it. I am going to get my self a racing bike to build my leg muscles back up over the summer and get strong and fit again.
I am walking around on crutches now, going out, going to university etc and around the house i am even walking a little bit without crutches which i am so suprised about. If someone had told me back in December i would be back on my feet in February i would have laughed. The top screws ( ones in my knees )were removed 2 weeks ago allowing the bones to move a bit on the rods and my legs to support my weight rather then just the metal.
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
I forgot to ask this:

My legs have always pointed outwards a bit and i have pretty flexible ankles but i have noticed my right leg is healing pointing outwards a little more then my left. People have told me after a break this happens quite a lot and shouldnt effect me too much but then i thought that it might have some effect on my skiing??? Will it? I don't want to have to take up boarding!!
post #19 of 20
Tough luck on your accident. Get well fast.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Jorge Williamson View Post

Blummin' hummers! That looks bad! Unlucky to do both at the same time.

I know nothing about bindings and that but I play rugby and have seen a number of breaks like this (not on me, although I have broken things) and the biggest hurdle is usually the mental one. Normally the bones come back stronger. And I would say, get the pins/screws out if you have the option. They are normally the weak point when it comes to doing these activities again. Your bones have some bend in them but the pins don't. Causing cracks and breaks if there is any force against them.

Just to reassure you, a pal of mine Chev Walker plays pro rugby league. Search him on You Tube and see his break. It was horried. He is now up and in light running and is expected to play again in next couple of months, he only got the injury about September time too.

I agree to have the hardware removed if and when possible as almost all insurers will consider hardware as a reason to exclude the affected parts of the body. I'm with Anthem because they don't exclude my knees due to the hardware left from ACL recovery. Edit: I missed the part about being British, so this only applies to us privately insured blokes. Although I haven't experienced any friends (numerous) with hardware have issues with weakness from hardware, a subsequent injury can be complicated by the presence of hardware.

I empathize with you spending 10 days in a foreign land unable to converse with your care providers. I spent 2 weeks in Italy stabilizing from a broken back before being flown back to the US. I had English speaking visitors, but the docs spoke mostly German and/or Italian. Root canals a couple hours after the accident while under heavy sedation by a dentist that spoke fractured English reminds me (after the fact, fortunately) of Marathon Man (Is it safe?)

This was my means of communication with the staff:

hungry-thirsty-pain-urinate-wc.jpg
post #20 of 20
Jesus! That's just horrific. Glad it happened in Euroland and not the US. Even with good health insurance you'd have a significant amount of out of pocket and tons of paperwork. Still sorting out my daughter's paperwork after 12 months.

I am trying to figure out the dynamics of this happening. I hear the others on the front toe not releasing upwards but I would think that you body would just rotate back until you did the back/head slap with the knees and waist being the pivot point and your back being on the same plane as your skis.

So sorry to hear about your injury.  Heal fast!
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