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One year after PF surgery.

Posted by Jimbo on 12/06/00 at 12:07 (034311)

It has been almost a year since I had surgery to releive the pain from PF on my left foot. I had PF since the summer of 1997. I went to a orthopedist and two podiatrists. They tried everything on me. They injected my foot with cortizone, I took 500mg of Naprosyn, foot strapping, whirl pool, ultra sound, orthopedic support, etc. Nothing relieved the pain. I couldn't do my job anymore, because it required me to be on my feet constantly. In December of 1999, I decided to get the surgery; because of the pain. The doctor released the fascia, removed the heel spur, and removed a nueroma(pinched nerve). The rehab. process has been extremly long. The pain has been worse since the operation. I still have pain in my heel. I also developed new pain in my middle toes, on the sides of the foot; I also have burning pain in the front of my ankle with shooting pains going up my calf.

I've been to a pain clinic and another podiatrist. the Dr. at the pain clinic says I may have Reflex Sympathetic Dristophy. But the podiatrist disagrees. He has reviewed the surgeons operation report, looked at MRI's and x-rays; and has even spoken with the Dr. who operated on me. He's at a loss as to why I'm feeling more pain. Since the surgery left an ugly one inch scar on my left foot; he feels the internal scar tissue is just as big. This internal inflammation is what the podiatrist believes is what's causing this pain.

I've lost my job because of this. This surgery made everything worse. I strongly feel that I may bring a law suit against this doctor who operated on me. He told me that 80-90% of the pain would go away. The direct opposite happened.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Barbara TX on 12/06/00 at 12:34 (034314)

Jimbo - I don't know that you have an actionable case... you would have to prove that the doctor deviated from the standard of care in some way. Has your podiatrist expressed the opinion that the surgeon did something really wrong? This surgery takes a LONG time to recover from - and DON'T and I mean DON't despair! You still have another avenue to explore and that is ESWT - which has been effectively used to eliminate pf pain after surgeries from which there have been bad results. Stick with it and you can make it better!!! I am so sorry to hear about your job! I am a stay-at-home mom and I am close to losing my job around here. You have come to the right place for information and support! Thinking of you today, B.

P.S. If you are really concerned about the practicies of your doctor - you think that he is unprofessional and hasn't shown good faith, you might inquire with the your state board of medical examiners to see if there have been other complaints lodged against him. You can also visit http://www.footlaw.com .

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Jimbo on 12/06/00 at 19:03 (034350)

Thanks for the support Barbara. The new podiatrist, at first, felt that the doctor may not have released the fascia enough and that a follow up surgery may be necessary. When I told him that the Dr. removed the spur, he almost shook his head. The new Dr. said that it's the fascia that causes the pain not the spur. He also commented that I had too much scar tissue for a relatively simple surgery. But when he reviewed the MRI', x-rays, the operation report, and spoke with the Dr. who operated me; he changed his tune. After that he felt that the Dr. did a competent job. All doctor's try to protect and defend each other. And I think that after the Dr. spoke with my former podiatrist, he was cautious. All I know is that because of the surgery, I have twice the pain I had before, and I lost my job and benefits. I feel that I have a case against this Dr.

For now, I'm treating myself. I bought That German Ibuprophen gel and massage it in 3 times a day. I put ice on my foot when I need it. I'm doing non-impact exercises to strenghthen my muscles and to loose weight. The more weight I lose the better off my foot will be, because I'm a bit chubby.

How long does this have to take, Barbara? It's been a year since the surgery, and have made no significant improvement. That's a long time. Thank you for listing that website and thank you for your support.

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.Re Jimbo

Laurie R on 12/06/00 at 22:55 (034371)

Hi Jimbo,
First of all I would like to say that I am so sorry that your surgery did not help your foot . It really broke my heart to read your story today. I also lost my job due to PF but, I am on workmans comp and they are paying all my medical bills for my foot.

Now you are in even more pain then before your surgery??That is such a shame . Like I said I am very sorry this happened to you. Hang in there jimbo ,we are here for you... My very best to you, Laurie R

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Karen S on 12/07/00 at 00:09 (034373)

Oh my god. Everything you just described is exactly like my own situation. I had my surgery on June 29th of this year and am in my secondcast with it. After 3 months of physio after my first cast was off I was still in so much pain.

