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Old 30-10-2018, 15:51   #1
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Coping with injuries while living aboard

So yesterday, I managed to break my ankle while at work. While I won't be going back to work for a while, it has raised a few challenges.
The first was getting back on the pier at low tide, high tide has the ramp being very gently sloped, low tide and it's quite steep (not conducive to being on crutches)
Interestingly, getting aboard is pretty easy, if I sit and just rotate my legs into the cockpit, the companion way not so easy either. But once below moving around is surprisingly easy (lots of hand holds and everything is close)
So I was wondering how many fellow live-aboards have had to contend with injuries while living on their boat.
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Old 30-10-2018, 17:00   #2
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

I'm not a live aboard. But, I have dislocated my shoulder while at anchor, stuck a knife through my my finger on the mooring, and fallen down a ladder in the boatyard chipping my shoulder. I still managed to work and sail on the boat. My wife has a great shot of me sailing on a stormy day with my arm in a sling. That said, be careful of your ankle and get better soon.
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Old 30-10-2018, 17:50   #3
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

While playing co-ed football I got tackled from behind by a tiny lady who absolutely destroyed me. Tore the tendons in both sides of my right foot and nicked the achilles as well to boot.

I found the hardest part was getting onto the boat (esp as it's an old boat with no open transom) and had to do what you did, hobble with crutches over to the side, sit on the side and rotate my legs over. Once inside and down the companionway the narrowness and the handholds everywhere made getting around pretty easy.

It still really sucked though.
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Old 30-10-2018, 17:59   #4
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

I'd advise you to try and find a room to rent on shore until you are healed up. I'm no doctor but all of my Winter injuries hurt me ALOT more than my Summer injuries. I chalk that up to spending time outside in the cold in New England, while the injuries were healing. Ymmv. It will get WAY more dangerous with ice on the ground, dock, boat now. You only have one chance to let this heal properly. The boat will be there when you are able to safely move around on it. Don't kid yourself into thinking that you can do this. One slip and that ankle will bother you the rest of your life.
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Old 30-10-2018, 23:44   #5
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

I think it really depends on the injury. I have done one passage with a cast on an ankle; and lived aboard with a broken ankle, as well. Not too hard to be done. The latter ankle deal, we were in a marina, not out on the hook.

When I've had surgeries, some of them, I've recovered from on the boat; others required more healing time and physical therapy before I could rejoin it.

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Old 31-10-2018, 00:53   #6
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

There are a lot of things to break in an ankle, so it’s not a single problem.

I had to bring my boat home with three fractures in my ankle, it’s amazing what you can do on your knees..

Once you are safely in a moon boot, it’s not a big issue, my main problem was you have to drive an automatic if you break your left ankle.
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Old 31-10-2018, 02:53   #7
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

We've lived aboard close to 7 years now and have had a few injuries. Torn ankle tendons, infections occasionally fish or conch.cleaning lol, Have had to deal with several surgery recoveries aboard and It often a challenge. I Will say living aboard in foreign countries the last couple years and getting hurt sick etc, we deal with many things ourself that would normaly be a trip to the Dr.s. backs heal , colds go away, wounds heal and close up. and we seem sick a lot less then when living on land.
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Old 31-10-2018, 05:23   #8
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

Quote:
Originally Posted by SV_Harbinger View Post
So I was wondering how many fellow live-aboards have had to contend with injuries while living on their boat.
Hope your break heals quickly and completely.

My wife slipped and broke a bone in her foot a couple of days into a two week tour we were doing. We were on the hook or a mooring ball the entire time and our boat had three levels plus a ladder to get to the swim platform and dinghy. She kept her foot elevated and iced when she could and soldiered on when she needed. It was harder for her to get around once we got home and she had more room.
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Old 31-10-2018, 05:25   #9
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

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Originally Posted by WanderingStar39 View Post
I'm not a live aboard. But, I have dislocated my shoulder while at anchor, stuck a knife through my my finger on the mooring, and fallen down a ladder in the boatyard chipping my shoulder.
Holy cow, star!!! (making a mental note to cancel any trips scheduled with you)
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Old 31-10-2018, 10:56   #10
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

Fell off the deck of my Pearson Triton while it was on the hard - donít ask me how - the concussion wiped the memory of the incident out of my brain.

A very minor skull fracture, a severely sprained left wrist and a very badly shattered right clavicle. Doctor counseled against surgery (collarbones are notorious for failure to fuse post surgery) and I wore a butterfly brace for almost 6 months until the bone finally healed. About a month after the incident we went on an extended cruise. I could work the arm from the elbow and wrist but was told to not extend the arm from the shoulder until xrays cleared me. I complied.

The cruise went well. I adapted. I behaved.

My right collarbone is now 1 1/2Ē shorter than my left.
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Old 31-10-2018, 11:21   #11
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

Limp, hobble, complain, repeat. Iím still recovering from knee replacement surgery. Just one knee for now. The long walk down the dock to the slip is the biggest trouble. For getting on and off from the dock or from the dinghy I just act as if Iím Captain Ahab with a whale bone leg that doesnít bend. Carefully, one leg at a time. Up with the good leg first, down with the bad leg first. Lots of hand holds.

Best wish on your recovery.
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Old 31-10-2018, 11:23   #12
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

Well thanks for everyone's well wishes, and attempting a MOB drill on the hard, that would cause a few dings lol.
I'm in my winter slip so everything is easier (except driving, as mentioned earlier manual transmissions don't work well with a bum stump, but that's what Uber is for) I have a full chill box, so I don't have any reason to have to get off the boat, until tomorrow (Dr. Appointment for workman's comp). So my big complicated plan is to just loaf around on the boat and tinker with things and give the Netflix a work out.
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Old 31-10-2018, 12:04   #13
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

I broke my left leg in 4 places December 2017, while on land, not on the boat. My surgeon who put in a titanium rod, and screws, forbid my return to the boat. I lived with my brother, (on land), for 4 months before I felt mobile enough to handle getting on/off the boat, and using the ramp at high and low tide. I was still on crutches, and continued to be on them until August 2018, then onto using a cane. I don't use any aids now, but I'm trying to not to limp, and work at regaining my strength. If you have a pool nearby, water walking is the best thing you can do for therapy.

Here's the beginning of the story, if you'd like more info: Denali Rose: Friday Funny 12-15 (Friday wasn't Funny)

BTW - a DAN evacuation was required, and they were great!
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Old 31-10-2018, 15:58   #14
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

My wife lived aboard after a total hip replacement.
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Old 31-10-2018, 17:07   #15
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Re: Coping with injuries while living aboard

Crushed little finger in windlass gypsy .... duct tape. met a surgeon in an anchorage a month later who said he could not have repaired it better but the damn thing still doesn't work.
Broke collar bone, wife set it. good as new ...... after a while
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