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Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op


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Old 05-18-2018, 03:03 PM   #1
wadelle2
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Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

I will be having flat foot surgery the last week of June. I can't rattle off all the surgery details but it will involve Cotton's procedure, Achilles tendon lengthening, two bone grafts, maybe heel repositioning. I am a full-time community college instructor, so luckily I'll have 6 weeks of summer break before I need to return to work. I'll have plenty of down time and help those 6 weeks at home. My concern is returning to work. With the timeline I'm looking at, I'd have 6 weeks home then spend weeks 6-8 post-op back at work full-time but will be in meetings and trainings those first two weeks back (so mostly sitting). The semester starts when I will be 8 weeks post-op, and I will then need to return to the classroom full-time. I teach in a computer lab environment with standing instructor stations, so I do need to be up. I will have a tall chair I can sit on sometimes during lectures, but a good part of my day is standing and moving. I need to get around the room to assist students, but I will have a fantastic teaching assistant to help me while I heal. I will be on a knee scooter.

I worry about swelling, pressure on my "good" right foot (which is also flat, but not as bad as my left) which is going to have to do all the work while I stand/knee board, mobility (how in the world do I get around/carry stuff, etc.,) and general exhaustion.

Does my timeline sound do-able? Any tips/advice to manage a work day while healing welcome!

 
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Old 05-18-2018, 03:48 PM   #2
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

Well you are younger than I am so that is in your favor. I'm 73 and had similar surgery January 10, 2018. At 6 weeks that bones have not yet finished fusing. I went to a walking boot at 6 weeks, but that is only partly weight bearing and swelling was still a big issue. I am still in physical therapy at 4 months out. A knee scooter should be helpful, but there are a lot of variables in how quickly you progress. It does sound a bit too optimistic to me, though.

 
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Old 05-19-2018, 10:53 AM   #3
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

If you get all those procedures, it is usually a long recovery. I wa supposed to get the heel repositioning and and would have been non weight bearing for 12 weeks! Fortunately once dr went in that wasn't needed, but it was still 8 weeks non wb in a boot til 12wks,. Standing was hard I could only stand for a lil bit at a time. I couldn't even imagine going back to work full time. I'm sure it can be done, at 6 wks there is still lots of swelling. Scooters do help tremendously, but alone it's hard cuz putting in and out of car. I hope it works out for you

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Old 05-19-2018, 03:22 PM   #4
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

Thank you. The whole getting mobility equip in and out of the car is one of my concerns. It's my left foot, so I should be able to drive fine. But how to get from the driver's seat to the back where my knee scooter will be seems like a huge obstacle! The procedure and recovery don't have me overly stressed but the work part does. Returning to work at 6 weeks and back to FT teaching at 8 is a MUST, so I'm trying to brace myself for how to manage it, and it's freaking me out a good deal. My semesters are crazy enough with 55+-hour work weeks when I have two good feet and am at optimal condition. I have no idea how to do it all on one good foot. But people get through worse obstacles! Just trying to prepare myself as best I can.

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Originally Posted by Thislilpigg33 View Post
I agree with georgiachicken. If you get all those procedures, it is usually a long recovery. I wa supposed to get the heel repositioning and and would have been non weight bearing for 12 weeks! Fortunately once dr went in that wasn't needed, but it was still 8 weeks non wb in a boot til 12wks,. Standing was hard I could only stand for a lil bit at a time. I couldn't even imagine going back to work full time. I'm sure it can be done, at 6 wks there is still lots of swelling. Scooters do help tremendously, but alone it's hard cuz putting in and out of car. I hope it works out for you

 
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Old 05-27-2018, 01:58 PM   #5
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

I really hope it works out for you. What does your dr say as far as how long you will be in cast, nonwb, also if your leg is not going to be elevated throughout the day expect it to be huge and painful at end of day. And consider you can't take narcotics til you get home since you shouldn't drive with narcotics :/

 
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Old 05-27-2018, 08:36 PM   #6
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

The major thing that surprised me about the Foot and Ankle surgery was how exhausting it was. Recovering from all this drama is the real stress on your body and robe an awful lot of energy from you. So you will have to take into account the fact that in addition to the pain swelling and inability to use the surgical leg , you just won't have the energy to do everything after the surgery you take for granted now. If there is any way at all that you could get your employer to make allowances it would be best for you to try and take care of that as soon as possible.