I've got alot of pain in places that I didn't have before surgery. I especially don't like the pain that goes around the bottom of my leg up into my calf. This is very painful and bothersome.

Thanks...Karen

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Julie F on 12/07/00 at 02:39 (034378)

Jimbo, Barbara mentioned ESWT - Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy. Do investigate this. Dr Zuckerman gave the url where you can inform yourself about it on another thread yesterday: it's

http://heelspurs.com/eswt/where.cgi?go=search

He has often said that ESWT is an appropriate treatment for people like yourself who have had surgery unsuccessfully. It is non-invasive, and according to all reports, without side effects. You can also call his office and speak to Katie, his ESWT co-ordinator. I hope you will look into this avenue of possible help before you consider another surgery.

All the best, Julie

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Jimbo on 12/07/00 at 09:38 (034400)

I'm sorry to hear of your situation, Karen. I really feel that these surgical procedures fail more than 50% of the time. These doctors don't want to admit it, though. They just want to line their pockets with money.

Hang in there,

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.Re Jimbo

Jimbo on 12/07/00 at 09:39 (034402)

Thnak you, Laurie.

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.

john h on 12/07/00 at 09:42 (034404)

did the surgeon totally release the entire fascia jimbo? if so why?

Re: One year after PF surgery.

john h on 12/07/00 at 09:45 (034405)

jimbo: if the doctor released the entire fascia or most of it did he suggest that you wear a supportive orthotic since you will have lost most of the fascia that supports your foot?

Re: One year after PF surgery.

john h on 12/07/00 at 09:47 (034406)

karen: do not lose faith so early. it can take up to a year to heal and it is rather common to have various new pains during the healing process.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Barbara TX on 12/07/00 at 15:31 (034424)

Jimbo - I've heard that it takes six months to a year - but if you have gotten WORSE, something needs to be done now. I wonder about your post-surgical treatment. Did you take a lot of time to rest, or did you start bearing weight immediately? Were you prescribed a hard cast, removable cast, or custom orthotic support? It is a common practice in the U.S. to remove the heel spur, so I don't think that that is a deviation from the standard of care. Happens all the time (but less than it used to). When you get a heel spur removed, you can injure the underlying bone and fracture it. On the bottom of the heel bone is lots of semi-soft bone that takes a really long time to heal, but it does. This would show up on a Bone Scan or MRI. This would cause SIGNIFICANT PAIN. Have you had these tests done post-surgery? I would get one done and arrange for a ESWT consultation or second opinion before any surgery. I know that you don't have insurance, but did you know that Dr. Zuckerman is running a ESWT lottery? He picks one name a month for a free course of treatment. It is a wonderful chance for someone who has the misfortune of not having insurance.

The most important thing I want you to remember is that this is not the rest of your life. Being down with anything for a year is frightening, frustrating, and just plain depressing. But you have lots of hope in ESWT. It could really jump-start your healing process. Consider it first.

Say - how are you making ends meet without your job??? All the best, B.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Karen S on 12/07/00 at 15:56 (034426)

Thanks Jimbo, you too. I agree with you on that one.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Karen S on 12/07/00 at 15:59 (034428)

Thanks John, I just thought it would have felt a bit better by now. I am trying to keep the faith, it just gets so depressing at times.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Jimbo on 12/07/00 at 17:20 (034433)

He didn't release the entire fascia. He said just enough to releave the tension. You can't cut away too much or else the foot muscles could collapse.

You wrote earlier to Karen that it takes one year to heal. It's been one year, already for me. I haven't felt a change. The pain changes. Somedays I can stand on my feet for up to one hour, but most of the time 15-20 minutes is all I can stand. Mostly I have bad days, with some good days now and then.

