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Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Posted by Ken A. on 2/12/02 at 11:14 (073432)

After many avenues, highways and byways, I have decided to go ahead and do the surgery thing...I know some of you may disagree with this route, but I have decided to 'take control' of the situation...I have researched and found the best docs in my area, and that is what I feel is best for me...I'm gonna ask this again since so few of you replied before...Are there any question that I should ask my doc? Is there anything I need to know about the surgery itself? I come to this support group seeking support and encouragement, not horror stories or anything meant to 'scare' me out of the surgery...I just ask for the group's help and any input provided will be greatly appreciated...
Thanks Ken
PS am I for getting to ask anything??

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Tammie on 2/12/02 at 11:27 (073434)

I understand I was where you are at a while back! Ok I offer the advice of talking with the dr. about control of pain ! Is he going to supply adequate pain meds for as LONG as you need. Please don't think that because you are a man that you can handle it, as it is better to keep up with the meds as when you skip the pain gets out of control and harder to get relief!(I am not a med lover) Please ask how he expects the treatment to progress, What is the things I need to worry about that MAY occur. What are some of normal feeling I should espect, (nervy?throbbing? ) anyways you get my drift! It is very hard to continue the healing progress when you are worried over things.Ask what does he mean about limited walking? A 10 min? a hour all day what? How long aprox if all is normal, would you expect me to be at about 75% 100%. It might help understanding long term healing.

What type of things should I not do and beware of. What if this does not work what then? What if the painis more then you think, ow will you treat it and me?What if I feel to good, should I refrain from certain things so as to not do harm? If crutches or other , explain how to use them properly and for how long and how much weight allowed on sore foot. It is difficult to know what to ask and some questions might not seem important but from one who had difficulty in talking with my dr. It is worth the effort to talk and make sure he can take care of the total you and not just the surgery site.( Meaning that pain is real, and that you will be afraid that things are not going well or that goig to well or you get the pic> if he is not willing to work with you as a whole or u find he does not have a good repoir with you u might want to get additional dr. help to. Well I could go on and on as I am long winded but this is a start and I must leave for my own important appt with a new dr. again! Good Luck and most of all come back and let us know how u are doing and even for a bit of support thu it! Our prayers will be with you and we will be here .

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

JudyS on 2/12/02 at 12:26 (073446)

Actually, Ken, there are probably very few folks here who would disagree with your surgical decision. The one thing we've certainly learned here is 'to each his own' and we embrace the respect that goes along with that.
Remember, the majority of PF surgeries are successful. Remember too that you're already well on your way to success just by 'taking control', as you say. I believe so strongly that the one most serious thing foot problems do to us is rob us of our sense of control. Once we regain at least some of it, our worlds can change dramatically.
Have you already learned which type of surgery your doc will do? If you're unsure about the (3 main) types of surgery you might want to explore them first. Many times the individual doc will have his or her favorite type while another doc may use one of the others. Some folks here would, after having learned a bunch, insist upon a certain method.
I hope you'll keep us posted as to your surgical date, post-surgery progress, etc. Best wishes to you!

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Carole C in NOLA on 2/12/02 at 14:02 (073456)

Ken, I haven't had foot surgery but I've had other surgeries. Here are my suggestions. Be sure to ask the doctor how long you will need a caregiver after the surgery, how long it will be before you can get around on crutches, how long the physical therapy will last, and how long it will be before you can lead a normal life and do things like bathe or go back to work. THat way you can arrange for a caregiver, time off, and anything else you may need before you go into the hospital.

Ask him exactly what surgery he is going to do, how it is done, how long it takes, and how many of these he normally does per month. Find out what (if any) additional procedures he might do depending on what he finds during the surgery. Ask about medications you will need after the surgery, and what each of them does. Be sure to get a prescription for pain medication to use after the anaesthesia wears off. I don't know if you will need any, but it's best to have it available just in case. Also, if you don't have them ask about crutches (he might even lend you some).

Find out about follow up appointments. Will he need to remove stitches? what if it gets infected, or just doesn't look right to you somehow; can you get in to see him? Make sure you understand any physical limitations you will have during the recuperation period, and I really think if it were me I'd be pressuring him to set me up with a good physical therapist so that your recovery is smooth and fast. Good luck!

Carole C

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Laurie R on 2/12/02 at 14:54 (073469)

Hi Ken , I think some of us get to the point to where we have tried all we have tried and surgery is the next step ... I will also be having surgery , when I don't know at this point. I am on Workmans comp and they have made me do a lot of waiting . I was to have surgery last month in Jan . It was all set to go , then Comp dicided to cut me off all my medical treatment . I did get is all reinstated two weeks later . I am going to a second opinion on Feb 20th , per my Pod .

