• Cindy

7th Broken Bone is the Charm

On December 9, 2009, 12 year old Madi suffered her 7th broken bone. Madi, who lives in Utah in the US, was playing in a Futsol game. This, apparently, is a soccer variant played on a hard indoor court. She snapped her tibia and fibula in half.


Madi's leg in the ER hours after the injury


According to her mother " It took 5 people to get her off the court and into the car. She was in so much pain and any slight movement sent her into orbit! We should have called for an ambulance because it made it more painful to carry her."


What a picture this is! Shock. Horror. Pain. Disbelief. And once you read the full blog, you will realize that no matter how bad things seem, they can always get worse

Once at the hospital, Madi was pumped with Morphine which had little impact on her pain level. X-rays revealed Madi had broken her fibula near the knee and her tibia just above the ankle. Surgery was almost certainly in Madi's future.


To her parents's surprise, Madi's leg was set, she was placed in a splint, and sent home that evening.



Madi's grandmother doing her hair the morning after the injury

The following morning, things seemed to be normal. Madi, her leg splinted, was able to change clothes and let relatives bathe her. A doctor's appointment was scheduled for the following morning to learn details of the surgery.


I should point out at this point that little Madi was a broken bone veteran. At the ripe old age of 12, Madi had already broken both femurs, both feet, an arm, and a wrist. So this girl knew what pain was about.


A little after 2:00 PM the day after the injury, Madi fell trying to get out of bed. The broken bones shifted under the splint and Madi was once again in agony.



Madi before the decision was made to transfer her to a larger hospital for immediate surgery

Madi was rushed to the emergency room where x-rays revealed the tibia fracture had displaced. A decision was made to transfer poor Madi to Primary Children's Hospital in Salt Lake City.


Madi being loaded on to the ambulance for transport to Primary Children's Hospital

This is a girl who is ready to be fixed. After 48 of near constant pain, Madi was ready for surgery

Another side note. Madi's family are Mormon. For those of you unfamiliar with Mormons, they are a small sect of quasi Christians who believe there is a Part 2 to the Jesus story told in the traditional Christian bible. I plan to have a Mormon blog here in a few weeks since Mormon's seem to break bones at a higher rate than other religious sects.


Throughout the ordeal of Madi's broken leg, Madi's Mormon family and friends prayed constantly for her well being. And the bishops of their Mormon sect visited Madi several times throughout the girl's ordeal.


Mormon Bishop's visiting the poor girl before her expected surgery

Now, I consider myself more spiritual than religious. As a teen, I rebelled against the Catholic church I was raised in by drinking altar wine with my altar boy boyfriend at the time, having sex with him in a church confessional, and finishing the day of smoking weed while laying naked in a church pew.


But somehow the Mormon community came through for little Madi. The doctors at Primary Children's managed to set the girl's leg without surgery. Madi emerged from the conscious sedation session with a lifelong memory of the pain and agony associated with her leg being set and a bright orange cast.


Madi in the cast room after her painful reduction session

Madi waiting to go home with her bright orange cast. She does not seem to have the Christmas spirit yet.

Now, you would think that things could only get better at this point for Madi. But not for the poor girl who had broken 7 bones by the age of twelve. When she returned in mid January to have her cast changed, things initially looked great. Her orange cast was removed and Madi looked forward to having a shorter cast put on.



This girl is ready to have the full leg cast removed. Note the matching orange nail polish

Madi was terrified by the saw in spite of having numerous casts applied and removed before her broken leg

One happy camper here. Madi thinks getting her next cast will be a piece of cake. Little did the poor girl know what was going to happen next

Madi was one happy girl to be out of the full leg cast. Then, disaster struck. Here is her mother's account of what happened next:


"The bottom part of her leg has lost blood flow and they decided at this point they needed to reset her leg in another direction. So, without any pain meds they continued to re-set her leg, and it took about an hour to get it to where they wanted.. Madi was in so much pain and I was having a heck of a time watching and hearing this. They ended up having her lay on her tummy and casting her that way.. The expression on her face below shows her pain and is a completely different face of the Madi before the re setting."


For those mathematicians reading this blog, this was the third horrifically painful fracture reduction session Madi endured with this break.


Madi after her painful 1 hour re-setting session without pain medication. The orange toes don't go with the blue cast

Fortunately, all of Cindy's cast blogs have a happy ending. By mid March, Madi was out of the cast and into a boot. Madi required physical therapy for 12 weeks before she was allowed to resume her soccer career.



Madi sporting the boot she wore for 3 months after the blue cast was removed

Today, Madi is 22 years old. She is married and a professional photographer. She graduated from Utah Valley University and has not played soccer in years. Hopefully, her history of breaking bones is behind her.


Current day Madi.

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