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I may have broken my leg! Pls help in Pontevedra!!!

senora1

Active Member
After walking 5 hard days, slogging through rain and mud my leg was very sore and I took a rest day. Feeling better I left Tui Monday and by the end of the day can hardly walk. I can’t put any weight on it, just walking using my poles and taxis 🥲
I’m in Pontevedra and can’t sleep. I need to see a doctor but. It sure how to do that in Spain. If I were in California I would go to an urgent care. I do have an annual travel insurance with Allianz. Any advice would be appreciated. Besides the leg pain I am suffering from not being able to finish my Camino!!!
 
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The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Speak to the staff wherever you are staying; they'll advise on where to go to get it checked out.
They will be a lot better option to help you rather than someone on the forum.
👍
Actually I was trying to understand the difference between Centro de salud and if anyone knows the equivalent of an urgent care here. Of course I will ask someone locally when it’s timely. I was in pain in the middle of the night asking for some clarity
 
Thanks for that. I was also able to look up info on my phone but not sure if these are like urgent care or something for the locals only. Thanks though
Not just for locals, in my experience.
I hope you are feeling somewhat better now, sorry, I meant to enquire first before commenting!
 
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Check your government's (?) website.

If an American citizen becomes seriously ill or injured abroad, a U. S. consular officer can assist in locating appropriate medical services and informing family and friends. If necessary, a consular officer can also assist in the transfer of funds from the United States.
 
I recommend going to a private hospital or clinic. The reason is that most of the public clinics and hospitals don't have a way to give you a bill at time of service. This means that you will need to wait (sometimes months) to receive the bill in postal or email before you can pay it and submit it to your insurance. At a private place you can pay by credit card, and they will give you a statement that you can submit right away to you insurance.

You should also call Allianz and ask them how to proceed. Make sure that you have all the necessary documentation to file your claim.
 
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Thanks for that. I was also able to look up info on my phone but not sure if these are like urgent care or something for the locals only. Thanks though
There are an excellent first port of call for all.


I am sure Allianz also have an International Help Line number which you should call also for their advice. Take care.
 
The Centros de Salude (I attended one in Triacastela) are the day to day offices for medical needs. Like a resident professional w/o the bills ;) Most run by young doctors and a nurse.

Best way would be, IMHO, to contact the Allianz for assistance. If it's unbarable, you should see an ER or "Urgencias" immediately.
 
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US citizens can show up to a Centro de Salud and get medical help. You’ll have to pay up front - it was about 90€ in Los Arcos last month but no x-rays or other tests were needed. if your insurance agrees that the care meets their requirements, you’ll be reimbursed.
 
US citizens can show up to a Centro de Salud and get medical help. You’ll have to pay up front
Interesting. In 2018 I went to the public hospital in Santiago to make sure that what I thought were shin splints weren't something worse. I asked where I could pay and they didn't have any way to accept payment at the hospital. A couple of months later I received s bill by email (and also snail mail) for over €300! I had no X-rays or other tests, just asked 'does it hurt when I do this? How about this?"

I imagine different regions and facilities do things differently, and perhaps it has also changed in Santiago in the last 6 years.
 
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I fell two years ago and went to the Centro de Salud. I had x-rays. I got a bill for €400 later and my insurance covered it completely. Worked great.

This year I had a client who developed cellulitis I took him to the centro de salud in Sarria. There a very nice doctor examined him and gave him a prescription for antibiotics.
Worked great again
 
Update: thanks everyone who offered good advice and support. I ended up going to a nearby hospital in Pontevedra. Even though it says on my Allianz plan no payment required, they insisted I pay up front, 489€
I’m saving all documents and hope it’s. Or a fight to get reimbursed. Once I paid, they got me right in and had X-rays. The doctor determined I tore some ligaments in my knee. I’m now wearing a compression sleeve and taking 4 drugs. Hopefully it heals soon but unfortunately I think my Camino is over. So if anyone sees me limping around between here and Santiago, say hello
 
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The doctor determined I tore some ligaments in my knee. I’m now wearing a compression sleeve and taking 4 drugs. Hopefully it heals soon but unfortunately I think my Camino is over. So if anyone sees me limping around between here and Santiago, say hello

I am very glad to hear that you have received the care you needed. And good luck with the insurance hassles. I too have had an injury-ending camino, and know how hard it is to accept. Hang in there.

