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Old 06-19-2012, 02:22 AM   #1
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Unhappy upcoming surgery, help! need info

Hi I am not new to these boards but I haven't posted much either. I have surgery on Aug 24th for pttd and an osteocondral defect , two different surgeries at the same time. I am 59 y/o and am really anxious about the recovery time. I work full time and am worried about how long it will be before I can return to work. I have a job that does require a lot of up and down from my desk also some walking up and down the hallways. My surgeon said around 4 months but I am thinking I should put in for 4-6 months for my leave from work, I have to fill out disability forms soon and I want my dr to make sure I get the right amount of time approved . I would rather have too much time and come back early than have to request more time after my leave is up. I know that there are lots of folks here that are familiar with this procedure and wanted to know how long you were out of work. I hope you can help with this question. Of course then I have a million more!!!!!

 
Old 06-19-2012, 07:33 AM   #2
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

What kind of surgery are you having/ The full OATS or a arthoscopy surgery? The recoop time will depend on that. Do you know how big your defect is?

 
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Old 06-19-2012, 07:55 PM   #3
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

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Originally Posted by dizzizzi99 View Post
What kind of surgery are you having/ The full OATS or a arthoscopy surgery? The recoop time will depend on that. Do you know how big your defect is?
I don't know exactly how big it is but he isn't filling it in unless post op I have pain and then he will do cadavor bone. He is doing the defect arthroscopic but the he is also doing a tendon transfer and a calcaneal osteotomy at the same time.

 
Old 06-20-2012, 07:07 AM   #4
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

I would go for the longer 6 months if they let you. I agree with the thought of always returning early, plus you may find it easier to start in part time and coming back early for half days may be better. I have not had the calcaneal osteotomy but have had the orthoscopic and tendon transfer. The recoop may be more brutal than you think. I needed about three months without the calcaneal part. You may need someone else to tell you how that is. The main problem is the swelling will continue for quite a few months after. 6 to 8 or even more. So with a job that requires up and down and walking will cause alot of swelling.

 
Old 06-20-2012, 08:15 PM   #5
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzizzi99 View Post
I would go for the longer 6 months if they let you. I agree with the thought of always returning early, plus you may find it easier to start in part time and coming back early for half days may be better. I have not had the calcaneal osteotomy but have had the orthoscopic and tendon transfer. The recoop may be more brutal than you think. I needed about three months without the calcaneal part. You may need someone else to tell you how that is. The main problem is the swelling will continue for quite a few months after. 6 to 8 or even more. So with a job that requires up and down and walking will cause alot of swelling.
That's what I thought, when I get the disability paperwork I will make sure to ask the surgeon to put 4-6months on the time off needed. I appreciate your info and any other suggestions you may have. He is putting a screw in the heel , that part grosses me out for sure. My biggest dilema for now is that my bedroom and bathroom are on the second floor of my house. I don't have a downstairs bath but I don't want to be confined to my room. I was thinking of getting a commode and putting it in the dining room downstairs , it is closed off with doors so it is private and no one uses that room. I could stay on the couch and get up once and a while. what did yo do?

 
Old 06-21-2012, 05:40 AM   #6
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

I fortunately had a bathroom on the main level. The bedroom was on the second level. The first three surgeries I literally crawled up the stairs. The last time I did somthing odd. I cleaned up the garage and put a bed out there. (We have an attached garage.) There was just one big step up and down, but I used a bar stool and sat on that and then swung my legs around to whatever level I needed to be on. I made extreme use of a wheelchair. I had 4 surgeries in 5 years and found crutches to be exhausting. some people have great use with the knee scooter. I had never seen a scooter until after my second one so I never tried it. It just made getting a drink and making dinner alot easier. I have a small house and still used it alot, plus you can go outside and get out of the couch rutt.
You can start making some extra food now and freezing it if you will be on your own after? Do you have family? Did you get a shower chair?

