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Finally Going in to See an Orthopedic Specialist


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Old 02-11-2009, 05:25 PM   #1
Itcheegirl
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Question Finally Going in to See an Orthopedic Specialist

Hello All -

Wanted to get some feedback regarding bunions - and this looks like the place. (There are plenty of bunion threads in this forum, so I guess I'm not alone! )

I'm thinking about caving in and finally making an appt. with an orthopedic surgeon to have my feet looked at. It seems like a good idea - the pain and discomfort have gotten to the point where it is affecting my life. Is that the proper time to have it seen to? I've been trying to put it off as long as possible, as I have heard that surgery is difficult and the recovery long and frustrating.

I have had bunions in both feet since a kid - my parents had me operated on when I was 15. Juvenile type surgery - all they did was shave off the bone, did nothing to correct the toe bone. So, now that I am 38, they have come back and then some. I have them in both feet, but surprisingly, the right foot hardly hurts at all - it's the left one that is in misery. It has pain daily, throbbing, aching pain no matter what kind of shoes I wear - even sneakers. I am wondering if the pain in the left big toe joint is from arthritis or a bone spur from having the prior surgery done in 1985.

I thought an orthopedic consultation might shed some light on why there is such bad pain in one foot and not the other. I guess my question is, is there anything else that doctors try, non-surgical type treatment like orthotics or cortisone injections, before recommending surgery? It will help me be prepared and informed. Thanks so much for any input!

 
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Old 02-11-2009, 06:05 PM   #2
slick31
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Re: Finally Going in to See an Orthopedic Specialist

Hey,
I had the bunion on my right foot done last year. As far as my experience was a Doctor will go straight for the surgery with this. I was told by my Doc. that nothing else would fix it. The pain from the bunion is gone but now I've other strange problems with my foot. Also (and I'm not trying to put you of) I've noticed theres not as much range of movement in the toe basically I can feel the Pin in there. Anyway for about 2-3 weeks after the surgery you pretty much won't be able to move. Just getting to the toilet and back is pretty difficult. You'll have to keep your leg elevated and if you don't you'll know all about it. The pain is hard to explain, its like extreme pressure in your foot and ankle which spreads up your leg if you don't elevate. Showering or having a bath is comical. You'll either have a cast or a boot (which is a hugh ridiculous looking sandel thing which I had and you can't take off at anytime for the 6 weeks). I was also kept in Hospital for 3 days I'm not sure if thats normal or not (I thought I was going in for a day surgery). The worst part is the boredom because you really can't move. Get plenty of crosswords, books, jigsaws etc. I also have a bunion on my left foot which is worse than the one I had done (looks much worse from the xrays) I would get it done but not until it is really really really necessary. This is just my experience (which from what I read up on before I had it done actually wasn't bad) everyone is different these are just some of the realities of having it done. Before this I would never have believed that a broken (fractured) toe could hurt that much!
Good luck with whatever you decide to do,
Slick.

 
Old 02-12-2009, 05:33 PM   #3
Itcheegirl
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Re: Finally Going in to See an Orthopedic Specialist

Thanks for your input!

I am hesitant to have surgery, as I have heard what an ordeal the recovery is, with having to be NWB, on crutches, in a cast or a boot - yikes! I have a friend who had to have ankle reconstruction surgery last year - she was in a cast and on crutches for about 6 weeks, and then in a boot for probably 6 more. She about went batshit crazy because of the inability to get around.

I haven't called an ortho dr. yet. I'm still thinking about it - I just don't know. I do know that my stupid ^%$# bunion is killing me, though...

Hope your foot is feeling o.k. Thanks again!

Last edited by Itcheegirl; 02-12-2009 at 05:36 PM. Reason: spelling correction

 
Old 02-13-2009, 08:43 PM   #4
tammyj204
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Re: Finally Going in to See an Orthopedic Specialist

If you are in pain, just get it done. Yes, the surgery leaves you in awful pain for a week (at the most). Yet, 6 weeks down the road, when you are pain free, you will wonder why you put up with years of pain!!! Totally worth it.

 
Old 02-15-2009, 01:38 PM   #5
wakkochic17
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Re: Finally Going in to See an Orthopedic Specialist

Itchee.. ankle reconstruction is a lot more complicated than foot surgery, you will only be off your feet for a few weeks (can't say how long on here because it will completely depend on your procedure and doc's recommendations). In some cases you will be partial weight-bearing right out of surgery, and in other cases such as having a removeable pin they may want you NWB for 3-4 weeks.
As for one foot differing from the other, bunions can get bad in one foot and never develop in the other so they are not always symetrical with their problems. It never hurts to at least get an opinion and get your questions answered. good luck!

 
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