Just as a postscript to add some more detail to the discussion about Spanish health care generally --

One of the reasons that it is so hard to generalize about the Spanish health care system is that even though it is "nationalized", it is established and administered by the Comunidades Autonomas (roughly equivalent to regions). So what happens in Pontevedra can be very different than what happens in Los Arcos. And of course there are private options, too, so that's another source of differences.

In small towns, the centro de salud is likely to be the first point of contact. I have been to two that I can remember, one in La Robla (in the province of León on the Salvador), and just this past camino in Montellano in Andalucía. The La Robla facility had morning and afternoon hours, and the Montellano facility was 24/7 and doubled as a consulta médica and urgencias. Neither had any method of collecting money -- it's not that they want to provide "free care" to pilgrims, just that they are not set up to receive people other than those with health cards. In both cases I was treated quickly and no one was at all concerned about my getting "free care." It was a very different story in Mérida one year when I needed an x-ray. At the advice of the hospitalero, I went down to the public hospital, got the x-ray, and was able to pay my bill in cash. So it's impossible to generalize about what non EU-citizens are going to encounter when you have to get medical treatment in Spain.

But the bottom line is that in spite of ongoing cuts and debates over privatization, the Spanish health care system is overall excellent and you can be sure of getting good care no matter what your nationality.
 
I'm glad that it's not broken!
I also have had a Camino ending injury - in fact two! One was the shin splints which went away on their own, but the second was a broken wrist which required two surgeries in Portugal.

But, those injuries didn't stop me from coming back!

Even though it says on my Allianz plan no payment required, they insisted I pay up front, 489€

I would be quite surprised if Allianz had agreements with every hospital and health center around the world to wait to be paid until they review the case. Especially since they didn't direct you to a particular hospital.
 
I tore my meniscus 2 Yeats ago in Portugal ending my Camino prematurely. The day after being told this by a doctor I took an Uber to the Porto airport and flew home. The flight was about 1200 Canadian dollars. Allianz reimbursed me for it. It helped that the Portuguese doctor wrote I needed to return home for medical care. It really was trip interruption. Keep everything you receive and be patient. You should be compensated for any emergency expenses.
 
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The real take away from this is for all to make sure you are health insured while travelling. Provided you’re using a reputable company, which Allianz is, you will get paid sooner or later. Good luck with your knee, and hope it’s not too painful.
 
Relieved to hear that it wasn't a broken leg, but sad to hear you have to go home early. Many of us have had to do that. Broke my wrist in 2018 after just 11 days on the CF and had to fly home, but have walked 3 Caminos since then. You will be back.
 
@MariaSP lives in Pontevedra and may have a recommendation.
Ugh! I didn't get a notification about this, so I'm too late.
But anyway, if anyone is in Pontevedra and needs urgent medical attention, your best bet is Hospital Quirón Salud.
It's right next to the Camino in town, but for urgent care you should go through the Rúa Castelao entrance.
 
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A Camino friend of mine fell and broke her wrist in Portugal on her second Camino. It was casted, but no surgery needed. She had planned to head straight home, but changed her mind and after resting a few days, carried on and completed her Camino. I realize her story is by no means typical, but I admired her will to keep going.
 
After walking 5 hard days, slogging through rain and mud my leg was very sore and I took a rest day. Feeling better I left Tui Monday and by the end of the day can hardly walk. I can’t put any weight on it, just walking using my poles and taxis 🥲
I’m in Pontevedra and can’t sleep. I need to see a doctor but. It sure how to do that in Spain. If I were in California I would go to an urgent care. I do have an annual travel insurance with Allianz. Any advice would be appreciated. Besides the leg pain I am suffering from not being able to finish my Camino!!!
Get your insurance papers ready and get to the emergency dept of hospital for an assessment. We had that experience, all went well for us. Good luck.
 
I'm glad that it's not broken!
I also have had a Camino ending injury - in fact two! One was the shin splints which went away on their own, but the second was a broken wrist which required two surgeries in Portugal.

But, those injuries didn't stop me from coming back!



I would be quite surprised if Allianz had agreements with every hospital and health center around the world to wait to be paid until they review the case. Especially since they didn't direct you to a particular hospital.
Actually they did direct me. I searched my area and quite a few came up. I selected that hospital because it says they handle all billing directly. Oh well I’ve got my receipts. 🤞
 
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….. I do have an annual travel insurance with Allianz. Any advice would be appreciated. …..

Trecile said: “You should also call Allianz and ask them how to proceed. Make sure that you have all the necessary documentation to file your claim.”

