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    Old 11-05-2009, 10:57 AM   #1
    Linda1031
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    Lightbulb Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Can anyone tell me the steps of recovery after a Sub Talar Joint Fusion Surgery. I had this surgery done on Oct. 1st this year, and am to have the cast removed next week (yippppeee), I have been non-weight-berring since the surgery--ugh. I was told that I would be put into a boot cast next, so I am curious what I should expect, will I be able to "walk" with the boot cast or will I still have to be on the horrible crutches? And when do they normally start you on physical therapy? And what should I expect from physical therapy (meaning what types of foot movement do they do?). This has been a very painful and frustrating time for me as I am usually very busy with the holidays prep this time of year, and will I be pretty much ok by Christmas? I always have the whole family over to my house on Christmas Eve (lots of us) and do so much to prep for this. If anyone can please tell me what I should be expecting will be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Linda

     
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    Old 11-05-2009, 05:01 PM   #2
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hello Linda,

    I have had a subtalar fusion (Dec 2008). I can probably help with some of your questions, but please keep a couple of things in mind - things can differ from doctor to doctor and I have also had an ankle fusion along with some other foot surgeries. My doc is typically very conservative, but your doctor may follow a different post op regimen than mine does. My ankle fusion and stiff big toe complicate things, and my subtalar fusion was my ninth surgery - so my foot tends to heal a little slower in general.

    I had my surgery 12/1/08 and I was putting weight on it sometime in January. I used one crutch for a while. I know I couldn't drive until late January, so I had to have someone drive me to and from work. It really stunk!

    I never had physical therapy for my st fusion. There was no range of motion for me to protect in my ankle, since it was also fused. Now some doctors use pt as a means to strengthen surrounding muscles and to get used to walking correctly with a fusion, so your doctor may send you.

    If you have any other questions - please let me know.

    I think you'll be ok preparing for your family to be at your house. However, I would suggest doing as much as you can while sitting in a chair. Remember to continue to elevate your foot - especially at night while you sleep. Let pain be your guide and stop if your foot starts to hurt. Finally, don't be afraid to ask for help. You don't have to do everything yourself. Wear your boot (cam walker) just like you are supposed to. It will make getting around a lot easier.

    Keep us posted!

    Step

     
    Old 11-06-2009, 05:36 AM   #3
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Thank you so much Step for your input, it does help alot to know ahead of time what to "actually" expect. I do feel very confident with my doctor, as he is my 5th one, it's very hard to find one that will actually listen to you and not diagnose you from a text book form of symtoms. He did tell me that when all is ready with my ankle, then it will be on to physical therapy, so that is alittle scary as I am really, really tired of pain. I had been dealing with this for almost a year before the surgery and no one could see what was really going on with the foot until I found this doc, there was an extra bone embeded behind the achilles tendon as well and it had to be removed too, so that incision is alittle bigger. My family has been great and have all offered to help me with the whole Christmas gathering prep, so I am going to try really hard to let them do most of it. Your input does help me to see things ahead of me. And I too am not able to drive as it is my right foot and in our state it is illegal to drive with that foot being impaired. Drives me nuts as I am a "goer" and not a sitter. Again, thank you for your input.

     
    Old 11-12-2009, 08:26 PM   #4
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Linda! I just had a ST Fusion on my left ankle on 7 Oct 09. so I am a week behind you in recovery. I would love to swap stories.. Did you get your cast off this week? Can you walk on it?? How does it feel??? I am supposed to get mine off next Friday.

