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    Old 02-02-2004, 07:46 AM   #1
    HappyMama
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    4 week bunion post op update

    I wanted to write an update on my 4 week post op appt (double bunionectomy).

    The doc said my feet look good. I asked him about my right big toe curving towards the other toes, and he said that does happen because the muscles and tissue have a "memory" of how it used to be and will do that to an extent. He said it doesn't look like the bunion is reforming though and the degree that it has shifted back is normal, so that's good. He says he purposely overcorrects it b/c of the tendency to drift back some. No xrays were taken..more will be taken in 2 more weeks. He did say that my swelling is still less than average, which he said is probably due to me keeping my feet elevated so much.

    He gave me some toe exercises to do for 30 minutes / day and they HURT!!! It's quite important to do them though so they don't remain so stiff. But ouchie!! He also told me to lightly massage my incision area with some aloe or cream to loosen it up .

    I can now wear tennis shoes if I can fit into any, lol. I haven't tried that yet. I may need to buy a larger pair.

    So, all is well. I just wish that I was back to normal, but all in time.

     
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    Old 02-02-2004, 08:06 AM   #2
    twobadfeet
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by HappyMama
    I wanted to write an update on my 4 week post op appt (double bunionectomy).

    The doc said my feet look good. I asked him about my right big toe curving towards the other toes, and he said that does happen because the muscles and tissue have a "memory" of how it used to be and will do that to an extent. He said it doesn't look like the bunion is reforming though and the degree that it has shifted back is normal, so that's good. He says he purposely overcorrects it b/c of the tendency to drift back some. No xrays were taken..more will be taken in 2 more weeks. He did say that my swelling is still less than average, which he said is probably due to me keeping my feet elevated so much.

    He gave me some toe exercises to do for 30 minutes / day and they HURT!!! It's quite important to do them though so they don't remain so stiff. But ouchie!! He also told me to lightly massage my incision area with some aloe or cream to loosen it up .

    I can now wear tennis shoes if I can fit into any, lol. I haven't tried that yet. I may need to buy a larger pair.

    So, all is well. I just wish that I was back to normal, but all in time.
    I'm glad to hear your news was good. Getting an occasional medical stamp of approval makes all the difference, doesn't it, in how we feel about our recovery? Does for me too. I do have a question though. What toe exercises did he give you? I'm doing toe exercises, too, but I can't imagine any that could last for 30 minutes a day. Maybe I'm way underworking my toe? But frankly, if I exercised that poor toe for 30 minutes a day, I doubt I could walk the next day. Please tell--I'm very interested to know what he wants you to do.

    twobadfeet

     
    Old 02-02-2004, 09:16 AM   #3
    HappyMama
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    I just move my big toes up and down (holding by the base of the toe). He told me to do it so it hurts some but not a lot. I just did some and I really didn't push it that much to start off with. I'm probably going to break it down into a few 15 minute sessions each day. After exercising, I painted my toes as a reward.

     
    Old 02-02-2004, 10:08 AM   #4
    twobadfeet
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by HappyMama
    I just move my big toes up and down (holding by the base of the toe). He told me to do it so it hurts some but not a lot. I just did some and I really didn't push it that much to start off with. I'm probably going to break it down into a few 15 minute sessions each day. After exercising, I painted my toes as a reward.
    Thanks! Good to know. My doctor has me pushing down gently on the toe bone just above the joint. As I've gained more flexibility and for some variety, I've added a couple that seem to be working (and certainly haven't done any harm). I flex my toe down (no hands) for a count of 50 at least once or twice a day; that seems to be strengthening my toe muscles that got a little lazy after the surgery. To get some bend back in the toe itself, I rest my foot on a smooth flat surface and curl my big toe under a little against the floor. (Again for a count of 50.) That one took a while to be able to do at all, but it seems to be helping to limber the toe up. I'm not recommending, mind you--since I'm not a doctor, but these are working for me. I just wish this process was a bit faster. This is work. I wish I could say that painting my toes felt like a reward for me, but the truth is what I really want is chocolate. The least I'll settle for is a good cup of tea


    twobadfeet

     
    Old 02-02-2004, 12:54 PM   #5
    rileyroe
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by HappyMama
    I wanted to write an update on my 4 week post op appt (double bunionectomy).

