My path to better feet….hopefully! Right Foot.

If you’ve managed to find your way here from some random search engine then hello!! You or someone you know is obviously suffering from flat feet or pes planus if you want to get all fancy about it. Sorry to hear that. It sucks!

Here’s a little bit about my history just to let you know where I’m coming from:

I was born with flat feet. My Father has them and so does my paternal Grandmother. I was born in the 70’s in the UK so obviously not a lot was done about it then, although even today nothing is really done about flat feet in children either in the UK or here in the USA (I moved here in my late teens) so I won’t really blame the NHS for that! Pediatric doctors told my parents that I would grow out of them (wrong!) and the doctors I see now are still hearing the same thing from pediatric doctors. I hope one day they will realize that just because they stop seeing us after a certain age does NOT mean that we have miraculously grown arches and everything is hunky dorey!!

I was never great at sports. I danced a lot and ran around like all the other kids but I was never very stable on my feet. I started having hip pain at the age of 7 and saw a multitude of specialists but I was eventually told that I had shallow hip sockets so that must be the reason for the pain. It wasn’t. My aches and pains really started once I moved to New York in my late teens. My days were filled with endless walking and no one ever told me to wear orthodics. I didn’t even know what they were. I was in constant pain. Not only did my ankles and feet hurt, but my legs, hips and back. In fact I was starting to get scoliosis.

It wasn’t until I got to Los Angeles (and got health insurance!!!) in my mid 20’s that I really started to educate myself on what the hell was going on with my body bio-mechanically. I was in my 20’s but felt like a woman of 70! Something wasn’t right.

I eventually found a podiatrist who fitted me for orthodics and I wore them religiously. I kid you not. I live my life in tennis shoes and sneakers so wearing orthodics wasn’t annoying for me. I’ve never been one for heels!! Even though I wore them every day the pain never went away. They did make me more stable on my feet but my over-pronation was getting worse. After 8 years of wearing them, with my knees almost touching because of the severity of the pronation I was at my wits end. It wasn’t until I was researching about tailbone pain (which I’ve had for over 5 years) that I stumbled on the Hyprocure website (www.hyprocure.com) I was entranced!!!!! Could this REALLY be the answer to my prayers? I had spent my life meeting with specialists, surgeons, physical therapists, accupuncturists, chiropractors and a whole slew of other people who told me that my feet were the major cause of my problems but there wasn’t much they could do about it.

I obviously knew about the osteotomy surgery (moving the heel bone and cutting tendons etc) but the recovery time and complications were way too scary to think about. Here was a product that boasted minimally invasive surgery and less down time. That I could deal with. Luckily for me there was a specialist near by who took my insurance! YAY! I made an appointment the next day and met with the podiatrist. He took x-rays of my feet standing normally (for me!) and then self-correcting. Seeing as I had flexible flat feet I was a candidate! Hurrah. I would be in a half-cast for 2 weeks and then an air boot for another 2 weeks.

That night I searched the internet for any information I could find on this surgery. Other than the Hyprocure manufacturer’s website there was hardly anything about it. Luckily I stumbled across a couple of blogs that were a god send but I was really surprised at the lack of information. I was just going to have to put my trust in God that I was making the right decision. I knew something had to change though so I was willing to take that risk. The fact that it was reversible was also reassuring.

I scheduled the right foot surgery just before Christmas. During my pre-op meeting a few days before surgery the doctor and I discussed the implant. We both decided to go with the The Futura™ Conical Subtalar Implant (CSI) by Tornier. My doctor was more comfortable with this implant and felt it worked better than the Hyprocure, he also felt there was less of a risk of the CSI from coming out due to the way it’s built.. He had also done over 50 surgeries with the CSI and only 6 with the Hyprocure. I was comfortable with his decision. He said I would be up and walking around with no problems in a month. We’ll see!

All that was left to do was the pre-op blood work, EKG and chest x-ray.  I had wanted to do the surgery just under local but he felt it was better under twilight, I agreed (more on that in a later post!) I left his office feeling apprehensive and excited in equal amounts.

So there you have it. Long winded? Yes. Informative? Probably not! But I felt I should explain how I got to be here. I too have kept a journal of sorts, in part for my own benefit to track my recovery but I also wanted to return the favor. The two blogs that I had read before doing this surgery were invaluable. I hope, in some small way, this blog can help someone who is thinking about getting this done. Please feel free to leave any comments. I’ll keep updating this blog as my recovery continues! 🙂

DAY OF SURGERY (DAY 1):

I hate waking up early but I have to be at Northridge Hospital at 7:30am. My Mum has arrived to help me during my surgery. She didn’t want my poor husband to have to do all the work!

