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Old 08-17-2011, 10:53 PM   #1
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surgery to repair my fallen arch

I am planning on scheduling my surgery to repair my fallen arch in November. I am scared to death of the surgery and the pain after. How long do you think I will be comletely dependent on others due to the nwb? I was going to do in beginning of November, wondering if I will feel alot better by Thanksgiving. I just need reassurance that I am doing the right thing. Had 2 opinions by orthopedic surgeons. Both said the same thing. No one will tell you to do it, they say it is up to me. I am choosing to go with head foot and ankle surgeon in large philadelphia hosp. He says he does alot of these surgeries. I am grateful to hear all input.

Last edited by doggiewalkersha; 08-17-2011 at 10:55 PM. Reason: spellong errors

 
Old 08-18-2011, 05:54 AM   #2
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

Most people are NWB for 6-8 weeks but that is up to your doctor. I doubt you will be a happy camper by Thanksgiving. You surely will not be able to cook. Sitting at a table for more than a few minutes will be hard as when you put your foot down, it will swell and you will get a blood rush. If the person who is hosting Thanksgiving has a recliner near the table, you may be able to keep your foot elevated and participate in conversation from the recliner. You will definitely feel better than the first week post op but not exactly fantastic. If you are with friends and family, they will understand and work with you to make your Thanksgiving enjoyable. By the new year, you will not be dancing but definitely be feeling a lot better. I wouldn't put off the surgery because of Thanksgiving. It would be nice NOT to be on crutches when the snowy weather comes

 
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Old 08-18-2011, 06:12 AM   #3
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

I, too feared having this surgery. My foot had worsened inspite of conservative measures, but was not yet unbearable. I am a teacher, though, and it made the most sense to do the surgery this summer. I had surgery at the HSS in NY with a highly skilled surgeon. I was scheduled to be in the hospital for 2 days after, wound up being 3 till pain was managed. Since I live alone, I next went to rehab facility for a week, till I was able to handle myself mobility and painwise. Once home, I made out well, since I took a lot of the advice offered on this site. (See sticky post about tactics to help deal with nwb) Most helpful was a kneewalker and keeping foot elevated as much as possible. I also had a small fridge next to my bed and a food delivery service. I was in a splint 2 weeks, hard cast for 4, all nwb. I've been in a boot for 5 weeks, with probably 5 more ahead since I'll be starting work soon and am on my feet a lot. I've been pretty mobile, but since it is my right foot, unable to drive. I hope this gives you a snapshot of recovery. Feel free to ask questions. I will add that I believe the better shape you are in beforehand, goes a long way in helping the recovery process. I did a lot of water aerobics prior to my surgery date and lost quite a bit of weight, both which I believe have helped recovery be that much easier.

 
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Old 08-21-2011, 06:27 AM   #4
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

Thank you for your input. I ended up setting the date for December 1. I have 3 children an they will be finished with their fall sports by this time. I do not like the idea of being dependent on others so I figured I wouldn't have to get as many rides arranged for them.
I know I won't be feeling great by Christmas, but I figured I would be able to sit at the table by that time. Also, My husband and childred will be off the week for the holidays and can help me .
I figure I will be able to walk in a boot by the end of January and will be mobile to drive my kids to all their spring sports.
I can see how the shape of my foot and leg is changing because of this condition. I feat that if I continue to put it off, It will be more difficult to repair.
I know that I have a high tolerance for pain, but I am afraid of the pain that I am going to feel after this. Also wondering if I will be in alot less pain 2 weeks post op for my dr visit. The pffice is in the city and there is so parking outsiede. Wondering how I am going to get in the building.
Let me know your thoughts. Do you think I am crazy to do it so close to Christmas. I am a nurse an would have to work the holidays. I figured I would do it then so that I could be with my family.