 
Old 06-22-2012, 04:12 PM   #7
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzizzi99 View Post
I fortunately had a bathroom on the main level. The bedroom was on the second level. The first three surgeries I literally crawled up the stairs. The last time I did somthing odd. I cleaned up the garage and put a bed out there. (We have an attached garage.) There was just one big step up and down, but I used a bar stool and sat on that and then swung my legs around to whatever level I needed to be on. I made extreme use of a wheelchair. I had 4 surgeries in 5 years and found crutches to be exhausting. some people have great use with the knee scooter. I had never seen a scooter until after my second one so I never tried it. It just made getting a drink and making dinner alot easier. I have a small house and still used it alot, plus you can go outside and get out of the couch rutt.
You can start making some extra food now and freezing it if you will be on your own after? Do you have family? Did you get a shower chair?

 
Old 06-23-2012, 06:13 AM   #8
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Hi Prico,

I had pttd surgery (tendon transfer w/ bone graft, achilles lengthening, oestomy, and cleaning out bone spurs and scar tissue from the talus) on May 16. I started back working from home after about 2 1/2 weeks and began going into the office this past Monday, working 4 days at the office and one at home. After the surgery I was in a huge, heavy cast for three weeks so work was totally out of the question. My doc does stitch removal after three weeks then instead of a cast she had me go right into a boot. I have been having some difficulty with the oestomy incision closing, it seemed like it was on the verge of infection so I am now on an antibiotic and I take the boot off as much as possible to let the incision get air.

As for your bathroom question, I too have only a second floor bathroom. As much as I would have preferred not to, I decided to get a commode and put it in the enclosed porch off my living room. Let me tell you, it's one of the best decisions I could have made. In the mornings (on days when I am working at home) I stay upstairs until after I showered, with a shower chair which is also an essential, and take care of my more pressing toileting needs, if you catch my drift. Then once I am downstairs I use the commode.

I did get a knee scooter which is so worth it, but be careful. I was warned I might get overconfident and end up taking a spill on it, and sure enough on Thursday I tipped over, putting weight on my repaired foot. Luckily I had the boot on and am 5 weeks out of surgery, so although it hurt I didn't do any damage as far as I can tell.

As for taking leave, if I could have afforded it I would have stayed out much longer (it is appalling how we treat employees with medical issues in this country, but that's another post). I am not in a very physically demanding job, and yet working four days this week really knocked me for a loop. So take all the time you can get.

 
Old 06-26-2012, 08:23 PM   #9
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Unhappy Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by ljturner View Post
Hi Prico,

I had pttd surgery (tendon transfer w/ bone graft, achilles lengthening, oestomy, and cleaning out bone spurs and scar tissue from the talus) on May 16. I started back working from home after about 2 1/2 weeks and began going into the office this past Monday, working 4 days at the office and one at home. After the surgery I was in a huge, heavy cast for three weeks so work was totally out of the question. My doc does stitch removal after three weeks then instead of a cast she had me go right into a boot. I have been having some difficulty with the oestomy incision closing, it seemed like it was on the verge of infection so I am now on an antibiotic and I take the boot off as much as possible to let the incision get air.

As for your bathroom question, I too have only a second floor bathroom. As much as I would have preferred not to, I decided to get a commode and put it in the enclosed porch off my living room. Let me tell you, it's one of the best decisions I could have made. In the mornings (on days when I am working at home) I stay upstairs until after I showered, with a shower chair which is also an essential, and take care of my more pressing toileting needs, if you catch my drift. Then once I am downstairs I use the commode.

I did get a knee scooter which is so worth it, but be careful. I was warned I might get overconfident and end up taking a spill on it, and sure enough on Thursday I tipped over, putting weight on my repaired foot. Luckily I had the boot on and am 5 weeks out of surgery, so although it hurt I didn't do any damage as far as I can tell.

As for taking leave, if I could have afforded it I would have stayed out much longer (it is appalling how we treat employees with medical issues in this country, but that's another post). I am not in a very physically demanding job, and yet working four days this week really knocked me for a loop. So take all the time you can get.
Can I ask, how did you get up and down the stairs?