I started taking Meloxicam 7.5mg (generic for Mobic) a few days ago. It’s a prescribed anti-inflammatory. My doctor had originally prescribed Celebrex but my insurance wouldn’t cover it. I’ll probably have to take this for a few weeks. As long as I take it with food and drink lots there shouldn’t be a problem. Last night I spent wiggling my right foot for no reason!!! As a kid I never broke anything so the idea of being in a cast kinda weirds me out. The fact that I won’t be able to shave my leg for 2 weeks grosses me out!!

Check-in at the hospital was painless. Just lots of forms to sign. Waited around until 8:30am and then I was finally taken onto the ward. Sadly the nurses (or at least the nurse that was assigned to me) didn’t really pay me much attention and ended up leaving me to go deal with someone else which meant none of the pre-op stuff was done (MORE paperwork and the urine test) By the time another nurse was sent to me  it was already time for me to be in surgery (9:30am) The anesthesiologist  ended up having to put my IV in and (pardon my french) he royally fucked it up! He hit my nerve with the needle!!! The worst pain I have ever been in. Just horrible. After I had calmed down and he had apologized they finally wheeled me over to surgery. The last thing I remember is my doctor saying his lead coat was too small.

Woke up back on the ward. I say “woke up” but I was so tired! I’ve been under twilight many times in the past few years and I have never felt this drowsy. My doctor was trying to explain that everything went well and that he didn’t have a waterproof boot for showering but that I can pick one up on Monday (today is friday – gross!) The cast on my leg goes up to just under my knee. The nurse showed me how to walk on the crutches and then finally I was allowed to leave (by this time it was nearly 2pm, I should’ve been home by 12!)

Driving home was a nightmare. I had to sit with my leg up on the back seat. My lovely husband bought me ginger ale and saltines because he knows I always get sick after going under twilight. Of course I still ended up throwing up in the car, luckily the nurse had given me some “vomit to go” cups! Finally got home and fell asleep for 3 hours. Woke up, ate a little and took a meloxicam. I don’t have any pain medication other than tylenol (I’m allergic to vicodin and I don’t like taking narcotics anyway) My toes are still numb which gives my foot such a weird feeling, almost like it isn’t mine! Getting around on crutches is annoying. For the next few days I have to make sure my foot is propped up higher than my heart. Sleeping should be fun!

My first cast!

DAY AFTER SURGERY (DAY 2):

Sleeping was….interesting! It didn’t help that I needed to pee all night but the thought of having to walk to the bathroom on crutches made me stay in bed until I couldn’t take it any more! I managed to make it though (almost fell over twice!) The local anesthetic started to wear off at about 6AM, the pain is mostly in my heel bone. It’s not a terrible pain just a dull ache. My toes are still numb although not as bad as yesterday.

I spent all day sitting on the couch with my leg raised. I can’t ice the actual ankle seeing as it’s covered with a cast so I ice behind my knee which is the main artery to the foot. I’m not very good at remembering to ice I’m afraid. I’m sure I should be icing it every hour but I only do it once today. I took a baby aspirin this morning and some tylenol at lunch. My doctor wants me to take a baby aspirin every day I have the cast on because he’s concerned about blood clots. Another meloxicam in the evening and some more tylenol. Supposedly the day after surgery is the worst for pain but I have a feeling he shot me with so much local that I’m not really going to feel the pain until later! Hopefully I won’t have to take anything stronger than tylenol though.

I refuse to wrap my leg in plastic bags and tape to shower. I cannot risk getting my leg wet. The bacteria getting into the surgery site would not be good! I had to wash with a combination of washcloth and wet wipes, not the best thing but needs must! The worst thing about recovery by far has been the cast. It’s so ridiculously cumbersome and you can’t do anything while wearing it. Even going to the bathroom is a huge production. I can’t stand the thing. I just pray it’s worth it.

DAY 3:

Trying to stay positive. The cast and crutches are proving to be a nightmare and it’s only my 3rd day!!!! I have 11 more?!?!?!? It doesn’t help that I’m not a patient person, I want things done now, now, NOW!!!

The local anesthetic has worn off completely now…..so has my husband’s patience I think! It doesn’t help that we’re in the middle of a freak winter storm in Los Angeles. It’s rained for 5 days non-stop which means our dogs don’t want to go outside (spoilt babies!) so the two little ones keep having accidents (on purpose!) in the house and I can’t help with the clean up.

