OMG i am having to write this again i don't know what happened to my first attempt.
I am 2 months post surgery and my major concern at the moment is FOOT WEAR! I am going on holiday soon and cannot fit into any of my shoes. This is due to the ball under my big toes (i had surgery on both feet) which are quite meaty to say the least. All my remaining toes have been pused over to the side from my big toe so i have to wear inserts for sometime untill the big toes are compeletely set and then eventually the other toes will apparently come into line.
I am currently still wearing the shoes you get for protecting the plaster (oh not a good look) so welcome any sensible suggestions. Also i have noticed a lot of people suffering with swelling and pain etc, and yes it will take a good year for most people and unfortunately some have ongoing problems for years. I have been suffering from the side effects of the pain killers i was taking ie insomnia, irrritable stomach and loss of perception. Now i am on sleeping tablets, who would of thought that this kind of surgery could mess you up so much. Not being able to drive or get around, stuck in doors, it is very difficult but you have to keep positive and things in prospective. Because there will be light at the end of it all. Cheers
Hi i am having the same problem i am 7 weeks post op and i cannot fit into any of my shoes. it is very frustating i thought after the surgery shoe shopping would be fun but im not looking forward to it. Iam going back into hospital today to have the pin taken out of my second toe so maybe then i can start exercising better on that foot which will enable the swelling to decrease so i can get a shoe on. How have you been lately any better with the shoe dilema?
I was still wearing the surgery shoe at two months per doctors orders, as well as a silicone spacer. After 10 weeks, I was allowed to wear regular shoes, but I really only wore crocs or flip flops for about a month, then I wore a pair of sneakers a size bigger then my normal ones for another few months. Borrow a pair of sneakers, or go buy a pair of wide widths, a bigger size then normal just to wear for the healing period. I also had to loosen the laces on my surgery foot, and put an insole in the other foot so they fit ok. After about 6 months most of my shoes fit again.
Well had the pin taken out not much different in the foot 2 days later. Went shopping yesterday and so depressed nothing fit. I must have gone in 5 shoe shops and even their wide fitting shoes were a little to tight for comfort. I went into the sports shop ladies wide fitting sneakers didnt fit and the mens looked like boats on my feet. My neighbour came around later and found a pair of hush puppy velcroe sandals she had had for quite a while that were very wide and bingo they were a good fit so it seems they will be what i will be wearing for quite a while. Now there is still the problem of my stiff big toe.
Hi earthworm went to physio last friday and go again this friday. My left foot is ok i can bend the toe enough to get by but the right toe is still very swollen and stiff. he told me to bend it with my hand as far as it will go and hold for a count of ten . I seem to have trouble walking its as though their is something under the ball of my foot and i am walking as though i have a limp. when i walk slow in the house i can manage ok but when outside i have a lot of trouble because i have to pick up the pace. I have been out this morning for xrays and to return my wheelchair and when i got back both my feet were swollen the right one like a balloon and i was only out a couple of hours. I am now elevating and icing them. I see my OS next Tuesday. The pin was taken out of my second toe but my toe still sticks up like it did when the pin was in it He has fused it do you think it will ever lay flat like my other toes. I do warm my toe up before exercise but it is very painfull while doing them and i cant see it ever loosening . up. I know i sound all doom and gloom but that is the way i feel at the moment.Thanks for your concern.
First, don't worry. You can't expect both feet to progress the same way. I mentioned before that my feet weren't healing the same way too. Left foot being better than the right eventhough it was exactly the same procedure without additional works to the right foot. Really, sounds like you may just have a bit more scar tissues in the right foot. You had more things done to the right foot, right?
I totally know what you mean about the walking. When you are at home, you could concentrate better and take your time to walk "properly" but when you are out, you just don't have the luxury to do so. Then your feet ended up walking funny and hurting bad later on. Remember you were asking me before (I think it was you) when I explained that my toes were still kinda "floating" off the floor and there weren't any "grips" to the floor naturally? I am sure you feel the same way now. I really don't think you have to worry and feeling down. Take your time and massage them. Of course gentler on parts that hurt, but massage them all over. I did mine as often as I could and at least every 3 hours, about 30 minutes each sessions with the massage and the bending of toes etc. The scars just need to breakdown which is what contributes to the stiffness and swelling. I read somewhere that the time your foot has been out of commission will be the same time it takes to get it back to normal. So now you just need to condition it back to normal and it will take time.