 
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Old 06-05-2018, 02:25 PM   #7
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

I just went through very similar surgery Feb 9. First thing I will tell you is it sucks but then it passes. If you have ANY questions feel free to contact me.

I was 6 week NWB. At 8 weeks I was 2 weeks into wearing a boot and barely walking without crutches.

You need to ask the doc exactly what kind of cast you will be wearing and when you are expected to get in a boot. Get as much info as you can before surgery.

I'm at 16 weeks now and still have swelling issues. My most comfortable times are sitting with my foot up and walking. Standing still and sitting foot on floor are not comfortable.

Use the knee scooter and keep it close for days that walking around just kicks your butt. It is a very exhausting process.

 
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Old 06-20-2018, 07:24 PM   #8
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

If you have no choice than you have to be smart and careful. You will feel exhausted. You need the scooter. You might be beginning weight bearing so you may be okay getting out of the car however your foot down for the car ride will lead to swelling. Get a low chair and put your foot up. Bring ice packs. Rely on your TA.

 
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Old 06-21-2018, 07:29 AM   #9
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

I am in my 11th week post a very similar surgery. Bone graft, heel repositioning, tendon lenghthening. Everyone heals differently and I am on the slow side of that scale. I am still quite swollen around my ankle, still wearing a boot, still not putting full pressure while crutching around. The nerves leading up to my toes are slow to returning and when my foot is down for more than a half hour, it becomes very mottled. I hope that your recovery is speedy, but definitely prepare for a slow ride. 👍🏼👣

 
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Old 07-06-2018, 10:11 AM   #10
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

I fear exhaustion. I have an overloaded schedule this fall, so I actually have extra classes in the mix. I'm hoping one or more does not make. I will get an assistant to help me in all my classes which will be great. I teach in a computer lab, so am on my feet all day and move up and down rows of computers to assist students. My assistant will be a huge help with trying to get to everyone.

 
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Old 07-09-2018, 10:23 PM   #11
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

Iím about to have flat foot corrective surgery on my left foot/ankle/leg as well.
I donít have advice to give surgery wise, but I am concerned about my right foot just like you are.

Youíll be taking on a lot more weight and strain with your right leg/ankle/foot, do you have supportive shoes?
If not, try looking for some good quality orthotic shoes. If you are given the go ahead by your doc to stand as long as you need to for work, you definitely need shoes that will help you out. Aetrex shoes helped me so much before I tore my PTT. Theyíre incredibly comfortable! They have lots of styles to choose from as well. Regardless if you prefer an open toed shoe or closed toed shoe, they would definitely help alleviate some stress from your right leg/ankle/foot.
Also, do you have custom orthotics?
If not, maybe your doc could recommend a good brand/model of premade insoles for your shoes.

You mentioned that you were concerned about the ease of carrying things while being NWB and having to work. What about a lightweight backpack? Something you could keep on you during classes, to also carry a water bottle or thermos and any supplies you need.

Another thing to add.. maybe you should consider bringing an ice pack to work, and elevate and ice your leg/ankle/foot when youíre on your lunch break/any break. Iíd try to keep my leg up for as long as possible. What about finding something to prop your leg onto while youíre able to sit on a stool when teaching?

Like another poster above, I definitely am concerned about the swelling you will be dealing with at the end of the day.

 
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Old 07-12-2018, 02:49 PM   #12
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Re: Flat Foot Surgery and returning to work 6-8 weeks post-op

Hi Wadelle. Been wondering how your surgery went and how your good foot has been holding up now that it is your only useable foot? At almost 4 weeks post surgery, I have noticed a big difference in how easily fatigued my good foot becomes, especially when I use my crutches. Did you end up getting some supportive shoes and orthotic inserts? If so, is it helping?

 
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