Still taking tylenol (2x a day) I’m hoping the pain subsides soon, It’s not excruciating but it is painful enough to wake me up at night. My wrists are sore from walking with the crutches. I’ve always had weak wrists and with the nerve damage caused by the bastard anesthesiologist (yes, he put the IV in my wrist!! MY WRIST!!!) it’s proving even harder.

Tomorrow I have my first post-op with the doctor. Hopefully he’ll have the waterproof boot there so at least I can shower! I did manage to wash my hair in the sink today all by myself (it’s the little things!) I’m really hoping he says I can take the cast off sooner than 2 weeks but I think I’m just fooling myself. My Mum said I just have to take it one day at a time. She’s right of course. I’m just feeling sorry for myself and I have no business doing that. I’m super paranoid that my foot is going to heal in an odd position because of the cast. I have no clue why I think that. I think I read someone’s blog or post where they had mentioned their foot healed pointing downwards. I guess I’m also a little worried that the stent is going to come out. I’m not sure how it can in this cast but I think it could move at least which would be bad. I told my husband that I haven’t been icing my foot that much (once a day) and he mentioned that the doctor did tell me to ice it every hour for the first few days. I have no recollection of this thanks to being supper groggy when I came out of surgery – why do doctors feel the need to tell you super important things when you’ve just come out of surgery and totally out of it?!? Hopefully my ankle isn’t too swollen. One of my major concerns is my tailbone. I’ve had chronic tailbone pain for over 5 years and it’s only just been properly diagnosed and treated. The nerve block has been working perfectly until now (knock on wood) but with the endless sitting I’m worried the pain will start up again. I’m hoping the meloxicam will help with any inflammation. I would hate to get pain in that area again.

DAY 4:

First post-op visit. This is the first time I’ve left the house since my surgery. It’s pissing it down outside so I have to wrap my right foot in a plastic bag. Had to negotiate crutches in the rain and up and down stairs (we don’t have stairs in the house) I sat in the back of the SUV with my foot sticking through between the front seats on the arm rest near the gear stick. We had to take it really slowly thanks to the rain and the crazy LA drivers who don’t know how to drive in the rain!

Sexy cast in a sexy plastic bag!

We managed to make it there in one piece! The doctor took the cast off to check the surgical site. I’m surprised to see no swelling. There are a couple of stitches but the incision is very small (0.5 inches) there’s also a lot of bruising around the heel bone. He took 2 x-rays (side view and straight down) everything seems to be good according to him. Managed to have a few minutes of freedom before they put another cast on, but this time I chose purple!! Other than the obvious pain when I move my foot it feels weird not being able to turn my foot so much to the right. I realized I never took a “before” picture of my right foot 😦

First post-op visit.

Technically I shouldn’t be getting my cast removed until Dec. 31st which is 2 weeks since the surgery, but my doctor will be out of town and the last day he’s working is Dec. 28th. If I promise not to put any weight on it he’s agreed to remove it then and put the air boot on!!!!!! YAY!!!!! Even though I’ll still have to wear the air boot for another 2 weeks I feel that getting the cast removed will help me realize my progression in my healing and recovery. I also picked up the waterproof boot while I was there, so first thing tomorrow I’m taking a shower!! Of course my husband will have to help me because I can’t balance on my left foot.

Kick Ass purple!

I only took the baby aspirin and the meloxicam today. My ankle hurt after the doctors visit because of all the poking and prodding so I was going to take some tylenol when I got back, but I forgot to. The pain hasn’t been too bad today. It mostly just hurts when I put any weight on my right foot which isn’t surprising. I’m not sure how long it takes for scar tissue to form around the stent but I’m hoping not too long!

DAY 5:

Bugger! Spoke too soon. Last night the pain was horrible. I was extremely aware of my heel bone which is an odd feeling. I think the new cast is too tight. My Mum (who is a nurse) was worried about the first cast I had, she thought it looked too loose. Maybe I’m just not used to having a cast and this is how it’s supposed to feel. It just seems to be pressing a lot on the front of my foot up onto the front of my ankle. I don’t notice it so much when I’m awake but at night is when you’re more aware of pain because there’s nothing to distract you. I took some tylenol but that didn’t do anything for the pain. I also iced behind my knee a couple times today just in case my ankle is swollen (hence the pressing pain)