     
    Old 11-13-2009, 06:21 AM   #5
    Linda1031
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Tara,
    I won't say it's so nice to hear from someone who has had the same thing done, because it's not something I would wish on anyone. But I do feel your pain. Along with my sub-talar fusion I had to have an extra bone that I was born with removed, so there was also an incision behind the heel between both ankles. I did have my cast removed this week, and am now into a walking boot cast that can removed when needed. But that too is very heavy to wear. I am still non weight bearing because the foot can't be put flat yet. It is very stiff and very swollen. I was very surprised at how dry the foot and leg were and are, so much dry skin and because it is so dry, it is hard for a moisturizer to soak in. The cast came off on Tuesday, so I waited a good 24+ hrs before I decided to soak the foot in luke warm water to try and get moisture back in the it, this morning it appeared to help. I do some stretching similar to that of plantar faciitis exercises, just sitting down. Stretching the achilles tendon, it is painful, but I would rather do that myself then a physical therapist that wants to push further. My doctor won't talk physical therapy for another 2 weeks because he wants to see what the range of motion by then and if the foot is able to sustain it. I don't about you, but I had been dealing with the foot problem for nearly a year, not being full weight bearing on it and went through 4 other doctors before I found the one I have now. All the others were not seeing the major problem and constantly doing trial and errors causing it to worsen. So because my left foot had to be my dominant one this whole time, I asked that it too have an xray done when they did the right foot this week to make sure there wasn't a problem starting to form in it, it appears that there is a smaller extra bone in it too and the doctor said it may or may not pose a problem. I am praying it won't, because I don't know about you, but it was by far the most painful thing I have ever gone through, especially the first 2 weeks of post op just trying to stand up on the crutches the blood that would rush down to the foot was more then I could handle. I was also on blood thinner injections everyday for the 1st 2 weeks to prevent the possibility of a blood clot because of having to be confined to bed. But things are alittle better now, I just am very anxious to walk on it again. My doctor said it will be about 6-8 months before it is at 80%, because as we both know, it can't be a 100% again due to the inability to flex side to side. But if I can walk again without pain, I will be very happy then. So how did everything go for you, ie; your surgery, going home, your first 2 weeks, and everything else. If there is anything I can assist you with as far as day to day things happening, let me know and I will be more then happy to share any advice. Look forward to hearing from you.

    Linda

     
    Old 11-14-2009, 06:02 AM   #6
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Linda!
    Well my story is this kinda long but I will try to shorten it. I am in the AF and 2 1/2 years ago I stepped off a step wrong and twisted my foot badly. Went to ER and they said it was broken, f/u with my Military doc and they said it wasn't. So no cast no nothing. Put me on a few weeks of sprained ankle therapy and I went back to regular duties. Started running 4 miles a day like usual. Hurt like crazy and swelled everytime I ran. At first I thought it was just tender. But then we moved to a new base and my husband was like, why don't you get that checked again. So I went to the Mil docs again and these ones sent me right to an ortho guy. He did an MRI and immediately found 2 stress fractures and bruising on my bottom bone(can't remember the name) Basicaly at this point there was no repairing just pain management. So we tried PT and coritzone shots for almost a year. Worked by only for a while. Eventually the cortizone all lasted a day instead of 8 weeks. So then he sent me to a podiatrist and in Jan 09 he did an implant into my ST joint to keep the joint from moving. Didn't work, in fact, made it worse. So in Jun he took it out, and we were hoping that miraculously it would be fixed. Nope. So we decided to do the fusion. It was a HUGE decision for me as I am messing with my military career, but he assured me that once I heal he would reccomend that I could still run up to 100 yards in an emergency situation, which is the magic phrase to keep me in. I will never run again like I used to, and that's hard for me to comprehend. But my days were filled with pain and swelling just from everyday living so I had to do this.

    The first 2 weeks for me were awful. I couldn't be up for longer that a few minutes without my feeling like it was going to explode. I would break out into a sweat and just awful anxiety. But now I move around pretty good.
    The first night home from the hospital I ended up calling the doc because I was in tears. Come to find out I wasn't taking the medication right. LOL I was also sent home with an Iceman, a wrap that has tubes attached and goes to a cooler filled with ice/water, then it pumps the ice cold water to the wrap. It was definately a Godsend. And now I have it for future use, like when the take the cast off and when I start walking on it again. I'm sure I will need it.

    So here I am, just over 5 weeks post op. The constant deep pain I had before seems to be gone, I don't feel it all. And before I could feel it even sitting so I am optimistic that this is working. The pain from surgery is still significant. I have an incision on the side and one on the heel. The heel is the most painful and the itchies are really getting to me at this point. I have some nerve damage from the first surgery on two of my toes and the top of my foot. The fusion has really aggravated that too. I go back next Friday and praying that the are taking the cast off. I leave 2 days later for a cruise, so that should be interesting. I invested in a kneewalker this time, found a place that rented it for $50 month. It has really helped alot. I've been on crutches and in a cast so much this year that I just couldn't do crutches again. I will take the knee walker on the cruise with me as well as my crutches as from what you say I guess I will need them. I am so glad to be talking to someone that is going through this the same time as I am. It helps to have someone who truly understands!!

