Been reading this forum for some time. Decided to jump in and get a few opinions. Please forgive my lack of knowledge here. I'm new to the game but not to the pain...
I'm a 32 year old man and have been a very active athlete my entire life. Primarily basketball and then in the mid 90's I was very active in Wakeboarding while playing Bball.
At the age of 27 the shin splints kicked in hard. To the point where walking up stairs was difficult. I tried playing through the pain hoping my body would adjust but it didn't. Now five years later I haven't ran in 3 years and my attempts to run prior to that resulted in shin splint. These days walking barefoot for more than 5min is a challenge. Sore arches, sore heel, swelling in the arch and now pain in the hips and knees. Things appear to be getting worse.
My feet are overpronated and my understanding is that puts a lot of strain on your PT Tendon and this causes the shin splints and PT tendon to tear or rupture.
I've seen a few podiatrists, they gave me orthotics. These help but I still have pain after walking the dog and taking a shower to get ready for work. I went to a foot/ankle specialist at UCSD (University of Ca San Diego) and he said I'm in a degenerative state and that things will only get worse. I believe him because in a few short years my agile swift athletic body is now limited to light walks and elevating my feet...and I'm still young. I see things getting worse if I do nothing.
New MRI results are Friday. I'm sure my PT Tendon has deteriorated since my last MRI in May 2008. The last year I have been all but inactive and have been wearing orthotics.
Here is the deal. My OS thinks I'm a prime candidate for a tendon transfer, heal shave and achillies lengthening on both feet. I have read enough to know that the recovery is a long road. The question is this; do I do both at once or spread them out?
My attitude is that the goal is to be active and mobile. Why not take the shortest path. The shortest path appears to be doing both at once. Spreading the two surgeries out sounds like a two year recovery instead of a 1 year to 1.5 year recovery.
I have long term care insurance and qualify for a full time nurse until I'm on my feet. Why not take advantage of a nurse when I've paid for it?
Both feet at once= bad idea. The recovery from these procedures is 6mos to 18 months, meaning until around 5 mos. post op you want/need to baby the surgical foot. I think most docs want you to be one year PO before doing the second foot. I can't imagine how you would ease into a weight bearing state with both feet on the mend. But most people who have had these procedures will agree that the surgery gets them moving again in the long run. And if you don't do it you'll get worse so the sooner you get one done the better IMHO.
Good luck and make sure to use a doc who does these all the time as it is a challenging surgery to perform.
I would seriously doubt that any surgeon would agree to doing both feet at once. I wouldn't recommend it even if they did. When you start partial weight bearing the only way to do it with your good foot taking most of the weight and your crutches helping out. You couldn't even use crutches if both feet were affected, or at the very least it would be difficult. I had PT for four months following my surgery (began at 6 weeks) to regain strength and to learn how to walk properly and that was with a good foot helping out.
Best of luck whatever you decide to do. Keep us posted.
I personally would not have both feet done at once..
One at at time.. at least 6 mos apart. You will be able to go back to work and some semblence of life after a few weeks as long as your job is sedentary using a knee walker or crutches. You need the good foot to carry the healing one.
See if you can talk to someone who has had both done together b4 you agree to this. This will give you more perspective.
ICan'tRun, I think you could still get the cute nurse! Believe me, even doing one foot, you need someone at home to do so many things you won't be able to do at first - laundry, cook meals, help with showers (I see you smiling, stop it!), everything! I was off my feet for at least two weeks, only getting up to use the bathroom and attempting to shower. It's hard with only one foot, I couldn't even imagine how you'd do this surgery on both feet at once and then try to recover them at the same time.
Get one foot done, get the nurse to help you, then get the other foot done and get the nurse again!
OMG both feet at the same time? I don't know how you would do it. I am having surgery on my second foot 7 months from the first surgey and that is close enough. The recovery is long but you have to do it right in order to heal and move on with your life. Good luck with your decision.