The big news is I managed to shower today!!!!!!!! 🙂 My husband had to go in the shower with me, thank goodness we have a large shower and not one of those tiny cubicles! I was exhausted by the end of it though and had to finish drying myself while sitting on the toilet!! The waterproof boot is weird but it works a treat. It basically vacuum packs your leg in really thick rubber. I really do suggest spending the $45 and buying it (it may be cheaper online, I got mine at the doctors office) You’ll thank yourself later. So much easier and less hassle than trying to wrap a plastic bag around your cast and securing it with tape. The great thing is I’ll just keep this for the next surgery. Oh God….that’s right….I have to go through this again…*groan*

DAY 6:

Had to go back to my doctor this morning. Last night was a nightmare 😦 The pain coming from my ankle was ridiculous. The doctor cut the cast at the sides but that didn’t relieve the pressure. He worked out that the brown bandage (the one that sticks to itself) that he had wrapped around my ankle was too tight. After cutting all that away (the skin was so sore in that area) we decided to keep the same cast but just wrap the entire thing in an ACE bandage which means I can control how tight I want the cast to be. Everything seems to be feeling alright but I’ll wait to see what tonight brings.

Didn’t take any tylenol today just a baby aspirin and a meloxicam. The suture sight is starting to itch which I believe means it’s starting to heal. Another day done. One day at a time. Just breath……

DAY 7:

I finally slept last night!! Only woke up once or twice to rearrange the pillow that’s under my leg. The past couple of nights had been horrible so I’m so happy last night was a success 🙂 My Mum had to go back to the East Coast today so my poor husband has gone from doing 50% of my bidding to 100%! I did manage to feed the dogs while he was dropping my Mum off at the airport but it took forever and my poor supporting left foot was in agony! No tylenol today just the baby aspirin and meloxicam. I haven’t really been doing anything constructive with my time, I seem to only have enough energy to sit on the couch and watch TV. The thought of getting up and moving around with the crutches is tiring let alone actually doing it!

I shouldn’t complain. I have the luxury of being able to sit here and do nothing. I have a wonderful husband who is up and down getting me stuff, making sure I’m eating and drinking, that I’m warm enough, that I don’t need anything. He’s off work at the moment but I’m dreading when he goes back, I’m not quite sure how I’ll manage. As for me, my industry (Hollywood) has shut down for the Holidays and doesn’t start back up until Jan. 3rd. I’ll still be recovering then so I’ll miss out on a couple weeks of auditions but it’s not like I have a regular day job and have to go into the office every day. That would suck. I also don’t have kids. Hats off to anyone getting this surgery, or who had this surgery and had to deal with work and kids. You’re made of stronger stuff than me! 🙂

DAY 8:

Christmas Eve. This time last week I had just had surgery and was questioning if I had made the right decision but I know I have. I’ve spent nearly 34 years walking around in pain. I can’t do it any longer. I refuse to do it any longer!

This week seems to have simultaneously gone quickly and slowly! Walking around on the crutches is still a nightmare. I know I should be a little more adventurous and go outside but I don’t feel very stable on them in my house, I can’t imagine dealing with sidewalks!

Today marked day 7 of sitting on my couch. My bum has started to go numb! My poor husband has been doing absolutely everything for me. I’m a pretty independent woman so having to get someone to help with everything has been hard for me. It’s very frustrating but I’m sure it’s even more frustrating for him.

Just a baby aspirin and a meloxicam today. Not sure when it’s safe to stop taking the meloxicam. I’ll have to ask the doctor. Although I have just realized that my chronic hip pain (which I’ve had since age 7) has completely gone since taking it!! What a happy by-product 🙂 Usually sitting on the couch for too long (or even sitting for 2 hours in a movie theater) would be murder on my hip, it would literally burn with pain. Because of this surgery I’m literally sitting on the couch from about 9am until 11pm only getting up to use the bathroom and so far no hip pain! Wonderful!! I wonder when I stop taking the meloxicam if the hip pain will come back?

DAY 9:

Christmas Day! For us, a very quiet Christmas. Just the hubby, myself and the doggies. Since the surgery I’ve been sitting with my leg raised on a couple of cushions. The first two days I raised my leg above my heart but after seeing the doctor at the post-op and seeing that I didn’t have much swelling he said not to worry too much about that. I don’t like sitting with my foot on the floor though, I know the cast is only made of fibercast (therefore much lighter than the old plastercast) but it’s still heavy on my little bird leg!

Just a baby aspirin and a meloxicam today. Did some research on meloxicam (‘Mobic’) to see if I could take it long term. The fact that my hip pain has gone has been such a bonus. Sadly the long term effects of mobic aren’t good. In fact the short term effects are pretty bad! Luckily I haven’t had any side effects from it. Why can’t an NSAID be OK for you and not cause major problems?!?!

