New to the board. A little background on myself. I'm 58 years old and work as a database administrator for a large company.
About 12 years ago (1996) I woke to a intense pain in my left foot. I went to see many doctors and no one had an answer. My feet were always swollen and the pain was very bad. It got to the point where I'd spend most of my free time sitting in a chair, in pain.
After seeing nine doctors over the course of three years I finally found one who knew what I had, but by that time both feet were in pain. I went to another doctor in NYC at the Hospital for Special Surgery for a second opinion and he concurred with the first doctor. This was in 1999. The diagnosis is as follows:
Left severe flatfoot deformity, secondary to posterior tibial tendon tear.
Right severe flatfoot deformity due to torn posterior tibial tendon, right gastroc contacture, right heel valgus.
In simple terms, my tendon was torn, my heel was deformed, and I had zero arch. When I was told what the operation entailed I thought the doctor was crazy.
They would break my heel, reshape it and bolt it in place, take the tendon (Flexor digitorum longus) and transfer it to where the posterior tibial tendon was and cut out the PTT. Then they would take a bone graft from a cadaver and put it in the side of my foot.
The recovery would take 10-12 months, the first 12 weeks would be totally non weight bearing, followed by partial weight bearing, and then PT.
Like I said I thought the dr was crazy and told him no. He said that I'd know when it was time and to see him then.
Well I waited until 2005, by that time I couldn't walk, was in constant pain, and constant swelling in both feet.
I had the first operation in August of 2005 on the left foot, and August 2006 for my right foot.
After two years I was still in pain in both feet. I contacted my surgeon, and he said to come in. I had two MRI's at HSS, followed by bone scans, vascular studies, emg nerve tests. Everything came back normal. He then suggested that I see a pain management doctor.
I've been seeing a PM doctor since 2/08, I'm currently on 40 mg of oxycotin twice a day, with percocet 10/325 for breakthrough pain (up to four a day). I've tried various meds for nerve pain, lyrica (made my feet swell), neurotin and cymbalta (couldn't stay awake), I have a TENS unit which is good, but the relief is short lived. My pain for the most part is controlled, there are days that I hurt (sometimes a lot).
My problem is I really don't like the doctor, I find him to be unresponsive to my needs and would like to find another doctor. The first thing he said to me was "I'd never have foot surgery!!", I told him "with all due respect dr., I've had this for 12 years and I can't walk or stand".
I'm open to suggestions and if you guys need any further information from me just ask.
I'm sorry that I didn't see your post earlier and I'm also surprised that no one responded to your post. That rarely happens here. This is a great group of caring people that doesn't usually leave one hanging. I was re-reading(can't spell today)the posts to 'If you could describe your pain as being anything...what would it be' and wanted to hear more from you so started searching for your other posts...which brought me here. I hope you're still lurking around.
Anyway....you have chronic foot pain. Was your torn tendon the result of an injury. Do you know when it happened? And the flat feet...this was caused by the torn tendon? Or did you have flat feet to start out with? Just curious as I have flat feet as do all of my kids. I do realize there are varying degrees of this.
My hubby shattered his calcaneus and had two plates, 24 screws, 8 wires and cadaver bone inserted to repair it. He was in a wheelchair for 5 months. He had surgery later that was supposed to help with the pain he still had but here we are five years later and he still has pain 24/7. I'm just trying to let you know that I understand how you feel. I also have pain 24/7 in my chest and back.
I hope you find a doctor that you like and who understands you. If you can take away something from the folks at this board it's 'don't give up'! Keep searching for that doctor that will help you. Don't settle for being miserable. You may not get to be pain-free but you deserve to have some sort of quality of life. Tight? Good luck in your search.~Mush
undiagnosed lung and back pain after pneumonia in '03, tmj, migraines,(two failed surgeries for) Kienbock's disease
Hi, haven't been on the forum for awhile but was surfing today and saw your post. The good news is that I found a new pain doctor and he is very good and I like him very much. Now to try and answer your questions.
I've always had flat feet, since I was a kid (I'm 58 now) I've had flat feet. About 13 years ago, I woke up in incredible pain. Long story short, 3 years, nine doctors, I found a doctor who knew what I had.
First of all plenty of people have flat feet and never have any further problems. In my case my tendons didn't actually tear, but they had ripped so many times that they no longer functioned. That was my real problem, and as a result of the non functioning tendon my heel deformed, easiest way i can describe it is if you looked at me from the back, instead of my feet and legs being inline, my feet had collapsed inward (towards the arch) and my heels had deformed outward.
I had the surgeries (two, one per year) to correct the problem. This involved being non weight bearing on crutches for 12 weeks each foot. The recovery for this operation is one year. The problem is that after having the surgeries, I'm still in pain and they don't know why.
And just because you have flat feet that doesn't mean you'll develop what I had.
You may not get this because you posted in 2008. Today, I decided to change the pain mgt. doc. I've had since 2006. I won't bore you with all the details (unless someone needs to know). We all go through a lot of the same things....The reason I am changing is that he is not responsive to my needs. I've seen him for a little over 2 years. He is good to FINALLY refer me to someone for procedures, then surgery, then nothing but narcotic pain meds., and now finally more procedures. Next, he is sending me back to the surgeon. I will NEVER have surgery again (fused 3 lumbar disks) unless they tell me I will never walk without extreme pain again, or if I'm in an accident and unconsciousness, or if I have been off all narcotics for at least a month - frankly I might make it that long, but the intensity of the pain would make me as much of an idiot (can't think straight) as I was on all the meds. They had me on so much before the surgery that nothing they gave me in the hospital helped at all. After that he increased them and I was a walking zombie. I had to take MYSELF down to a level where I could bear the pain, but can be clear-headed enough to try and find a job, interact and participate in life, etc. Unfortunately, not only am I now in more pain (2 yrs. post-surgery) than I was before the 1st surgery, but my body has gotten used to the meds. and I am afraid I will have to increase them. To me, they are like taking poison. I do not see how people get hooked on them for fun!!! Both my family doc. 2 weeks ago, and the neurologist today told me to either go to the ER or get in to see him. He has refused to see me until my regularly-scheduled monthly visit. I am on disability and cannot afford to go to the ER. I haven't slept for more than 2 hours in 2 weeks (NO exaggeration) my pain in my right leg is almost to the point of child bearing (only it doesn't come and go .) to everyone out there - beware and research your pain mgt. doctors. When I looked mine up today, he is ONLY certified in Family Medicine, even though he has a whole slew of those capital letters after his name. I hope this helps someone. I'll do a new post with my own questions about pain meds. and which is more effective later....Thanks for reading
Last edited by kjkickem; 02-16-2009 at 12:03 PM.