 
Old 06-26-2012, 10:01 PM   #10
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Smile Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzizzi99 View Post
I fortunately had a bathroom on the main level. The bedroom was on the second level. The first three surgeries I literally crawled up the stairs. The last time I did somthing odd. I cleaned up the garage and put a bed out there. (We have an attached garage.) There was just one big step up and down, but I used a bar stool and sat on that and then swung my legs around to whatever level I needed to be on. I made extreme use of a wheelchair. I had 4 surgeries in 5 years and found crutches to be exhausting. some people have great use with the knee scooter. I had never seen a scooter until after my second one so I never tried it. It just made getting a drink and making dinner alot easier. I have a small house and still used it alot, plus you can go outside and get out of the couch rutt.
You can start making some extra food now and freezing it if you will be on your own after? Do you have family? Did you get a shower chair?
I do have a family , I live with my husband and my oldest son who is 27, plus my doggie. My husband will do anything he can to help but he has to work also. my son seems to freak out whenever I need attention. He likes his mommy to be well. He would like it if I went to my daughters house and recuperated there. So much for taking care of me. I might consider doing that since I think daughters usually have more compassion but I don't want to leave my dog. and I couldn't bring him with me. I thought about going to her house for the weekends maybe but I'm not sure about transportation. How do you ride in a car with the cast on? Did you have to sit in the back seat and put your leg up for the ride home after surgery? I haven't gotten a shower chair yet but I will be and also a scooter and a comode for the downstairs. I want to be as prepared as possible, that is why I came on here and you guys are so helpful, I will be really glad to have you around during my recovery for sure.

 
Old 06-27-2012, 01:11 AM   #11
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Hi Prico54! I am in the same boat as you. I saw my 3rd OS today....the first two referred me on as they would not touch this type of surgery. The OS described my surgery much like yours so I found this thread very informative! Thanks to all on it.
I am 47 and run a small restaurant....I do it all there and am on my feet all day. I don't know how I will manage the next 6 months but I can not keep doing this...some nights I would just as soon cut my foot off !! I am looking at having this surgery the end of Aug or in Sept. I am curious about what my foot/ankle will look like when this is all done. The OS says it will look a lot better than it does now but I am worried it may look more disformed. I would love to be able to wear some fun shoes....at least to be able to wear a dress for special occasions. I know that sounds like a silly concern. My main concern is ending this pain and wanting to get better function back....but I am curious....Anyone care to share??

and on the stairs....I think I will sit on my butt and scoot up & down till it gets easier....I have broken both legs before and walking up & down with crutches at least initially scares me...the thought of excruciating pain of falling....EEEK!!
Good Luck and please let me know how it goes!

 
Old 06-27-2012, 08:31 AM   #12
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by prico54 View Post
Can I ask, how did you get up and down the stairs?
I am scooting up and down the stairs on my behind. It's not ideal but it seems the easiest and safest way for now. Once I get to the top of the stairs, I use the side of my bathtub to get to a sitting position. I have two sets of crutches so I keep one in the bathroom and one downstairs. I do the same thing going down as I do going up, I lower myself down to the floor from the side of the tub and go from there.

For the first week or so I was worried about my left shoulder, as it started to ache from this method, but that seems to have calmed itself down as I have gotten stronger in my upper body.

By the way I am 46, and I will say that when I fractured my right ankle 15 years ago and went through a similar recovery, it was a lot easier!

 
Old 06-27-2012, 08:45 AM   #13
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

I crawled up and down on my knees for the first 2. Which was bad cause my knees hurt ( i'm just old) Then I had the first OATS where they took part of my knee and had to do the butt first method. I asked about family cause after my very first sugery the kids went to school and hubby went to work and I went to make a cup of tea and realized I could carry anything on crutches, let alone something hot. I ended up slowly moving all my chairs and making a path that I could put the cup on and then crutch and reach the next one. It is a bit easier if you got someone to carry stuff for at least part of the day. I had to heavily rely on kids and husband for laundry cause it is in our basement, after the first surgery I fell down that flight of stairs so I did not go up and down them for quite some time after that. I had 2 grade school kids at that time. Dinner was also much easier with the wheelchair. Make sure you check how it is to get on and off the toilet when you are up on that level. It is very difficult with one leg and if the is not something sturdy near by you may need to get a walker just to brace your self. You don't want to rip the roller holder off the wall.
Tenderfoot, A fellow resturant person!!! I cooked for 30 years. I miss it very much. I totally know how hard it is to work in a boot and how horrible it hurts at night. I have completly gone through the want to chop it off mentality. My surgeries are very successful but I still do not wear fancy shoes. I only where flats but I do believe it is the just way my legs are. My problems are not due to any sort of injury, it was a birth defect issue compunded by 30 years of kitchen floors and 70 hour weeks. And at this point I just am very glad just to walk, I don't really care what kind of shoes anymore. But I do believe my problems started in 2005 so it has been many years of struggle to get back to normal.
I don't think the scars are very visable and I don't think I look deformed at all. Most people I meet have no idea what I have been through. I don't even limp or waddle anymore! I used to feel like a penguin. I know there are people who wear heels again, run and everything like they never had any issues.

