Cast removal: See how it’s done, step-by-step

Cast removal Step-by-step photos

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Once you know how a cast saw works without cutting you, you may want to see what the process actually looks like.

Since we have been there and done that, we have these 11 step-by-step pictures taken while getting a fiberglass cast removed.
Cast away: Step-by-step cast removal photos

After an injury to the left ankle broke the fibula in two places (a lateral malleolus fracture), a hard cast was required to help the bone heal. Splints were used for the first 2.5 weeks, then the fiberglass cast being removed below was in place for four weeks.

Step 1: Beginning to cut with a cast saw, starting on the outer side at the top

Step-by-step cast removal photo (2)

Step 2: Continuing to cut the cast down the back of the calf

Step-by-step cast removal photo (3)

Step 3: Moving the cast saw to cut along the outer edge of the foot

Step-by-step cast removal photo (4)

Step 4: Starting the second cut, on the inside of the leg at the top. They were getting some depth on the saw, and some heat was felt

Step-by-step cast removal photo (5)

Step 5: After cutting the cast along the inside of the ankle, they began the final cut, starting on the inside of the foot at the toes

Step-by-step cast removal photo (6)

Step 6: Using a cast spreader tool to separate the cast shell for removal

Step-by-step cast removal photo (7)

Step 7: Cutting the cast padding and stockinette with bandage scissors

Step-by-step cast removal photo (8)

Step 8: Cast shell is open, with the last piece of stockinette to be cut

Step-by-step cast removal photo (1)

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The end result

6-1/2 weeks after injury, and after 2-1/2 weeks in splints, and 4 weeks in a fiberglass cast, the leg with the broken ankle (on the left/bottom) has lost a lot of muscle tone, is more swollen, and there’s a lot of dry skin.

After a cast for a broken ankle

Nancy J Price

Nancy J Price

In addition to being the co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Lilyvolt, Nancy J Price was one of the two original founders of in 1999, helping turn it into one of the world's top lifestyle websites for women. More recently, she spent more than two years as the executive editor of Grateful, a Gannett/USA Today Network site. Nancy is also the founder of the Click Americana vintage & retro website. She lives in Arizona with her four kids and partner, novelist Daniel Price.

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