     
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    Old 11-15-2009, 11:40 AM   #7
    Linda1031
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Wow Tara, we seem to have gone through very similar problems, from doctor to doctor and misdiagnosis after misdiagnosis, even having trial and errors making things worse. Those first 2 weeks me post op were by far the worst pain I had EVER felt in my whole life too, I too thought the whole foot was going to explode from all of the blood filling it up, and all I could do was cry. I know the meds they gave me was morphine, but even that didn't seem to help a whole lot. When I had my surgery, they also did a "block anesthesia on my whole leg, that takes almost 24 hrs to wear off, but it actually took 4 days for the feeling to come back in my knee, my husband had to bend it for me so I could use the crutches to get up and go to the bathroom. Now that I am "hard cast" free, I have noticed that I no longer have any muscle in my calf, it is totally gone. So resting the leg elevated can be pretty uncomfortable because it's now the bone resting on the pillow and after awhile that gets pretty sore. I am in Cam Boot which is also pretty heavy and still having to use the crutches. I still have alot of swelling too, and the doctor said that will take a few months to subside, great, still no shoe. Not sure how long it will be before I can wear a full shoe due to the incision he had to make behind my heel by the achilles tendon site to remove the extra bone I had. That incision is very sore and very tender. The portals he made for the scopes are as well tender and like you said, the whole made to insert the screw on the bottom of the heel is like rock hard on the surface but very sore to try and put any weight on it. I am still unable to put any weight on the foot, and am due to go back for a 2 week post cast off visit to see what range of motion there is in order to set up for physical therapy. So I am really praying that maybe this week I will be able to try and stand on it, not looking right this moment though. I do some stretching exercises with it right now while sitting, flexing it backwards as far as I can tolerate, to try and stretch out the tendons along the sides of the foot, it's alittle painful, but I know it has to be done so they don't stay so tight. I didnt' try that until I was cast free for atleast 3 days though. I have to admit I am pretty scared about the physical therapy, not knowing what kind of things they are going to want to do and what kind of pain I will be in afterwards or what kind of swelling may occur. I know going through almost a year of problems with the foot has just driven me nuts, the pain, the constant swelling, you know what I mean, you've gone through it too. It's just so frustrating emotionally and physically. Good for you in being able to get the knee walker, I wanted one too, but the cheapest we found here to rent one was $150 a month, and to me that was just way to much to spend knowing that the medical bills were coming in on a daily basis and I had to give up my job earlier this year because of my physcial limitations. So my husband has been the main paycheck provider. So losing that extra $70k a year has made a huge difference for us. Gone from a very comfortable lifestyle to watching what we spend now, and I am so not used to that. Anyway, just so you know, the road to recovery will be difficult and still alittle painful and don't expect to be able to walk around for awhile. I so do hope that you will be able to enjoy your cruise, keep in mind the corridores on the ship are very narrow and the rooms are VERY small. You may need alot of help boarding on and off as with all of the cruises I have taken the plank on and off was sloped, so going up was an incline and down well you know what I mean. I would use the knee walker as much as possible on it because the ships are huge. TAKE LOTS OF HAND SANITIZER'S too, the germs are pretty serious, and being incompacitated for as long as you have, it wears down you defenses and you can become ill faster then normally. So I hope some of this helps to know what your next phase will be like. As you said, it really helps to talk to someone who can REALLY relate with this whole nightmare and pretty much at the same time. I really hope your trip is wonderful, just be sure to rest the leg every chance you can, because the swelling can instensify with the more you do, even on the knee walker because the foot will be in a downward position the whole time you use it. And take plenty of pain meds with you, being on the ship means being totally surrounded by water and that means humidity and lots of it, so that alone will have a major effect on the swelling and the joints. Please keep me posted on your doctor visits and progress and I will do the same. Take care.

    Linda

     
    Old 11-19-2009, 01:20 PM   #8
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Linda!! Just checking to see how your week is going.. I go to the doctor tomorrow. I am SO anxious to get this cast off. The itching is getting really bad. And now a piece of the surgical tape has come loose and is "floating" around in my cast. Is driving me insane!!!
    How is the swelling doing for you? Is it getting any better??