You must do what is best for you ... Yes I am sure you have read a lot of surgeries gone bad on the boards , but if you think about it , why would someone post if they had a great out come , I don't think they are on the internet on these boards , they are out living their life.

If you don't mind can you give us your backround . How long have you had PF for ? Do you have also have TTS or any other foot problems ?
How long have you had foot problems for ?

I would ask your doctor what type of surgery he or she is going to do ? If you will be in a cast ? How long do they think it will take you to recover ? Also make sure you get the right pain meds for the first few days that are going to help with the surgical pain ...

Please let me know if I could be any help to you . I am here and always ready to help anyone ...

My very best to you , Laurie R

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Ken A. on 2/12/02 at 17:58 (073511)

My disorder is TTS...My doc says there will be an incision made on the outside of the ankle to explore the TT region....I also have PF but the TTS is the BIG fish we are attempting to fry...I will do my best to baby the foot as best I can..work has allowed me a sit-down job, and even though not required by my doc, I use a cruthch...I know I only have one set of feet and being that I'm still young (under 25) i can hopefully bounce back
Ken

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

cindyp on 2/12/02 at 18:30 (073517)

Well to answer questions. I dont' know what you should specfically ask. I had mine 7 june 2001. I had to have someone with me for about 48hrs. as the drugs were wonderful. hehe. I had to have the foot up for awhile and periodically for about three months. I had 25 stitches but each case is different. I got a shoe on about 8 weeks. Had stitches out at 12 days. Was very sore after that. Went to a cane at about 5 weeks. Walk without a limp now. Just not a long distance. Still have had maybe 4 incidents of pain not anything to alarming. What else do ya need to know?
Get your meds for pain and stay on the schedule. It was hard to sleep on pillows.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Janet C on 2/13/02 at 12:28 (073617)

Hi Ken,

Are you sure the incision is going to be made on the OUTSIDE of the ankle? I think that's quite unusual... as far as I know, the incision to release the TT is usually on the INNER ankle.

I recommend you ask all the questions you can think of about the length of recovery, etc... but you might also ask your Dr. if he'd be willing to draw you a picture, or show you some diagram, so you can feel comfortable and confident about what he has planned to do for you.

I wish you all the best in your surgery and recovery,

Janet

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Carol C on 2/13/02 at 13:33 (073622)

KEN---GO FOR IT! YES, There is such a thing as successful TTS Surgery.
I am 12 weeks Post-Op TTS and at this point feel very successful with mine. I still have healing to do and it requires patience, which I don't
have a lot of---but my pain is so much less now than it was prior to surgery----I can say it was worth it all--ALREADY. My experience....
I had TTS and Carpal Tunnel Surgery at the same time, so I could NOT use
crutches. I used a Quad Cane for the first three or four weeks. I was
partial weight bearing on my foot from day one. I did have a problem with the sutures in my incision and it is still healing---but doing well.
I took pain medicine (Lorcet Plus) for the first couple of days and then
after that, Darvocet or Tylenol was able to control any other pain.
I felt immediate relief post operatively from a lot of my symptoms---
but they did find and remove a large cyst in the procedure. I continued
to have an area of numbness in my foot until about 2 weeks ago. That area, in the last two weeks has faded away and I have almost 100% of the
sensation back in my foot. I have some nervy sensations now that I did
not feel while it was still numb...but my surgeon says to expect that for
some time as the nerve is healing. I have found that my BEST FRIEND is
ICE and ELEVATION. I go to bed every night with an ice pack wrapped around
my ankle. I do still have some swelling and the ice helps with that as well as the tenderness. Some days, I get stupid and try to wear real
shoes---and I pay for that. The best plan for shoes is to count on your
'New Balance' tennis shoes. They provide good support and are comfortable when loosely laced. Just realize that this is going to be a long process of healing. My physician told me up front before he scheduled surgery that
I would need to expect a MINIMUM of a year of Recovery time----and I belive that it will take that long.........
Good luck and keep us posted.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Ken A. on 2/13/02 at 17:48 (073636)

it is the inside.. I made a typo :(

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

cindyp on 2/13/02 at 19:51 (073646)

happens to the best of us. you should ask you doc to explain what's going on and why and that should answer many questions. she would be more than happy to tell you i am sure.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Ken A. on 2/14/02 at 12:59 (073708)

I plan to ask my Doc as much as I can think...He has explained to me the procedure by showing me where the incision wil take place, what he will do once the incision is made, and even told me that immediately post-op I will be in a splint then after a couple of days, I will be in a cast...The Dr. is also letting the incision 'heal from the inside' meaning there will be no need to remove stiches...He also stated that after the cast, I get the ski boot thingy and will be a couple months before I can consider returning to full duty (my job is very 'active' and requires lifting, walkings, jogging, standing still, you name it...) So I may be able to return in 3 weeks to the desk job they graciously let me have (thank GOD for that college education) and just to take it easy and not rush anything...The doc says he has had success with procedures he's performed, though he admits there are risks...He has been honest with me and I feel through his experience, that I'm in good hands...
KEN