DAY 10:

Different pain this morning. It’s a strange pain near the incision site. Of course my first thought is that the stent has worked it’s way out which would really suck (I can’t spend another 2 weeks in this bloody cast!) There’s no way of telling if it’s shifted until the doctor takes x-rays in 2 days. I’m hoping it’s just paranoia and everything is fine. I only took a baby aspirin and a meloxicam. I didn’t feel the need to take any tylenol. I have a feeling the pain will be bad when I start walking. I’m prepared for it but secretly hoping it won’t be too bad!

Tomorrow I actually venture out (haven’t been outside since Day 6!) to the dentist. Should be interesting seeing as I move my feet a lot when I’m nervous or in pain – two things I feel when at the dentist!

I’m really dreading having to go through this all again in a few months when I get my left foot done. But I can’t keep jumping ahead and thinking about that. I have to just concentrate on healing from this one and learning to walk on this corrected foot, which I’m really hoping won’t be too difficult even though the other blogs mentioned it took them a long time to get used to it 😦

I re-read some of the hyprocure blogs that I had initially looked at when researching this procedure. It’s different now that I’m post-op, I understand more of what they went through although everyone’s recovery has been different. One guy had a cast on for 8 days but most started walking the day or a few days after surgery. Some even walked straight after surgery. I did ask my doctor about this. He felt in his experience it was better to wear the cast for 2 weeks and walk in the air boot for another 2 weeks before even trying to walk in regular shoes. He’s had 100% success rate doing it that way so I’m not going to argue with him.

Tuesday should be interesting! I graduate to the air boot for 2 weeks. Not sure at what point I’m able to be weight-bearing (hopefully soon!)

I miss driving!

DAY 11:

One thing I’m looking forward to is actually showering on my own schedule! It’s the little things! 🙂

Went to the dentist today. It was nice to get out of the house. The suture sight was itching again today. I’ve also been getting weird twinges in my foot. Nothing painful just every so often I’m aware of something. Also holding my foot up when walking with the crutches was painful today. I think it’s the sprained ankle syndrome that other people have mentioned. It could just be the scar tissue forming. I’m hoping it’s not too inflamed although with the baby aspirin and the meloxicam it shouldn’t be.

DAY 12:

The cast is gone! So long you annoying bastard! My foot looks……weird. I’ve always had thin feet (to go with the rest of me!) but the saggy arches always made them look wider than they actually were. With my foot now corrected  it’s become streamlined!! The arch isn’t huge (wasn’t expecting it to be) but it’s definitely an improvement. The top of my foot looks nicer as well, I actually have the little hump that ‘normal’ people have! The bruising has gone down since Day 4 (my first post-op visit) My heel is still an angry purple though but in smaller patches and its still pretty swollen too. The doctor removed the sutures, put fresh gauze on and wrapped my ankle (too tight….again!) He then took another 2 x-rays. The stent is prefectly positioned according to him, which definitely made me feel better. I was getting more and more paranoid that the stent was shifting. He then put me in the air boot cam walker which is giant!

I’m not allowed to put any weight on it until friday (today is tuesday) which is when my cast was supposed to come off and then I can start walking in the boot. He did mention it will take at least a day to get used to walking in the boot, I’m guessing because it’s not a normal walking position. By sunday I’m finally able to shower without the waterproof boot on. I can finally wash that foot!!! YAY! I’ll be walking in the boot until January 13th which is 2 weeks from friday, after that I’ll be in sneakers. I also have to put my orthodic in the boot on friday when I start walking so that it gives my ankle and arch some support while it’s healing. I’m definitely looking forward to walking again but I am dreading the pain!

The great thing about the boot is that I can take it off when I’m showering, sitting on the couch or sleeping. Far easier to deal with than the cast although the air boot is much heavier. My husband and I actually went out to lunch today after my appointment. Nothing fancy but it was nice to be out of the house in the sunshine!

DAY 13:

Last night was the first night sleeping without the cast or a pillow under my foot. I slept OK but every time I changed position I would wake up from the sprained ankle pain. I guess I was also a little worried that I was putting my foot in a weird position.

Actually ventured out with friends today. Nothing major just lunch and a shopping trip to Target. Finally got to go around the store on a “Little Rascal”! Lots of fun! My friend assured me she hadn’t parked the car far from the exit (she had dropped me of at the entrance when we got there) and visually it really didn’t seem that far but when you’re on crutches a 3 minute walk is so tiring 😦 By the time I got to the car I was out of breath! By the time I got home I felt like I’d been out all day even though I was only gone about 4 hours. It was good to get out though.