I am 13 weeks post op as of today. My feet are getting better everyday. Some days are slightly more problematic than others. I know for sure it has not reached normalcy yet cuz I still can't walk bare feet! I still have pain when I walk even more so at the end of the day where the heels and other parts of the feet hurt as well. I finally realized that I wasn't walking properly because I kept avoiding the balls of my feet subconsciously, then my heels starting to hurt like heck! So I ended up going to a shoestore few days ago and bought myself a rockport casual shoes which have one and a half inch heels! lol That forced me to rely less on my heels so I noticed that walking was slightly less painful. Yesterday I noticed that I could walk a little faster with those shoes on. Of course they still swell but it's just less and less. Now I am starting to see the tendons of my big toes more obvious (you know, those lines running the top of your foot).
So don't despair, it will take time and most feet don't heal equally. Just keep massaging the scar tissues and do your flexing exercises as often as you can. Take good care!!
Thanks Earthworm for you kind words of wisdom you always make it sound very positive and things will go back to some normality if not normal again.
I have been doing what you said about the regular massaging even though my right foot has not progressed much in five days. When i look at my xrays that i had taken a few days ago the L and R foot have slightly different hardware. The R has the 2 screws.and there is also a stapler just where the joint is that joins the toe to the foot. Do you think this is the problem of the very stiff big toe because of the stapler. The L only has the 2 screws and i have no trouble with stiffness. Would you say the OS performed the Aikin on the R only.? All these questions im sorry but you always seem to have a realistic answer . I mentioned before that when the pin was taken out of the second toe the toe is slightly raised above my other toes , do you think the toe will lie flat again?
I went out yesterday after a couple of hours i could feel my feet getting very hot and swelling i had a bit of a rest then carried on for another couple of hours and i noticed the swelling had gone down a bit do you think they only swell so much and then cant swell anymore ,anyway when i got home they wernt as bad as i thought they would be . When i walk barefeet my heels hurt so much and i limp i suppose my weight does sub concientally not want to go on the ball of foot. I will look up the Rockport casual shoes you mentioned and see if i can get a pair as not much fits the R foot to accomadate when the swelling starts. Thanks as always.
Things will go back to normal but it just takes time, which unfortunately we get impatient as one foot seems to be so much better than the other. So I can understand your worries in this regard. Yup, you definitely have the Akin done on the R foot. And that's probably why your right foot is giving you more problems because there was just more assault to that foot which would also create more scar tissues cuz you had two bones cut on the first metatarsal (big bone) and the phalange (toe bone) and on top of that a hammer toe fix right next to it. So ya...that would explain your complaint of the R foot being uncooperative compared to your L.
With regard to your second toe. Someone who had hammertoe surgery done can probably give you a better answer. But from what I know, there is still swelling on the ball, and you haven't used or moved that toe in what...2 months? So it will likely be stiff as well and lifted off the floor due to the swelling and scar tissues. With time, that should go back to it's normal position as well.
It's good you took time to rest a bit between your walk. Don't overdo it. Your feet are healing eventhough to your eyes they may look the same. The swelling will slowly reduce day by day but you must keep up your work of massaging them, flex them and ice them(may be necessary if you have been walking on them for a while, it will really calm them down fast). Don't forget, you are putting all your weight on those poor feet which haven't been used like they used to. And that's after you went in there and cut them up and put them back together etc. They have not only been "assaulted" but the biomechanics of them have changed as well. So the road to recovery will be rocky, more so for some, may be easier for others. In any case, I think you are doing fantastic.
You need to find a pair of sneakers/tennis shoes (yeah..I know..easier said than done!) to wear inside your house. I so know what you mean about walking on the heels. I was lucky to have a pair already at home so I didn't have to go through the hassle of looking for one. I believe you got a pair of hush puppies from your friend, no? Please do not attempt to walk barefeet. Because of all the swelling, the floor isn't the right medium to accommodate all that pronounced contours of your feet, then you ended up walking on your heels and the outside of your feet which you only realize when they start to hurt like the dickens.
Honestly, the Rockport's ok. I just happened to find one with the height I needed and open-toes soft bands on top which is not rubbing on my scars. From what you are saying now, I think the wraparound sneakers are safer for you because you need the support and the protection.
