Ruben Lenten under the weather

Ruben Lenten under the weather, Pilon Fracture, Trauma Surgery, Doctor Christian Wilches

I’m sad to meet one of my idols under these circumstances, but happy to help him get back on the water as soon as possible.

I’ve been kitesurfing for many years now, and have been following Ruben Lenten’s crazy stunts and tricks ever since I started. So when I heard he got injured in Barcelona, my hometown, I wanted to do everything I could to help him out.

As an orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist I’ve dealt with injuries like Ruben’s many times, and I know it is very important to act fast and correctly in the first hours as much as in the definite treatment.

Ruben Lenten’s Tibial Fracture

The treatment

As a high energy injury, we can’t asses the soft tissue damage until at least 48 hours have passed, which is why we must act carefully and initially avoid major surgery and its complications.

The first stage of the treatment is to get the ankle joint back in place and immobilize the leg as much as possible. The best way to achieve this is with joint bridging external fixation.

Joint Bridging External fixation – Stryker Hoffmann 3

We successfully performed this procedure only a few hours after the injury and Ruben is now recovering without many problems. Unfortunately, he is under quite a bit of pain, which is normal due to the injury and swelling.

The next stage will be the definitive surgery, which is a plate osteosynthesis (fixing the bones in place).

We can do this as soon as the soft tissues heal, which is normally within 7 – 10 days.

We will carefully put the bone “puzzle” back together and hold it in place with bone graft and a titanium plate through a minimally invasive procedure, trying to protect the soft tissues as much as possible.

Stryker AxSOS-tibia plate_Dr Christian Wilches_Ruben Lenten Surgery
Stryker AxSOS Tibia Plating System

The future

Even though this is a major injury that requires two surgeries and physical therapy, doing a proper recovery he might be able to be back on the water in only a few months.

His attitude from the beginning has been excellent and he’s 100% positive and committed to his healing process. In my experience, this is as important as the surgery itself.

Hopefully we will see these inspiring megaloops again soon!

I know our kite loops don’t look like his, but they sure as hell feel like it.

*Amazing photo courtesy of Ozone Kites.