     
    Old 11-20-2009, 05:32 AM   #9
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Tara,
    I am so happy for you today, becoming cast free. I know the itching was driving me crazy too, but that was mostly because as women, we are used to shaving our legs and that was exactly what we couldn't do. So that explained why my leg itched. And the amount of dry skin on my leg and foot was amazing, there was so much of it and it would just flake off for several days, it was to soar to try and scrub it to exfoliate it. Lotion would basically just sit on top of the skin because it was so dry it couldn't absorb. So be prepared for that. As for my status this week, I still can't put pressure down on the foot, I have a heel lift in the cam boot because the foot still can't go to a 90 degree angle. That is by far so frustrating for me. The swelling is still there as well, it doesn't seem to help by putting ice on it either. I go back to the doctor on Tuesday the 24th and am going to ask him how long it takes for the bone to heal from the scraping they had to do. They had to scrape the bone down till it would bleed with this horrific looking tool that had sharp teeth on it. It was to severely traumatize the foot so it would be forced to heel the fusion site. I don't think I will be starting physical therapy quite yet since all I can do is basically move the foot up and down in a "yes" motion. No side to side motion as if making it say "no". Yesterday I did soak it in warm water with sea salt and that seemed to help with the stiffness of the foot and the toes, while it was in the water, of course it didn't do much with the swelling, but it still felt better then ice. I was told that the swelling may take quite some time to subside because the foot won't be used very much for awhile. Be prepared for alot of stiffness in the foot and especially along the sides of it as well as a loss of muscle (in the calf). I couldn't believe the difference in size between the 2 calfs now. I hope you are able to do well on your cruise, it will be exhausting, and be sure not to over do it and take an ice bag with you, you will no doubt need that. Let me know how everything goes with the cast off and how your cruise went. Take care and look forward to hearing from you soon.

    Linda

     
    Old 11-30-2009, 10:52 AM   #10
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Okay, so, I got my cast off on 20 Nov 09. It felt so good to breath!! It was quite dry as you mentioned but the swelling was not there at all. The doc put me in a boot and said I could start minimal weight bearing. The two days before the cruise I really tried not to do anything but use the knee walker and maybe stand to do dishes or whatever. I took the knee walker on the cruise. It was a God send. I did tend to overdue it a bit with the weight bearing and that's when I really saw the swelling. There is no pain except when I put weight on it to walk. But the pain is on the outside edges of my foot and my heel. I'm really hoping that it subsides as the healing process continues. The original pain that I had is not there. The foot is really stiff and my poor little calf is very tiny. All in all it seems to be doing okay.. My mother in law was like, it's really good that you had this vacation so you could start walking on your foot again. Stupid, I'm not supposed to be putting full weight on it.. She is really dumb. I don't think she truly understands the magnitude of what happened. Whatever...

    How is your healing going??

     
    Old 12-01-2009, 06:36 AM   #11
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Tara,
    I am so glad you had a wonderful cruise. I kind of knew you would over do it, it's like a huge sense of freedom once that cast comes off and you just REALLY want to take off like it is all healed. Where did you take a cruise to?? My healing process is alittle slower, I still have swelling and am now having to wear a compression sock to help minimize that, which does help. I still can't put equal distribution of weight on it,(62 day's post op) and am still wearing the cam-boot. I had to have a CT Scan this past Friday, and should get the results today. Doc wanted to make sure that the fusion process is happening. When he did the surgery, he also took picture images of the whole process for my husband & family to see so they would know exactly how severe and traumatic it had to be. So that helped them understand ALOT. The pictures are pretty shocking to see, especially the scraping down of the bones to the point that they would bleed, he had to severely traumatize the bones to force them into a healing process faster. I asked him last Friday how long it would take those bones to heal, and he said close to a year. Not what I really wanted hear, but not much I can do about it. Right now I can get around with one crutch for about alittle over half of the day carefully and slowly and the compression sock keeps the swelling down so that helps minimize the pain that swelling causes. I also take 2 Ibuprophin's first thing in the morning (because I know I will be moving around alot more) and again right before bed to also help with any inflamation and pain that occurs being more mobile. Once I get the results of the CT Scan, that will determine when I can start to do the physical therapy sessions. Not looking forward to that as I know it will be painful since I am unable to take a step at all without the crutches with bare feet. So when is your next Dr. visit? And have they discussed any physical therapy yet?. I know this is going to be a long process, but my patience is by far so thin right now, especially with the holidays being here and this being my most busiest time of year getting ready for them. My whole family comes to my house for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day my husband's family come's to our house. Atleast my family is very understanding on my limitations and everyone is pitching in to help me this year with the dinner and cookie making, as for my husband's family, it's pretty small, he only has a sister ( a total moron) and her husband and 2 kids + 1 grandchild that is a total spoiled, spoiled brat. My Mother-in-Law comes and stays with us for the 2 weeks of Christmas/New Year, and she is really wonderful, but she is also limited on what she can do as she is in her 70's and she has had 2 back surgery's, so I don't let her do to much at all. So some progress at a snails pace. Anyway, let me know how you keep progressing and if you will be needing physical therapy. Maybe we can coach each other on NOT OVER DOING IT, LOL. Talk to you soon, and especially Take Care.