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Dr. Biehler on 12/08/00 at 19:46 (034520)

Jimbo, I read you comments and feel bad that the surgery has not helped! Your first podiatrist might have done a very competent surgery ( as confirmed by the second podiatrist ). The releasing of the fascia does tend to lower the arch. If this is true in your case, it might have agravated your tarsal tunnel which might have been or could be causing alot of your symptoms. You might want to consider a visit with a neurologist to find out at which level ( and there might be more than one ) that your nerves are being adjetated. Dr. B.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Dr. Zuckerman on 12/11/00 at 03:20 (034657)

The post-op healing can be very painful and take up to six months to one year. Alot of times the temporary casting can help rest the foot alot.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Tracey A on 1/07/01 at 16:36 (036085)

Jimbo, Sounds familiar to me. I'm 8 months post-op from the first surgery, I had 2nd surgery last Sept 2000, and I'm still in alot of pain. I had MRI December 20,2000 and it came back normal and my doctor has washed his hands of me. I have the feeling of walking on a rock and the pain has started going up the back of my leg into my calf. I've been out of work since June 2000 and the second doctor has released me back to work and told me to live with the pain. I too have thought about sueing the first doctor because he never told me of the possible complications plus the recovery time. 'he said I will make you better', he was wrong I'm worse. I have more pain plus different problems. Let me know how it goes,and I wish all the luck in the world.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Barbara TX on 12/06/00 at 12:34 (034314)

Jimbo - I don't know that you have an actionable case... you would have to prove that the doctor deviated from the standard of care in some way. Has your podiatrist expressed the opinion that the surgeon did something really wrong? This surgery takes a LONG time to recover from - and DON'T and I mean DON't despair! You still have another avenue to explore and that is ESWT - which has been effectively used to eliminate pf pain after surgeries from which there have been bad results. Stick with it and you can make it better!!! I am so sorry to hear about your job! I am a stay-at-home mom and I am close to losing my job around here. You have come to the right place for information and support! Thinking of you today, B.

P.S. If you are really concerned about the practicies of your doctor - you think that he is unprofessional and hasn't shown good faith, you might inquire with the your state board of medical examiners to see if there have been other complaints lodged against him. You can also visit http://www.footlaw.com .

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Jimbo on 12/06/00 at 19:03 (034350)

Thanks for the support Barbara. The new podiatrist, at first, felt that the doctor may not have released the fascia enough and that a follow up surgery may be necessary. When I told him that the Dr. removed the spur, he almost shook his head. The new Dr. said that it's the fascia that causes the pain not the spur. He also commented that I had too much scar tissue for a relatively simple surgery. But when he reviewed the MRI', x-rays, the operation report, and spoke with the Dr. who operated me; he changed his tune. After that he felt that the Dr. did a competent job. All doctor's try to protect and defend each other. And I think that after the Dr. spoke with my former podiatrist, he was cautious. All I know is that because of the surgery, I have twice the pain I had before, and I lost my job and benefits. I feel that I have a case against this Dr.

For now, I'm treating myself. I bought That German Ibuprophen gel and massage it in 3 times a day. I put ice on my foot when I need it. I'm doing non-impact exercises to strenghthen my muscles and to loose weight. The more weight I lose the better off my foot will be, because I'm a bit chubby.

How long does this have to take, Barbara? It's been a year since the surgery, and have made no significant improvement. That's a long time. Thank you for listing that website and thank you for your support.

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.Re Jimbo

Laurie R on 12/06/00 at 22:55 (034371)

Hi Jimbo,
First of all I would like to say that I am so sorry that your surgery did not help your foot . It really broke my heart to read your story today. I also lost my job due to PF but, I am on workmans comp and they are paying all my medical bills for my foot.

Now you are in even more pain then before your surgery??That is such a shame . Like I said I am very sorry this happened to you. Hang in there jimbo ,we are here for you... My very best to you, Laurie R

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Karen S on 12/07/00 at 00:09 (034373)

Oh my god. Everything you just described is exactly like my own situation. I had my surgery on June 29th of this year and am in my secondcast with it. After 3 months of physio after my first cast was off I was still in so much pain.

I've got alot of pain in places that I didn't have before surgery. I especially don't like the pain that goes around the bottom of my leg up into my calf. This is very painful and bothersome.

Thanks...Karen

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Julie F on 12/07/00 at 02:39 (034378)

Jimbo, Barbara mentioned ESWT - Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy. Do investigate this. Dr Zuckerman gave the url where you can inform yourself about it on another thread yesterday: it's

http://heelspurs.com/eswt/where.cgi?go=search

He has often said that ESWT is an appropriate treatment for people like yourself who have had surgery unsuccessfully. It is non-invasive, and according to all reports, without side effects. You can also call his office and speak to Katie, his ESWT co-ordinator. I hope you will look into this avenue of possible help before you consider another surgery.