I have a feeling the swelling is a little more today after my little excursion. The arch of my foot doesn’t seem to be as prominent as yesterday. Hopefully I’m wrong and everything is just fine. Took my meloxicam a little late today but only by 2 hours so I’m sure that’s fine. Accidentally stepped down on the air boot when I was getting out of the car today. I didn’t step down with a lot of force and I wasn’t weight-bearing on it but I still got a weird pins and needles feeling in my heel bone.

I wonder how long the paranoia of my implant coming out will last? Every blog I’ve read has mentioned the same thing so I’m glad it’s not just me! My doctor mentioned that one of his patients who had the procedure about 6 months ago came in with a twisted ankle and was worried that doing so had moved the implant, but after x-raying the foot the implant hadn’t moved! I think that’s a good sign,

DAY 14:

My first day without my husband! Had to drink my coffee in the kitchen this morning because I can’t carry the mug and walk. I managed to feed the dogs but it took a while. My breakfast consisted of chocolate chip cookies because they come in a bag and I can carry that and walk at the same time! As I’m sitting here typing I notice quite a bit of pain in my heel and my foot is pretty stiff to move but after a few seconds of moving it a little it seems fine. The up and down motion doesn’t really hurt that much but moving it left and right does. In fact it moves fine to the left but the stent stops it moving too much to the right. Tomorrow evening I can start walking in the boot. Yikes!

DAY 15:

New Years Eve! Decided to try walking in the boot. I can’t figure the bloody thing out. It’s not the easiest thing to walk in, I’m sure there’s a technique to it but I can’t work it out.  don’t want to put all my weight on it which means shifting from right foot to left causes problems. In the end I go back to walking with the crutches 😦 Fail!

My Best Friend comes over and we decide to go for a drive and a trip to Starbucks. I get her to drive my car because it hasn’t been driven for a couple of weeks. We come back from coffee, play with the dogs and watch some TV. It’s nice to have company though. I decide to ice my foot, trying to walk on it has caused it to hurt. I show my friend how my foot looks now and she’s really surprised at the difference.

My husband and I have a quiet night welcoming the new year. Here’s to a new year filled with health, happiness and no over-pronation!

DAY 16:

New Years Day. Welcome 2011!! Try walking again in the boot and I still can’t manage it 😦 Is it just me? My foot hurts and I can’t work out how to go from moving the right foot to then putting all my weight on it to move my left. Maybe I’m being over paranoid. I decide to walk with just one crutch on my right side for support.

I noticed last night how wasted my right leg is. I thought that only happens when you’re in a cast for a couple of months. My husband promises me that it will spring back in no time, but it’s kind of shocking how withered it looks 😦

Today marks the day I’m finally able to wash my right foot though! No more showering with the boot!!! 🙂 My husband still has to shower with me though because I don’t feel right putting all my weight on my foot especially getting in and out of the shower (you have to step up into the shower) I washed the foot twice but the pen marks are still there – I didn’t want to scrub too hard near the surgical site. But it feels so much better!!! With all the walking though I go to bed and my foot aches 😦

DAY 17:

My foot hurt all night. It just felt really stiff. I found myself having to move it up and down during the night. Put the boot on as soon as I got up and walked out of the bedroom (using a crutch on my right side) some steps are painful others not so much. It’s weird. I guess it depends how I place my foot down. I know the boot is supposed to help by keeping my ankle supported but it’s so cumbersome and heavy I’m not sure if it’s helping me but I’m not feeling brave enough to try this barefoot! I’m also super paranoid (much more than before) that the implant/stent is going to shift especially now that my foot is weight-bearing now.

DAY 18:

Another day, another adventure in walking( or should that be hobbling?!?) Emailed my doctor today to see if I’m recovering at the right speed and doing things correctly. I don’t see how he claims I should be walking in the boot easily by now because I can’t. I’m really trying. I’m not a baby when it comes to pain (not after having chronic pain most of my life!) but my foot really bloody hurts when I walk on it.

DAY 19:

Feeling a little more optimistic today. Yesterday I walked a little bit on my bare foot (shhh! don’t tell my doctor!) it still hurt but no more than when it’s in the boot. I put the boot back on though because my ankle definitely feels more secure in the boot. By the time I walked to bed though I felt a lot more comfortable with the actual act of walking. When I woke up this morning I was actually looking forward to seeing how walking would be – it was a little easier! Still a little painful but no where near as bad as the other days. And the recovery after walking has gotten easier. Before it would hurt for at least 30 minutes after walking around but now it only aches for a few minutes. Is there an actual light at the end of this very dark tunnel?!?!?!?