    Linda

     
    Old 12-04-2009, 08:32 AM   #12
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Your family sounds alot like mine! LOL At least my husband's side. I only have my mom left on my side and I am flying her here for 2 weeks over the holidays. My dad passed this summer so I think it will good for both of us. The only bad part is she was never much of a homemaker even growing up so when she comes to visit there isn't much help. But she does spend time with the kids and loves them unconditionally. Which is more than I can say for my Mom in law. She acts more like a parent or day care provider than a grandmother. So my kids love it when my mom comes to visit.
    I am so sorry that your healing process seems to be taking so long. Just remember that everyone has their own time frame in which they heal. It hasn't always been this easy for me. This being my third sugery this year, I am glad that something seems to be going right. I still need to put up Christmas decorations and my hubby works odd shifts so I don't know when we will be doing it. Don't even get me started on work.
    My next doctor visit is 22 Dec. They haven't said anything about therapy yet, but I am sure it is coming. I am only supposed to be on minimum weight bearing but I have been using just a cane and my cam boot. Mine has an air pump which seems to be really helpful for a little extra comfort.
    Have you received your CT results yet? I would also consider getting some Dr. Soles gel insoles. I just bought some and put one in my cam boot and it is WONDERFUL.
    Well I know I am rambling and there isn't a clear thought process in here, but, please take it easy. I know it seems hard, but your foot will be better off the slower you take it. Oh, and take advantage of your family! They are there to help you!!

     
    Old 12-05-2009, 09:01 AM   #13
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Tara,
    I am so very sorry to hear about your Dad. I can only imagine how difficult the holidays can be when you lose a loved one. I know my brothers and I cherrish every year that my Dad & Mom are still with us. Got very good news from the Doctor regarding the CT Scan, he said it appears that the fusion of bones started to take almost right away, and that most of the problems I was having are a result of the excessive amount of swelling. But the compression sock is REALLY helping that alot, thank goodness. I will be starting my physical therapy next week, they scheduled me clear to the 31st of this month 3x a week, and in January we will schedule the rest since that's when the Insurance deductable starts over. Therapy will be for 8 weeks total. And thanks for the info regarding the Dr. Scholes gel inserts, I don't know why I didn't even think of that, I even have a medical backgound and it never crossed my mind, lol. I know most of my pain right now consists of the bottom of the heel where there is a hole from going in at that point with the screw and right along the outside edge of the foot to the top next to the arch. The bruising to the heel is starting to work it's way to the surface of the heel, so that is a little painful if I put to much weight on it. How old are your kids?? I just can't imagine how difficult it would be to care for little ones during this whole process, especially right after surgery. I am actually looking forward to being able to use my cane again, not that I liked it before, but I know it will be so much better the the crutches by far. The hardest part for me right now is not being able to drive and go Christmas shopping, way to many people in the stores for me to try and get around even in a scooter, and my patience has worn so thin right now that I don't think I would actually enjoy it, and people don't seem to be very sympathetic when your somewhat incompacitated slightly at this time of year either. But we do have our Christmas decorations up, inside and out thanks to my husband and daughter, we just have to still put up my formal tree in the formal living room, I always put up 2 trees, one in there and one in the family room. The formal tree is pretty large and I decorate that one as my elegant tree with the village next to it and a christmas train that runs around it, when my brothers and their family's come Christmas Eve they all like to take their family pictures in front of it, so hopefully we can get it all up and done.
    I am so relieved that everyone has offered to help me so much this year with my baking and the dinner, because that alone will be a huge help and cut way down on the time it takes me. My Mother-in-Law will be here in a couple more weeks, so I am excited about that, like I told you, the only down fall to that is my husband's sister and her family, I just really can't stand them at all and they seem to know exactly what buttons to push to get me furious. But DEEP BREATHS hopefully will get me through it. And now that I have learned to go up and down the stairs with one crutch, I can look forward to escaping from them when they come over everyday and run to my bedroom, shut and lock the door, lol. Anyway, I hope you continue to heal quickly with no problems and are able to enjoy the holidays happily and as stress free as possible. Please keep me posted on your recovery and let me know if they are going to have you do physical therapy, I will let you know what all is involved in that part too, although I am a llittle scared of that and what kind of pain will be involved. But I'll let you know. Take care and talk to you soon.