    The doc said my feet look good. I asked him about my right big toe curving towards the other toes, and he said that does happen because the muscles and tissue have a "memory" of how it used to be and will do that to an extent. He said it doesn't look like the bunion is reforming though and the degree that it has shifted back is normal, so that's good. He says he purposely overcorrects it b/c of the tendency to drift back some. No xrays were taken..more will be taken in 2 more weeks. He did say that my swelling is still less than average, which he said is probably due to me keeping my feet elevated so much.

    He gave me some toe exercises to do for 30 minutes / day and they HURT!!! It's quite important to do them though so they don't remain so stiff. But ouchie!! He also told me to lightly massage my incision area with some aloe or cream to loosen it up .

    I can now wear tennis shoes if I can fit into any, lol. I haven't tried that yet. I may need to buy a larger pair.

    So, all is well. I just wish that I was back to normal, but all in time.
    I am glad you had a good appointment! It seems like when you have a good appointment that you feel like you are actually getting better. I did have to get a different pair of tennis shoes a little bigger, but it feels so nice to wear regular shoes!! My doctor told me that my swelling was less than average too......today is a different story!! I went back to work today, and on top of going back, I started a new job! I am very lucky because it is a desk job, and my boss knows I just had surgery on both feet, so he had a footstool ready for me to use! I did use it alot, but my feet definately knew they were down and moving alot more than normal!! They are sore now!!! Thank god i only work part-time!!! Not to mention we have about 9 inches of snow on the ground that I have to try and walk through....it is much easier walking on a flat surface!! Who would have ever thought it would hurt to walk through the snow!! Again....I'm glad your appointment went so well......keep taking it easy!!!!!!!!!!!! Mandy

     
    Old 02-02-2004, 01:36 PM   #6
    carolcrone
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    Glad you had a good report from the doc. I'm also glad to hear that the big toe bending back toward the other toes is normal, since mine is now doing that too. I finally gave up on my existing shoes & went out & bought some bigger ones. I mean WAY bigger - size 8 EEEE men's!. They fit good right now, & hopefully I can decrease the size as time goes on. Yes, snow is awful to walk on. So is ice. By the way, I'd go for the chocolate instead of the tea or the painted nails!

     
    Old 02-02-2004, 03:54 PM   #7
    sweetficus
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    My 4 week post op f/u appt today too!
    And I am finally wearing real shoes! (I loathe that surgical boot - the ugly awkward symbol of my dysmobility)

    My foot looks fine (I "fixed" it myself, ha), but there is definitely still some potential mobility there, a difference from 80% to 95% corrected.
    I am wearing a toe spacer, and also I wear a bunion splint (Bort "regulator" ordered online a few days ago - surprisingly comfortable) at night.
    My doctor recommended wearing a splint at night to keep that big toe in alignment and prevent drift.

    My toe very slightly curves in - my doctor said that all women have to have that, b/c otherwise they would never be able to fit into a woman's shoe after, otherwise it would be overcorrected and sticking out the other way.

    It was nirvana to finally wash and scrub my dry flaky foot thoroughly (I had my pin taken out last week and was told to not touch the bandage for another week so it wouldn't get infected).
    My scar is a little puffy but I was told to rub Vit E oil on it. I ordered Mederma online (based on someone's recommendation on this board) so waiting for that to arrive.

    I went out and immediately bought a duplicate pair of same Dansko clogs I already own one size bigger, so I can wear the bigger size on my surgerized foot.
    Yes it's expensive but after a month of recuperating, there is no amount of money worth risking any problems wearing a too tight shoe!
    BTW, Dansko is practically the only brand of shoe I have been wearing for years, it's wide forefoot really accomodates bunions, I really recommend it.

    After almost screwing up my surgery by being over active and doing toe exercises at week 3, I am being very conservative about over use on my foot now.
    I'm thinking that some yoga would be okay (not ashtanga style like I used to do) and possibly rowing machine at the gym? I am feeling a little bit deprived of exercise (among other things). What did everyone else do to keep in shape?