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

cindyp on 2/14/02 at 16:06 (073728)

take your time it will take awhile. no rush.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Tammie on 2/12/02 at 11:27 (073434)

I understand I was where you are at a while back! Ok I offer the advice of talking with the dr. about control of pain ! Is he going to supply adequate pain meds for as LONG as you need. Please don't think that because you are a man that you can handle it, as it is better to keep up with the meds as when you skip the pain gets out of control and harder to get relief!(I am not a med lover) Please ask how he expects the treatment to progress, What is the things I need to worry about that MAY occur. What are some of normal feeling I should espect, (nervy?throbbing? ) anyways you get my drift! It is very hard to continue the healing progress when you are worried over things.Ask what does he mean about limited walking? A 10 min? a hour all day what? How long aprox if all is normal, would you expect me to be at about 75% 100%. It might help understanding long term healing.

What type of things should I not do and beware of. What if this does not work what then? What if the painis more then you think, ow will you treat it and me?What if I feel to good, should I refrain from certain things so as to not do harm? If crutches or other , explain how to use them properly and for how long and how much weight allowed on sore foot. It is difficult to know what to ask and some questions might not seem important but from one who had difficulty in talking with my dr. It is worth the effort to talk and make sure he can take care of the total you and not just the surgery site.( Meaning that pain is real, and that you will be afraid that things are not going well or that goig to well or you get the pic> if he is not willing to work with you as a whole or u find he does not have a good repoir with you u might want to get additional dr. help to. Well I could go on and on as I am long winded but this is a start and I must leave for my own important appt with a new dr. again! Good Luck and most of all come back and let us know how u are doing and even for a bit of support thu it! Our prayers will be with you and we will be here .

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

JudyS on 2/12/02 at 12:26 (073446)

Actually, Ken, there are probably very few folks here who would disagree with your surgical decision. The one thing we've certainly learned here is 'to each his own' and we embrace the respect that goes along with that.
Remember, the majority of PF surgeries are successful. Remember too that you're already well on your way to success just by 'taking control', as you say. I believe so strongly that the one most serious thing foot problems do to us is rob us of our sense of control. Once we regain at least some of it, our worlds can change dramatically.
Have you already learned which type of surgery your doc will do? If you're unsure about the (3 main) types of surgery you might want to explore them first. Many times the individual doc will have his or her favorite type while another doc may use one of the others. Some folks here would, after having learned a bunch, insist upon a certain method.
I hope you'll keep us posted as to your surgical date, post-surgery progress, etc. Best wishes to you!

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Carole C in NOLA on 2/12/02 at 14:02 (073456)

Ken, I haven't had foot surgery but I've had other surgeries. Here are my suggestions. Be sure to ask the doctor how long you will need a caregiver after the surgery, how long it will be before you can get around on crutches, how long the physical therapy will last, and how long it will be before you can lead a normal life and do things like bathe or go back to work. THat way you can arrange for a caregiver, time off, and anything else you may need before you go into the hospital.

Ask him exactly what surgery he is going to do, how it is done, how long it takes, and how many of these he normally does per month. Find out what (if any) additional procedures he might do depending on what he finds during the surgery. Ask about medications you will need after the surgery, and what each of them does. Be sure to get a prescription for pain medication to use after the anaesthesia wears off. I don't know if you will need any, but it's best to have it available just in case. Also, if you don't have them ask about crutches (he might even lend you some).

Find out about follow up appointments. Will he need to remove stitches? what if it gets infected, or just doesn't look right to you somehow; can you get in to see him? Make sure you understand any physical limitations you will have during the recuperation period, and I really think if it were me I'd be pressuring him to set me up with a good physical therapist so that your recovery is smooth and fast. Good luck!

Carole C

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Laurie R on 2/12/02 at 14:54 (073469)

Hi Ken , I think some of us get to the point to where we have tried all we have tried and surgery is the next step ... I will also be having surgery , when I don't know at this point. I am on Workmans comp and they have made me do a lot of waiting . I was to have surgery last month in Jan . It was all set to go , then Comp dicided to cut me off all my medical treatment . I did get is all reinstated two weeks later . I am going to a second opinion on Feb 20th , per my Pod .

You must do what is best for you ... Yes I am sure you have read a lot of surgeries gone bad on the boards , but if you think about it , why would someone post if they had a great out come , I don't think they are on the internet on these boards , they are out living their life.

If you don't mind can you give us your backround . How long have you had PF for ? Do you have also have TTS or any other foot problems ?
How long have you had foot problems for ?

