Sunday, July 3, 2022
NewsHealthTeen who begged docs to 'chop his leg off' following freak sledging...

Teen who begged docs to ‘chop his leg off’ following freak sledging accident has learned to walk again

A TEEN who begged doctors to ‘chop his leg off’ following a freak sledging accident has learned to walk again.

Ben Thompson collided with a metal pole after sliding down a hill on a plastic sledge
in Burton Upon Trent, Staffordshire, in November last year.

The brutal crash saw the 19-year-old snap his shin which then punctured his muscle and artery before completely destroying the nerve system in his leg.

Ben waited two hours for paramedics to arrive and was then rushed in for emergency surgery.

Before a second operation days later, Ben was told that his leg may not be salvageable and that he could wake up from surgery as an amputee.

Thankfully doctors managed to save his leg, however the former warehouse operative was told by medics that he would be disabled for life and may never walk again.

After surgery, Ben’s muscle began expanding, leaving him in need of a skin graft on either side of his calf with doctors taking skin from his thigh.

At times the pain got so much for Ben that he repeatedly asked doctors to amputate his leg.

However, a change of medication helped Ben with the pain so he fought on and slowly began exercising his leg again.

Ben Thompson injured
Ben was injured after colliding with a metal post while sledging. Credit: Ben Thompson

Now, five months on from the accident and despite his foot not healing further, Ben has learned to walk again.

Incredible video shows the progress he has made in such a short space of time.

Speaking today, Ben said: “I went sledging on a hill in Shobnall Park with somebody else.

“We didn’t see the skinny metal pole ahead.

“At the last minute the other rider was able to get off but I wasn’t so lucky.

“I put my foot out to stop the impact and the pole has smacked the bottom of my foot.

“This snapped my bone which then stabbed through my muscle and snapping both my artery and my nerve system from the shin down.

“My muscle was rapidly expanding. The ambulance arrived two hours later, putting me on a stretcher and taking me to Burton Hospital. I then waited to be transferred to Stoke hospital.”

Ben in a hospital bed
Ben required extensive surgery as his bone broke the skin. Credit: Ben Thompson

He continued: “After arriving at Stoke they did my first surgery by putting a metal contraption which held my leg in place.

“My second surgery they told me my leg probably wasn’t going to make it and I would wake up with or without a leg.

“I had also caught Covid. My leg survived the surgery but they said I’d be disabled for the rest of my life.

“I was in hospital for three weeks in constant pain and no sign of recovery.

“Around two months later the doctors said I’d still be disabled and they couldn’t see much sign of movement.

“I’m also on permanent medication for the rest of my life. Walking is very hard for me and even five months later my foot hasn’t healed any better, but I’m learning to live with it and make adjustments.

Ben required hospital treatment for his leg injury
Ben required extensiv e physiotherapy to walk on his leg. Credit: Ben Thompson

“Because they hadn’t given me the right medication I was in complete agony and was begging them to chop it off.

“I was very close to going through with it but decided not to because I didn’t want to give up.

“Learning to walk was very hard because not only could I not feel my leg but I had been lying down non stop for over a month so my leg muscle was very weak.

“I had a big heavy boot to begin with and a pair of crutches but would still struggle to walk anywhere.

“I would practise in my bedroom and exercise my muscles. Once I got my foot brace my foot was a lot easier to move around.

“I was very determined to get better and in a few more months I was able to move around my house.”

Ben has also documented his journeys on social media where viewers have wished him a speedy recovery.

One viewer said: “I can’t believe how traumatic this must have been for you! I hope you’ve recovered/are recovering well.”

Another wrote: “Oh my god that looks so painful, you’re very strong.”

A third commented: “Oh my, I hope you’re okay. Wishing you a speedy recovery.”

While another said: “You’re doing amazing, keep going.”

Related Stories