    Linda

     
    Old 12-14-2009, 05:42 AM   #14
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Linda! Just thougth I'd stop by to see how things are going.. I am very tempted to call my doctor this week. Something doesn't feel right. While putting minimum weight bearing on it I was having the same pain that you described, back of the heal and along the outside age. Well, now my foot doesn't stop throbbing and I have a lot of pain in my achilles area. It's excruiciating to walk on, so I don't. I went back to non weight bearing most of the time because ti really hurts. And the swelling doesn't seem to want to go down. Uggh, feeling a little discouraged since I thought I was doing so well. I'm guess I overdid it a little.... How is your healing coming? And the Holidays?? OH and byt the way my kids are 8 at 5 so it's a lot of work keeping up with them. And husband is on nights this month so I have no help right now really. Can't wait til my mom comes next week.... At least I will have some one to talk to other than the dogs and kids... Ha HA

     
    Old 12-15-2009, 05:25 AM   #15
    Linda1031
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    Re: Sub Talar Joint Fusion done--Need Answers

    Hi Tara,
    Yes the pain you are having right now is exactly what I was feeling and my doctor had me get a pair of "compression" socks, grant it I only need to wear one, but the other is good for when I wash one. It made the biggest difference as it really minimized the constant swelling I was having, I still have some swelling, but that is normal, he told me it was actually going to take a few months before the minimal swelling is gone. While wearing the compression sock I was able to stretch the achilles tendon with out all that pain that came trying without the sock on, it really has helped me so much and after wearing it for a good faithful week, I am able to get around with just one crutch now. Unless I over do it, by evening I usually need both, so I just need to learn not to over do it, like that is really possible with the holidays, lol. I was suppose to start my physical therapy last week, but had to cancel both appointments because we had so much snow and blizzard conditions, so today will actually be my first session. I'm just hoping they make me do things that are going to cause the foot to regress. I would strongly suggest you get the compression socks and try them for a week, and during that time try to baby it alittle more. And slowly try stretching the achilles tendon, the best way I found that worked fast (but with a stiff pain) was by sitting with both feet together and doing a slow slide with the foot back towards under the chair, it does hurt, but you can then feel just how stiff the tendon is too, and doing that every chance I could along with the compression sock made the biggest difference. The pain you have now is more then likely due to all of the swelling inside. One other thing I did at first to stretch the tendon was soak it in a good warm salted water tub, it allowed me to stretch more and believe it or not, it felt so good, I know they say to use ice for swelling, but the warm water did help me more then ice. The salt helped heal the incisions alot faster too, especially the one on the bottom of my heel, it was just so soar and the scab that formed was like a rock, so putting weight on it was like stepping on a pebble. To get the right compression sock, you need to measure around the largest part of your calf and the length of your leg from the foot to the knee. That tells you what size you need. Trust me, it helps enormously. And you don't need to wear it to bed either. Try it and let me know if it helped you as much as it helped me. My Mother-in-law will be arriving this Sunday so I am getting ready for her right now, and will have all my helpers coming everyday next week to help me with all my baking, I usually end up making around 70 dozen different cookies for Christmas, and we let everyone take home a cookie care package, it's been a tradition for so long, and it's our gift to everyone at the end of our Family get together Christmas Eve. There's usually about 37 of us that gather at my house Christmas Eve, and all of my brothers and their wives, girlfriends and my daughter and my Mom are really helping me so much this year, FINALLY they will see just how much work goes into throwing this get together every year for my husband and me. Anyway, keep me posted and if you talk to your doctor, ask about the compression sock. Talk to you soon and I will let you know how the physical therapy goes. Take Care. and If I don't hear from you before Christmas, I Wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Very Happy, Healthy New Year.

    Linda

     
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