However, I noticed (when I went to shower) that my ankle was much more swollen after walking which is surprising because I haven’t really been walking that much. After I showered I sat on the couch with my foot on a couple of pillows and ice over the ankle which brought the swelling down.

DAY 20:

Jeez! We’re at day 20 already! The act of walking to the bathroom last night to brush my teeth and then walking to the bedroom to sleep caused my ankle to swell a little but when I woke this morning it seemed fine (if a little stiff) I realized I hadn’t taken pictures of the scar:

The surgical scar is pretty small.

I also forgot to take a picture when the bruising was really bad, however here’s a pic of how it looks 20 days after surgery:

The bruising has gone down.

You probably can’t tell but the swelling is still very apparent to me. Mostly on the side of the scar but there is still some swelling around the bruise.

DAY 21:

Spoke to my doctor yesterday. He thinks I’m recovering well. He mentioned that after being in a cast (even only for 2 weeks) can cause some of the muscles to atrophy which causes pain when walking. The pain is definitely much better though (a 2 or 3 out of 10) He does want me to start walking without the use of the right crutch. This morning I started walking with just the boot. I had tried doing that a few days ago and couldn’t manage it but I’m happy to report that I’ve been getting around the house without the use of crutches! Hurrah!!!!! It does make my ankle hurt a little more than it has been but I know the pain will subside in a couple of days. By this time next week I’ll be in sneakers….hopefully! 🙂

Managed to get into the shower for the first time without having to use my crutches! Yay! It’s also been great walking round the house being able to pick things up and carry stuff using both hands. I actually walked in the garden today which was nice, there are a few low steps but I seemed to deal with them OK. Let’s see what tomorrow brings!

DAY 22:

So far I haven’t posted a pic of the sexy boot I’ve been hobbling along in. So here it is:

sexy boot!

Today has been good. There hasn’t been a vast improvement in the pain level since yesterday but I didn’t expect it. Haven’t taken any meloxicam since yesterday but I have been taking advil.

DAy 23:

No change in pain level sadly. Started taking the meloxicam again. Actually ventured outside for a little shopping and lunch. Took the crutches with me (just in case) but after walking a little with them I realized they were more of a hassle than a help, so I just stuck to walking in the boot. It was painful (5 out of 10) but I know I have to get used to it seeing as I’ll be in sneakers next week.

By the time I got home my ankle had swollen a lot so I iced and elevated. I also took some tylenol. The pain seems to be around the ankle bone on the outside of my foot, I’m hoping this is normal.

DAY 24:

My foot was pretty sore last night while sleeping. It’s the weird stiffness almost like when you’ve worked out to hard at the gym and your thighs are sore. Took some nexium today (as I did for the past two days) just in case there’s any damage being done by all the NSAID’s I’ve been taking. Probably going to head out today for a bit, trying to get used to being outside again. I know that sounds strange but after being in the house for so long it becomes more of an effort for me to go outside, part laziness, part fear of walking I think. We’ll see how my ankle feels by the time I get home.

The big news….I took a shower by myself!!!!!! YAY!! It’s the small victories! 🙂

I probably walked more today than I have in the whole time I’ve been wearing the boot. My ankle felt OK, the pain was probably a 3 out of 10. By the time I got home it was definitely swollen but no more than the other day when I went out – so I think that’s good. I iced and elevated. I think going back onto the meloxicam has definitely helped, I also took a couple of tylenol.

I walked a little barefoot before bed. My right leg feels really weak and light. My foot wants to move in a normal walking gait and my brain is telling it to but there seems to be a disconnect! I pretty much do a weird shuffling walk. I’m not worried though, when I first started walking in the boot I did the same thing. My achilles is a little painful, it feels tight when I walk. The doctor did mention that some patients have to get surgery on their achilles when they have the hyprocure procedure because the tendon isn’t flexible enough. He wasn’t concerned about mine, I just think it needs some time to adjust to the new way of walking. All in all a very positive day.

DAY 25:

So far so good. My ankle seems to be at the same pain level as yesterday which means all that walking I did yesterday hasn’t affected it. Had to deal with the usual stiffness in my foot last night. The scar is healing nicely. I’ve been rubbing “bio oil” on it every night which supposedly helps with the scarring. because I have olive skin I scar really easily, but I’m not too concerned, the scar is so tiny.

Have to call in a refill on the meloxicam today as I’m nearly out, also feel like doing a little housework today! I’m sure my poor husband will appreciate that. My desk in the office looks like a crazy person attacked it!