All the best, Julie

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Jimbo on 12/07/00 at 09:38 (034400)

I'm sorry to hear of your situation, Karen. I really feel that these surgical procedures fail more than 50% of the time. These doctors don't want to admit it, though. They just want to line their pockets with money.

Hang in there,

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.Re Jimbo

Jimbo on 12/07/00 at 09:39 (034402)

Thnak you, Laurie.

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.

john h on 12/07/00 at 09:42 (034404)

did the surgeon totally release the entire fascia jimbo? if so why?

Re: One year after PF surgery.

john h on 12/07/00 at 09:45 (034405)

jimbo: if the doctor released the entire fascia or most of it did he suggest that you wear a supportive orthotic since you will have lost most of the fascia that supports your foot?

Re: One year after PF surgery.

john h on 12/07/00 at 09:47 (034406)

karen: do not lose faith so early. it can take up to a year to heal and it is rather common to have various new pains during the healing process.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Barbara TX on 12/07/00 at 15:31 (034424)

Jimbo - I've heard that it takes six months to a year - but if you have gotten WORSE, something needs to be done now. I wonder about your post-surgical treatment. Did you take a lot of time to rest, or did you start bearing weight immediately? Were you prescribed a hard cast, removable cast, or custom orthotic support? It is a common practice in the U.S. to remove the heel spur, so I don't think that that is a deviation from the standard of care. Happens all the time (but less than it used to). When you get a heel spur removed, you can injure the underlying bone and fracture it. On the bottom of the heel bone is lots of semi-soft bone that takes a really long time to heal, but it does. This would show up on a Bone Scan or MRI. This would cause SIGNIFICANT PAIN. Have you had these tests done post-surgery? I would get one done and arrange for a ESWT consultation or second opinion before any surgery. I know that you don't have insurance, but did you know that Dr. Zuckerman is running a ESWT lottery? He picks one name a month for a free course of treatment. It is a wonderful chance for someone who has the misfortune of not having insurance.

The most important thing I want you to remember is that this is not the rest of your life. Being down with anything for a year is frightening, frustrating, and just plain depressing. But you have lots of hope in ESWT. It could really jump-start your healing process. Consider it first.

Say - how are you making ends meet without your job??? All the best, B.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Karen S on 12/07/00 at 15:56 (034426)

Thanks Jimbo, you too. I agree with you on that one.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Karen S on 12/07/00 at 15:59 (034428)

Thanks John, I just thought it would have felt a bit better by now. I am trying to keep the faith, it just gets so depressing at times.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Jimbo on 12/07/00 at 17:20 (034433)

He didn't release the entire fascia. He said just enough to releave the tension. You can't cut away too much or else the foot muscles could collapse.

You wrote earlier to Karen that it takes one year to heal. It's been one year, already for me. I haven't felt a change. The pain changes. Somedays I can stand on my feet for up to one hour, but most of the time 15-20 minutes is all I can stand. Mostly I have bad days, with some good days now and then.

Jimbo

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Dr. Biehler on 12/08/00 at 19:46 (034520)

Jimbo, I read you comments and feel bad that the surgery has not helped! Your first podiatrist might have done a very competent surgery ( as confirmed by the second podiatrist ). The releasing of the fascia does tend to lower the arch. If this is true in your case, it might have agravated your tarsal tunnel which might have been or could be causing alot of your symptoms. You might want to consider a visit with a neurologist to find out at which level ( and there might be more than one ) that your nerves are being adjetated. Dr. B.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Dr. Zuckerman on 12/11/00 at 03:20 (034657)

The post-op healing can be very painful and take up to six months to one year. Alot of times the temporary casting can help rest the foot alot.

Re: One year after PF surgery.

Tracey A on 1/07/01 at 16:36 (036085)

Jimbo, Sounds familiar to me. I'm 8 months post-op from the first surgery, I had 2nd surgery last Sept 2000, and I'm still in alot of pain. I had MRI December 20,2000 and it came back normal and my doctor has washed his hands of me. I have the feeling of walking on a rock and the pain has started going up the back of my leg into my calf. I've been out of work since June 2000 and the second doctor has released me back to work and told me to live with the pain. I too have thought about sueing the first doctor because he never told me of the possible complications plus the recovery time. 'he said I will make you better', he was wrong I'm worse. I have more pain plus different problems. Let me know how it goes,and I wish all the luck in the world.