 
Old 08-21-2011, 06:36 AM   #5
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

Thanks for your input. I am really worried about the pain. I am scheduled to stay overnight. How much help did you have when you got home? I figure for the first 2 weeks I will be in bed or on the couch? How long till you could get around on crutches, walker by yourself?
I am a nurse and figure I wil be out for 3-4 months. Luckily it is my left foot so I will be able to drive sooner.
Scheduled surgery for December 1. Having second thoughts that maybe not a good idea since so close to holidays. I guess it is never a good time.
I have a plan to get in better shape before the surgery. I just hope I don't chicken out. Sometimes I think should I just wear the arizona brace for the rest of my life????

 
Old 08-21-2011, 07:28 AM   #6
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

For me, the arizona brace helped for a few months and then even the brace didn't really help much. If you do the surgery December first, you will most likely be able to sit at the table for twenty minutes and then will have to elevate. If there is a recliner close to the table, it may allow you to elevate and also be with family and friends. I found that at three weeks, I was able to keep my foot down for a short amount of time and then had to elevate again due to swelling and blood rush. At three weeks, I sat at the end table with my foot elevated on a second chair. My surgery was done in NYC where the parking is horrible. We borowed a wheelchair to use when we were out of the house. My husband stopped in front of the building and helped me into the wheelchair (foot elevated). He helped me get into the lobby and then parked the car in a garage. Then we went in the elevator and to the Dr's office. I opted not to use crutches. I had knee surgery 6 years ago and did use crutches. One week post op, I tripped using the crutches and ended up fracturing my elbow. I had a knee walker and two wheeled walker to us in the house. My surgeons protocol was to keep flat foot patients in the hospital three nights. I had aspirate taken from my hip and stem cells were spun out and used to help the osteotomys heal. They kept patients in for three nights to monitor the illiac crest and control pain. The hospital was amazing. I know why they are rated the number one orthopedic hospital. When I went home, I took the maximum dose of rx pain meds for three or four days and then was able to start reducing the pain med. I was only taking pain meds right before bed at night after about 10 days. It is a long recovery but I am so happy that I bit the bullet. I am happy that I didn't wait so long that I needed fusions. Prior to surgery, I was in pain anytime I walked and now, I have my life back. The most important thing is to choose your surgeon wisely.

 
Old 08-21-2011, 05:17 PM   #7
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

I, too, went to HSS, but different doctor. After 3 days I went to subacute rehab and stayed a week. I was already up and about on my kneewalker for short bursts during that first week. At 2 weeks, I was able to use the kneewalker from hospital entrance on up to 5th floor casting room via elevator, without a problem. By 3.5-4 weeks I was feeling good enough to go out to lunch with family, and then friends. I just kept foot elevated in booth during meal. I had similar result as Roxy with AFO brace. First it was great, but that only lasted a few months despite major weight loss. I could have held out longer before surgery, but again, as a teacher, summer was best time for me. I do plan on starting the school year in 2 weeks, with boot, but b/c its my right, will be commuting with colleague.

Last edited by swimbunnie; 08-21-2011 at 05:21 PM.

 
Old 08-21-2011, 07:23 PM   #8
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

Thanks Roxygirl1 ans swimbunnie. I am having the surgery at Jefferson in Philadelphia. The surgeon did not mention the stem cell procedure to help in healing. You both have given me hope that this is tolerable and I will get thru it. Thanks for the helpful info. I am sure I will have lots more questions.
I

 
Old 08-22-2011, 05:34 PM   #9
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

You will do good...it is a hard recovery - emotionally as well as physically...but the benifits outweigh all of that!

I'm 16 weeks post op of calcaneal osteotomy, debridement posterior tibialis tendon, transfer flexor digitorum longus tendon to navicular, and gastrocmenius. The first 2 weeks my mom came and stayed with me. I spent most of that time asleep...in my bed or on the couch. The 3rd week was really hard on me - emotionally...I cried almost the whole time...not sure if it was pain or what...but I got through that with everyone here on the boards...

I'm a cost accountant...so I'm not on my feet too much...except that I work at a manufacturing site and it's a mile from one end of the plant to the other. I've been back onsite for about 2.5 weeks now. I'm only allowed to work 1/2 days there and then 1/2 at home. I have to use my wheel about (this is a must...they are wonderful!)...to get into and out of the buildings. I was able at about 5-6 weeks start working from home - on a lap top lying down.