How often do you go to your Physio? Do they incorporate the deep tissue massages for you as well? When you do your own, really dig in to the point it gets slightly uncomfortable (don't over do it, but your body will tell you), not just normal skin rubbing on the surface ok? Really work them with your fingers.
Sorry for being long winded again :-D Take good care of yourself. Cheers!
glad to say that i feel so much better 3+ months on. Found some wide fitting shoes and was able to go on my hols feeling a little normal. Had lots of swelling in both feet and did have to resort to a wheelchair. Come back and my feet have gone down apart from ankles. And out of curiosity i tried on a pair of my old shoes and managed to get it on my left foot. My right foot has not gone the same was as the left and my big toe is sticking up from the ball of my foot. So i am back at the hospital this week and i am sure i will have to have my toe broken again so that it can be set correctly. i am sleeping alot better thanks to good old horlicks!
iam doing house work and driving and that is the biggest thing being able to get out of the house when i feel like it. will keep you posted, all the best to you all.
Well thought i had my OS appointment today and when i looked on the calender yesterday it is next week ,silly me i dont know what it is with me but i do seem to get appointment dates mixed up in my head good job i write everything down.
I have PT every week and i do think it helps a lot. He does not do any intensive massage Earthworm but seems to concentrate on the movement of my big toes, scrunching the towel. My L foot can do this quite easily. With my R foot i have to stand holding onto a chair and with my R foot big toe and second toe pressed firmly on the flooor my L foot has to move one step forward and one step back as if i am walking , bottom tucked in and back straight, relaxed [its easier said than done] but when ive done this for about 20 times he has me walk up and down the corridor and my walk seems to be so much better.
I have noticed on these boards whether it be a coincidence or not that it seems to be the RIGHT foot giving people more grief, has anyone else noticed this?:
I have not driven the car since my op so it is now 9 weeks, i think i will be a little nervous when the time comes i have to get the ok from my doctor so now will have to wait until next week. It can be a little frustrating relying on other people to ferry you around to appointments , .oh just have to be patient .
I noticed yesterday that my incision on my L foot was a little bit tender in one particular section and rubbing on the strap on my sandal i hope it dosnt give me any grief, do you think rubbing maybe aloe vera straight out of the garden might help i think i have heard it mention on these boards before?
Dancingt congrats on getting into one of your old shoes. Sorry to hear about the problem with the toe does it stick up a lot do you have pt on it? My big toe still sticks up but my pt recons it will come down with exercise and when the swelling subsides. Im keeping my fingers crossed it will anyway.
Earthworm your such an inspiratation you make everything seem possible i love reading your posts. i hope everything is going ok for you.
Just want to see how your feet are doing lately. Sorry I haven't been in touch as I had been tracking across Greece recently testing my feet once more :-) I hope your feet are doing much better and the stiffness is going away. Drop us a note to let us know how things are. Take good care!!
Hi Earthworm welcome back... Yes the stifness is subsiding it is now 12 weeks and the mobility of the right foot is getting better. i still have pt each week and i know this helps a lot, although when i come home my feet are so sore i just want to rest them. i still have the problem with the second toe sticking up after the hammertoe correction, at the moment i have it taped down to see if that will help.The big toe has a lot more movement in it now.
Afew weeks ago i had a sensitive area on my left foot where the bunion used to be on the incision, it was very painfull to put a sandal on and i had to put bandaids on to stop the sandal from rubbing . i knocked this foot under the table and i thought i must have opened up the scar a little. Anyway instead of it getting better with time it got worse. i saw the doctor and he said not to worry it would heal. 12 days later on my pt app i was limping and guess what it was, an 8 inch piece of thread that they use for stitching had been left in. Thankyou to my pt for seeing this, he removed it and 3 days later i was 100% better.
hey Pearl...I was just about to suggest it's probably your sutures that's causing you all those problems! voila! it's good that it's out finally! The dissolvable sutures normally can take up to 4-6 months to resolve. Some people deal with it better than others, and yours was trying to spit itself out lol. I am not so good in that department. I can feel it right under my skin, but it's deep enough that I do not want my skin scraped to remove them! So I am hoping they will dissolve soon enough on their own, but at times they do feel a bit itchy and such.