I would ask your doctor what type of surgery he or she is going to do ? If you will be in a cast ? How long do they think it will take you to recover ? Also make sure you get the right pain meds for the first few days that are going to help with the surgical pain ...

Please let me know if I could be any help to you . I am here and always ready to help anyone ...

My very best to you , Laurie R

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Ken A. on 2/12/02 at 17:58 (073511)

My disorder is TTS...My doc says there will be an incision made on the outside of the ankle to explore the TT region....I also have PF but the TTS is the BIG fish we are attempting to fry...I will do my best to baby the foot as best I can..work has allowed me a sit-down job, and even though not required by my doc, I use a cruthch...I know I only have one set of feet and being that I'm still young (under 25) i can hopefully bounce back
Ken

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

cindyp on 2/12/02 at 18:30 (073517)

Well to answer questions. I dont' know what you should specfically ask. I had mine 7 june 2001. I had to have someone with me for about 48hrs. as the drugs were wonderful. hehe. I had to have the foot up for awhile and periodically for about three months. I had 25 stitches but each case is different. I got a shoe on about 8 weeks. Had stitches out at 12 days. Was very sore after that. Went to a cane at about 5 weeks. Walk without a limp now. Just not a long distance. Still have had maybe 4 incidents of pain not anything to alarming. What else do ya need to know?
Get your meds for pain and stay on the schedule. It was hard to sleep on pillows.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Janet C on 2/13/02 at 12:28 (073617)

Hi Ken,

Are you sure the incision is going to be made on the OUTSIDE of the ankle? I think that's quite unusual... as far as I know, the incision to release the TT is usually on the INNER ankle.

I recommend you ask all the questions you can think of about the length of recovery, etc... but you might also ask your Dr. if he'd be willing to draw you a picture, or show you some diagram, so you can feel comfortable and confident about what he has planned to do for you.

I wish you all the best in your surgery and recovery,

Janet

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Carol C on 2/13/02 at 13:33 (073622)

KEN---GO FOR IT! YES, There is such a thing as successful TTS Surgery.
I am 12 weeks Post-Op TTS and at this point feel very successful with mine. I still have healing to do and it requires patience, which I don't
have a lot of---but my pain is so much less now than it was prior to surgery----I can say it was worth it all--ALREADY. My experience....
I had TTS and Carpal Tunnel Surgery at the same time, so I could NOT use
crutches. I used a Quad Cane for the first three or four weeks. I was
partial weight bearing on my foot from day one. I did have a problem with the sutures in my incision and it is still healing---but doing well.
I took pain medicine (Lorcet Plus) for the first couple of days and then
after that, Darvocet or Tylenol was able to control any other pain.
I felt immediate relief post operatively from a lot of my symptoms---
but they did find and remove a large cyst in the procedure. I continued
to have an area of numbness in my foot until about 2 weeks ago. That area, in the last two weeks has faded away and I have almost 100% of the
sensation back in my foot. I have some nervy sensations now that I did
not feel while it was still numb...but my surgeon says to expect that for
some time as the nerve is healing. I have found that my BEST FRIEND is
ICE and ELEVATION. I go to bed every night with an ice pack wrapped around
my ankle. I do still have some swelling and the ice helps with that as well as the tenderness. Some days, I get stupid and try to wear real
shoes---and I pay for that. The best plan for shoes is to count on your
'New Balance' tennis shoes. They provide good support and are comfortable when loosely laced. Just realize that this is going to be a long process of healing. My physician told me up front before he scheduled surgery that
I would need to expect a MINIMUM of a year of Recovery time----and I belive that it will take that long.........
Good luck and keep us posted.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Ken A. on 2/13/02 at 17:48 (073636)

it is the inside.. I made a typo :(

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

cindyp on 2/13/02 at 19:51 (073646)

happens to the best of us. you should ask you doc to explain what's going on and why and that should answer many questions. she would be more than happy to tell you i am sure.

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

Ken A. on 2/14/02 at 12:59 (073708)

I plan to ask my Doc as much as I can think...He has explained to me the procedure by showing me where the incision wil take place, what he will do once the incision is made, and even told me that immediately post-op I will be in a splint then after a couple of days, I will be in a cast...The Dr. is also letting the incision 'heal from the inside' meaning there will be no need to remove stiches...He also stated that after the cast, I get the ski boot thingy and will be a couple months before I can consider returning to full duty (my job is very 'active' and requires lifting, walkings, jogging, standing still, you name it...) So I may be able to return in 3 weeks to the desk job they graciously let me have (thank GOD for that college education) and just to take it easy and not rush anything...The doc says he has had success with procedures he's performed, though he admits there are risks...He has been honest with me and I feel through his experience, that I'm in good hands...
KEN

Re: Surgery Scheduled for the 28th

cindyp on 2/14/02 at 16:06 (073728)

take your time it will take awhile. no rush.