Read the sticky notes on how to prepare...those really help!

Good luck!

 
Old 08-23-2011, 09:45 AM   #10
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

It's definitely a big adjustment after surgery. It seems most doctors just emphasize that you will be non wb for a few weeks. They don't truly paint a true picture of how your life temporarily changes. I had very bad nerve pains a week after surgery that made it so hard to sleep. Getting up to the bathroom was a huge chore and I could only stand for a few minutes before I had to sit. My mom made all my meals for me because I had no way to do it myself. She also drove me everywhere because I couldn't manage going anywhere unassisted. I did not start cooking for myself until week 14 and only then was I able to do it with one crutch. At week 15 I was allowed to drive again and boy did that feel good. This is a very humbling experience for anyone who undergoes this.
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Flat foot reconstruction surgery 3/1/2011~ Grateful I had this surgery and feeling better every week!

 
Old 06-05-2012, 08:23 PM   #11
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

Thank You so much for your input. I ended up cancelling my surgery scheduled for this past December. I went for another opinion and decided to have another Arizona brace made and try and wait for a while. I have good days and bad days, but it usually bothers me if not in the brace. I am going back in July to see Dr. You feedback sounds positive but I am still afraid to do it.

 
Old 06-09-2012, 01:38 PM   #12
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

can you tell me if you wouldn't mid it would be very much appreciated...i have fallen arches sway side to side when walk no ballance and cant walk far without pain etc..there seems to ligament dammage to is probable...do you know the difference as some people have anthroscopic fusion which is fuseing joints togeether which stops the side to side motion which would help me but then i read about calcaneal osteotomy what is it and what does it do

 
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Old 09-24-2012, 06:29 PM   #13
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Re: fallen arch reconstruction surgery

Quote:
Originally Posted by anon35 View Post
can you tell me if you wouldn't mid it would be very much appreciated...i have fallen arches sway side to side when walk no ballance and cant walk far without pain etc..there seems to ligament dammage to is probable...do you know the difference as some people have anthroscopic fusion which is fuseing joints togeether which stops the side to side motion which would help me but then i read about calcaneal osteotomy what is it and what does it do
Anon35: I personally had two fusions done in my ankle. I was having a lot of issues after my arch started collapsing. I had the talonavicular and subtalar fusions along with achilles lengthening. It has restricted my tilting in motion as well as the motion side to side. I had the surgery in April of this year. I have had a set back but it was not in part of the surgery. It was injured by a PTA. I wasn't having any balance issues but the pain was started to affect my everyday life. It was not an arthroscopic surgery. I have two larger size incisions.

The knee walker is a total lifesaver!! I suggest it to anyone having this surgery. I spent two nights in the hospital for pain management. Like the others, the time with your foot down is very limited for the first couple weeks. After that the time down increases as tolerated. I could tell when I had mine down for too long. It started to swell and my cast got tight. The knee walker gives you that extra mobility to be able to work in the kitchen or to do some chores.

Showering proved to be my hard point. I kept getting casts wet despite having a sleeve over it! I got a seat for in my shower. Was rough having my leg down for that amount of time but it was well worth it. I agree with everyone that the first couple of weeks are the toughest.

I started weaning myself off of the pain medication after the second week as I didn't feel as though I needed it anymore. This was a nightmare. It made me soooo emotional! I was crying all the time. Once you get past that point all is okay but it is rough at first. Guess that's my bodys way of telling me that I was becoming dependent on it. Definitely do NOT want to be an addict.

I hope some of this helps you somehow. Take care and don't be afraid!

 
Old 09-25-2012, 11:30 PM   #14
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Re: surgery to repair my fallen arch

Was just checking over some of the posts today and realized that your surgery was today. I had a subtalar fusion with achilles tendon lengthening and tendon transfer more than a year ago to repair one of my flat feet. It has been a long road but I am very happy with the outcome. Just wanted to wish you luck.

oops... just realized this post is for Ginger62 who posted in this thread and not DoggieWalker who started it...don't know how to move it so...if you are following Ginger62, good luck

Last edited by jlynn66; 09-25-2012 at 11:41 PM.

 
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