Really glad to hear your right foot is doing better. Just be patient! I know, easier said than done. My feet are doing better little by little everyday :-) I found out recently that when I drink red wine, my feet turn into pig trotters!! They get so huge and red and angry lol Being asian, it is not news to me, but my feet were never affected this way...so the lesson is not to wear heels if drinking, cuz I would have to walk bear feet home! lol I now only wear at least inch and a half shoes now as they help me to stay off my heels. With all the pain and worries in the past, I am just happy I had them done and I don't regret it!
So keep up the good work!! Patience can really pay off :-) Take good care! Great to hear from you!
Earthworm do you think my second toe that had the hammertoe fixed is making me still limp. I have mentioned before that it sticks up above my other toes and when pushed down with my hand just springs back up.My big toe on that foot now sits a lot better than it did. When i walk i tend to walk more on the outside of that foot maybe because the toe does not sit down . If this is the problem do you think my toe could be fixed.
I am trying to remember if your second toe had the pin in after hammertoe surgery or not. Do you know which exact technique was done on your second toe to correct for hammertoe? So far, sounds like you have a "floating toe" which unfortunately is one of the possible complications. Is that second toe both stiff and floaty? What does your PT say about it? Any exercises gear toward mainly for the second toe?
I am not a foot expert, but from what I know, our big toe is the one that bears most of our weight and also doing the weight shifting. So I can't really imagine you having the tendency of walking on the outside of your foot just because of that second toe. Someone who had 2nd hammertoe surgery would be able to enlighten you better than I can. What did your OS say about your concern? I can understand your worry here, and I know it is frustrating. But bear in mind that it does take time, and some people take longer than others. Find out from your OS what technique was used so that you can understand the recovery process better as well as the appropriate expectations. Don't worry too much. Let's walk one step at a time.
My second toe did have the pin inserted for 7 weeks before it was pulled out.
The toe is fused up to the first ridge in the toe but seems to sit up above the other toes on an angle. When i push it down with my hand it is quite rigid and pops back up.I have been taping it down as the physio told me now for a week. It hasnt made any difference but i will continue. When i sit i push and hold it down and stretch it out as much as i can. My second toe on each foot is slightly longer than the big toe.
I phoned my OS yesterday and he still says to do the exercises he said there is surgery that would help it by shortening of the toe, i really do not want more surgery as that would be more time of work and im not sure whether i could cope. I do not know what type of hammertoe sugery he did i thought there was only one type. He also said with the big toe still a little swollen it might take a little longer and did not think it would be that causing me to limp a little. He said to make an appointment in 4-6 weeks to see him again. So i have to really concentrate when i walk on that foot that i connect the toe to the floor, and do the bending toe exercises.
Sorry for the delay. This is my third attempt at sending this. I was getting so frustrated as the first time I sent, the whole thing disappeared cuz the time was too long. The second time I tried to sent, the explorer crashed. So hopefully third time is the charm lol
There are actually many different techniques to correct hammertoe, but three are commonly performed, or a combination of them in other cases. Based on your description, sounds like you had arthrodesis which the entire joint was removed and pin used to fixate for a period of time to correct your hammertoe. If that is the case, the possible complications of that is floating toe and rigidity. I completely understand your reservation about thinking of having another surgery to correct the outcome of the first surgery which you are still trying to recuperate from. It is definitely very frustrating, but the best you can do now is do what your PT recommends and wait for your next appointment with your OS.
On the other hand, don't forget that you had a lot of work done to that foot, not only the bunionectomy, but the Atkin of the big toe and then the hammertoe. So your healing process could have been compounded by all that's going on and may take longer time to heal. The swelling and scar tissues could play a major role in that as well. I only had bunionectomy done with the ligament cut in between big toe and second toe, but I know my second toe was sore up to sometimes too. So I can't imagine what it would be like for a little toe that had done major surgery on. Hopefully someone who went through the same thing you are going through now can give you some reassurances.
Take good care! I am sure you look back now and thought how worried you were about your big toe and now it's doing much better than ever. So hang in there!
You were right that was the surgery i had on my 2nd toe. I have seen someone else who had the arthoplasty[dont know if that is how you spell it] and they had the opposite to me and they had a floppy toe which when they lifted their foot up the toe that had been fixed dropped to the floor so in that case you wonder what the best option would be. and which to go for.
I have been walking so much better now. When i went to see the doctor he thought i might have a bit of arthritus in the right ankle hence the dragging of the foot so i sometimes take tablets and this helps enormousley. EEK i thought only old people get arthritus guess i must be getting there myself.