This is very good advice. I had to abort a Camino in 2019. I didn’t call the insurance company or see a local doctor. I just flew home to see my MD. The insurance company refused any compensation for the costs of cancelling/changing my flights. You need to see a qualified medical practitioner and document any out-of-pocket costs. Your first step should be a call to Allianz.
 
Check your government's (?) website.
Not needed. Entirely possible she has something soft tissue anyway, we on the internet have no way of knowing. And consular officials aren't doctors. They're bureaucrats.

Good advice was given above. My one experience with the local clinica was that they were open during business hours. They didn't have an X-ray machine on site, we had to then go to the Urgencia by taxi for the X-ray.

They will write script for needed equipment, like crutches. Also if the standard of care involves anti-coagulants for your flight home. They did ask DH what he used for pain, I suspect that if he had said "aspirin" they wouldn't have written a script for some anticoagulants as aspirin already does that.

(Pharmacists there have some prescribing ability, but they don't give injections. Just in case you need to know.)

HTH, you can probably get healed up and come back next year. Save your credencial to continue use then.
 
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After walking 5 hard days, slogging through rain and mud my leg was very sore and I took a rest day. Feeling better I left Tui Monday and by the end of the day can hardly walk. I can’t put any weight on it, just walking using my poles and taxis 🥲
I’m in Pontevedra and can’t sleep. I need to see a doctor but. It sure how to do that in Spain. If I were in California I would go to an urgent care. I do have an annual travel insurance with Allianz. Any advice would be appreciated. Besides the leg pain I am suffering from not being able to finish my Camino!!!
I too had an issue leading into Burgos on the St James Way. I went to the hospital, I clearly said I would pay to see a doctor, I was diagnosed with tendonitis and told put my leg up for 5 days with ice and do not move or put weight on it. I booked into a 5 star hotel where ice was available, room service, wifi etc and stayed put. I returned to the hospital same doctor as pre arranged and got chevked again a diagnosed letter, meds to continue and cleared to continue at a slow pace. I did finish and received my compensela. I live in New Zealand and missed 220klms of the trail but went back 2 years later and completed it. If your leg was broken, you would not be able to put any weight on it. I encourage you to take my lead, take time out, do not try to do this without a good hotel support where you can do nothing. My insurance paid for everything. If your with others, let them go and catch up later. Best Wishes
 
After walking 5 hard days, slogging through rain and mud my leg was very sore and I took a rest day. Feeling better I left Tui Monday and by the end of the day can hardly walk. I can’t put any weight on it, just walking using my poles and taxis 🥲
I’m in Pontevedra and can’t sleep. I need to see a doctor but. It sure how to do that in Spain. If I were in California I would go to an urgent care. I do have an annual travel insurance with Allianz. Any advice would be appreciated. Besides the leg pain I am suffering from not being able to finish my Camino!!!
Allianz policy should have a 24/7 emergency help phone number. Hope you brought your declaration page with you
 
Getting medical care in a foreign country can be challenging, however carefully one has purchased medical insurance and tried to understand how to go about getting care when needed. My one attempted use of my medical insurance in Spain was quite confusing. I needed stitches after a fall and was driven to an evening clinic by the host of the albergue where I was to spend the night. He spoke English and translated to the doctor. I left there with a letter from the doctor and photos of the mess that my face was in. I went to a city hospital a week later to get the stitches out and arrange for payment for the care which I had received at the evening clinic. The administrator read the letter written by the doctor then searched his computer for a report from her of this incident. Failing any official report, he would not accept payment. He got someone to remove the stitches and sent me away. I did not need to claim payment from my medical insurance. But there was enough of a fuss that I wished I had just removed the stitches myself.
 
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Update: thanks everyone who offered good advice and support. I ended up going to a nearby hospital in Pontevedra. Even though it says on my Allianz plan no payment required, they insisted I pay up front, 489€
I’m saving all documents and hope it’s. Or a fight to get reimbursed. Once I paid, they got me right in and had X-rays. The doctor determined I tore some ligaments in my knee. I’m now wearing a compression sleeve and taking 4 drugs. Hopefully it heals soon but unfortunately I think my Camino is over. So if anyone sees me limping around between here and Santiago, say hello
Hi-
Hello… a fellow “Californian” here.
I’m sorry that’s happened to you.

i know you said “5-hard days of slogging”- did you “slip/slide down any hillsides (TBH… thst was my biggest fear)
I’m glad you got the health services you nedded…:0)
Have a safe journey—maybe you can still do some traveling around; since you have the time off work (?)
If you already have your overnight stays booked (and probably paid for)- Can you Taxi between locations and still make your way to SdC? 🫶🏼
 

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