DAY 26:

Well I knew that all the walking would cause something to happen! My back is killing me. It started yesterday and got worse. I think it’s because the shoe is so big and cumbersome that my walking gait is all screwed up which puts too much pressure on my spine, especially mid-back. My hips are also hurting. It’s not too bad though, just stiff.

Took it easy today, Stayed on the couch, Did do some housework though 🙂 I walked a little bit barefoot last night. I managed to go a little further than before and it was definitely easier, still a weird feeling though. My poor right leg is so weak.

DAY 27:

I’ve been walking a little bit barefoot and it’s so much easier than when I tried a few days ago. Tomorrow I see the doctor and finally shed the boot!!!

DAY 28:

I am officially in sneakers! Got home and jumped in my car! I haven’t been able to drive for a month and I’ve really missed it. Spent the afternoon driving round and running errands without the help of anyone else! YAY! I have to keep my old orthodic in the sneaker for the next couple of weeks to help in supporting my ankle while it heals. It feels great to be walking around though although my foot does get tired.

A month after surgery on right foot:

Actually it’s just over a month and things are going well! Went on a 4 mile bike ride the other day (thank goodness for 80 degree weather in January! You’ve gotta love Los Angeles!) and I’ve been walking round, going to auditions, driving, pretty much doing normal stuff. My foot does get tired easily and if I have to walk a lot it does start to ache but I’m not surprised. My scar is non-existent, I’ll take a picture of it later. There is still a tiny bit of swelling around the ankle bone on the outside of my foot but it’s nothing major. I never thought I would say this but I’m actually looking forward to getting my left foot done!!! My foot looks so good when I stand I keep staring at it!! After 34 years I finally have a somewhat attractive foot! Can’t wait to wear flats 🙂

Nearly 6 weeks after surgery:

I’m walking like a normal person! YAY! When I first came out of the boot I was concerned about stairs because I had read so many other blogs and they mentioned going up and down stairs was the hardest thing. I never had any problems. The first few days of being in shoes were tiring, my foot would get tired easily. But by the 5th day I was fine and by yesterday (just under 2 weeks of being in shoes) I was charging around Target like a crazy person and not even thinking about my foot!!!

Right now is a busy time in Hollywood. It’s pilot season, meaning everyone is auditioning for a bunch of new shows (or “Pilots”), as you can imagine my representation would rather I held off on getting my other foot done, however I want it fixed asap. I can’t wait until the summer. I’m worried my walking gait will be affected, my back could get worse but mostly….I want to wear cute shoes!!! 🙂 I’ve told everyone I’ll get the left foot done mid-february. I can still audition with a cast right?!?!?!? 😉

Right Foot Correction

Tomorrow will be 7 weeks post operation on my right foot. As you can see from the picture above the difference between my right foot and left foot is pretty impressive. It’s especially apparent when you look at the achilles tendon, on my corrected foot it’s straight on my left foot it bends.

After much debate I’ve decided to get my left foot operated on sooner rather than later, so I’m going in tomorrow! (cue dramatic music!) My right foot is totally weight-bearing so I’m not worried about that.

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by kadijah on August 2, 2012 at 10:15 AM

    Hi My daughter who is ten is currently being seen for flat feet. We have not decided which treatments to pursue yet but I’d like to know the name of the doctor you saw for your surgery. Thanks

    Reply

  2. Posted by Lisa on September 7, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    I have overpronated feet too it’s so annoying I’ve tried orthotics they left me in agony after months of trying to wear them. My podiatrist said some people just can’t tolerate orthotics and that he’ll make me softer ones which he said wont give me as much support (great, what’s the point hey?!) I’m seriously fed up I get really bad pain in my knees it’s unbarable. Anyway he said to me I could request surgery which I may get on the NHS ( I live in the UK) im not really sure what to do he told me having implants can limit your motion like jumping for example ! Have you had any problem with your feet ?
    Thanks
    Lisa

    Reply

  3. Posted by Melody on September 22, 2012 at 11:29 PM

    I just wonder if you went to dr vladimir zeetser in ca? Because thats my dr and i just got the csi implant surgery? Also did you get achilles lengtheing as well,

    Reply

  4. My surgeon was Dr Vladimir Zeetser in California. He was great. Melody I hope you’re recovering well. I didn’t need my achilles lengthened but I know some people need it.

    As far as the NHS I’ve just moved back to the UK. Not sure what their views are on the surgery. Would be interesting to find out. I’m sure I’ll have to see a podiatrist at some point over here. My implant hasn’t really limited my motion. I do get a little pain sometimes if I jump from high up or if my foot twists.

    Reply

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