 
Old 06-27-2012, 10:06 PM   #14
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by ljturner View Post
I am scooting up and down the stairs on my behind. It's not ideal but it seems the easiest and safest way for now. Once I get to the top of the stairs, I use the side of my bathtub to get to a sitting position. I have two sets of crutches so I keep one in the bathroom and one downstairs. I do the same thing going down as I do going up, I lower myself down to the floor from the side of the tub and go from there.

For the first week or so I was worried about my left shoulder, as it started to ache from this method, but that seems to have calmed itself down as I have gotten stronger in my upper body.

By the way I am 46, and I will say that when I fractured my right ankle 15 years ago and went through a similar recovery, it was a lot easier!
Thanks for the info, I am a bit older 59 and although I don't feel that old it seem like its going to take a toll on me. I am getting pretty freaked out about this mobility thing for sure. I will get the knee scooter and I guess I should have a walker and maybe an extra set of crutches. This is my major concern. I certainly don't have any kiddos to take care of and my older son and hubby will do what they can. I also have my 3 grown daughters that will come by and do whatever. so it is mostly the getting around and the pain that is on my mind right now. counting down the days as well. I have a vacation for 2weeks the last of july and I will be going to maine. I go every year at least 2 or 3 times. This was the reason the surgery is aug 24th, I couldn't let them take my summer away after all. They called me right after my surgical appt and left a message that they wanted to schedule me for july 6th, uh no! that would be the worst summer of my life, no thanks. thats why it is so far away, I chose the date. You never know how many summers you might have after all.......

 
Old 06-28-2012, 12:07 AM   #15
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Re: upcoming surgery, help! need info

Quote:
Originally Posted by tenderfoot View Post
Hi Prico54! I am in the same boat as you. I saw my 3rd OS today....the first two referred me on as they would not touch this type of surgery. The OS described my surgery much like yours so I found this thread very informative! Thanks to all on it.
I am 47 and run a small restaurant....I do it all there and am on my feet all day. I don't know how I will manage the next 6 months but I can not keep doing this...some nights I would just as soon cut my foot off !! I am looking at having this surgery the end of Aug or in Sept. I am curious about what my foot/ankle will look like when this is all done. The OS says it will look a lot better than it does now but I am worried it may look more disformed. I would love to be able to wear some fun shoes....at least to be able to wear a dress for special occasions. I know that sounds like a silly concern. My main concern is ending this pain and wanting to get better function back....but I am curious....Anyone care to share??

and on the stairs....I think I will sit on my butt and scoot up & down till it gets easier....I have broken both legs before and walking up & down with crutches at least initially scares me...the thought of excruciating pain of falling....EEEK!!
Good Luck and please let me know how it goes!
the funny thing is even though he is doing the 3 different surgeries, there are other sugical problems with that same foot. He only wants to address the most important ones now. I also have a pretty bad bunion and an accessory navicular which is an extra bone in that foot. My friends think I should just have the whole foot amputated and a new one transplanted , makes sense huh"? I surely didn't hurry into to this uninformed either. I saw a local orthopedic surgeon 5 years ago and he diagnosed me immediately from the xraY he took in his office. He told me all about how complex this surgery is and he had me terrified. So much so that I never followed up with him and waited all this time. I heard of a great doc in another city about 45 miles from here that is affilliated with my hospital and made an appt to see him. It took 4 months to get in to see him but it was worth it. He is so sweet., even though he told me the exact same thing the other dr told me it was easier to accept what he was going to do. He explained the whole process to my hubby who was totally confused and concerned. So I do trust him and am not nervous about that part. I don't envy you having to run your own business being on your feet, I won't have to deal with that. I do have a desk job, unfortunately I have to get up and down constantly so it won't be good for the swelling apparently. I can take 6months off if I need to and I think I will so that is what I am preparing for. Aug 24th is my date, maybe we will have the same , who knows

 
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