    Funny how some of us are on the same post op schedule! It is definitely the right time of the year for a prolonged recovery

     
    Old 02-03-2004, 07:03 AM   #8
    PMCW58
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    I'm right there with you on that 4 week post-op schedule! I am exactly 4 weeks post-op today on my right foot bunionectomy. God bless those of you who had the bilateral--I know it's tough.

    I felt so much better this past week than the week before. I am able to stand for much longer before my foot is "screaming". I'm driving, too, although I try to stay off the interstate and really busy streets. I am doing "two footed driving", as the doctor told me not to brake with my right foot.

    I am wearing the toe spacer with a sock over it and the infamous "blue shoe" . I know last time I wore the blue shoe until week 7. Yesterday, at Sam's, I tried on some Birkenstock clogs and I couldn't even get my right foot in one. It is still swollen definitely. I know with my left foot surgery last May, I ended up wearing an extra wide tennis shoe as my first pair of shoes and even that was uncomfortable.

    As a bit of advice to those of you who have not had the foot surgery before...if your healing is very very slow, as I felt mine was last year..ask your doctor about physical therapy. Mine never suggested it to me, but I have a friend who is a PT and she told me to come in and she worked on my foot and it was wonderful. When I was 4 months post-op, my foot was still stiff and swollen and the PT helped that so much. Some orthopaedics don't believe in PT for some reason (or for very few cases). Just something to keep in mine if you're still feeling stiffness after a reasonable amount of time.

    Take care!
    PMCW (Paula)
    right foot bunionectomy 1/6/04
    left foot 5/03

     
    Old 02-03-2004, 08:13 AM   #9
    HappyMama
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    Thanks Paula for your update. I am interested in knowing what type of physical therapy is involved. Basically, all I've been told to do is to move my big toe back and forth by the base of the toe for about 30 minutes a day. Is there more to it than that? Thanks!

    I have found that in the last few days I am able to stay on my feet for much longer too and it feels great to be more productive!

     
    Old 02-03-2004, 09:28 AM   #10
    Crazy43
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    I am so glad you are doing well. I hope I am doing as well as the rest of you in 2 more weeks. I think I am the end of the line for the group for recovery as of now, however I am sure there will be more like us to follow. Thanks for the update. Good luck on finding shoes.

     
    Old 02-04-2004, 06:15 AM   #11
    PMCW58
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by HappyMama
    Thanks Paula for your update. I am interested in knowing what type of physical therapy is involved. Basically, all I've been told to do is to move my big toe back and forth by the base of the toe for about 30 minutes a day. Is there more to it than that? Thanks!

    I have found that in the last few days I am able to stay on my feet for much longer too and it feels great to be more productive!
    Happy Mama--I'll tell you about my situation last year..I had my left foot done; the Dr. discharged me at 7 weeks post-op. At that point, my foot was still swollen and very stiff and I just presumed that would disappear within a few weeks or a month...Fast forward to four months post-op and I still wasn't walking on that foot correctly because my big toe joint was SO STIFF and swollen..So I went to a friend who was a physical therapist and she used this ultrasound machine on my foot and then she would "manipulate" it and then worked with me to show me how to practice walking on my foot correctly, which I wasn't doing. I wasn't putting any weight on the ball of my foot because it still hurt. Anyway, after about 1.5-2 months of seeing her, it felt suddenly normal, finally.

    I don't think you need to run to physical therapy (although if your Dr. orders it, do it) but just know that that option is there if your recovery seems slow. I found that it was 5.5 months before my foot felt totally "normal", which I defined as being able to RUN down the stairs barefooted without shoes!

    I am just a wee bit miffed at my Dr. for discharging me last time when I didn't feel my foot was 100%. I guess that's the state of medicine these days--oh well.

    Good luck!!
    PMCW (Paula)

     
    Old 02-04-2004, 12:46 PM   #12
    carolcrone
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    Re: 4 week bunion post op update

    I was pretty surprised that my doctor didn't call the 6 week visit the last as I'm now in shoes with no crutches, but I'm to return at 10 weeks. After reading the last post, I'm glad he's being a little more thorough. Maybe we should start demanding more complete medical care...

     
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