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Facing PF Surgery in December

Posted by Debbie W. on 11/15/02 at 20:48 (100327)

After several months of conservative treatment (cast, cortisone injection, Anti-inflammatory meds, etc.), my doc has suggested open PF surgery. I've scheduled it for December as work slows around the holidays. I work an administrative position, but have to get around to lots of meetings in various locations. Any suggestions on how long I should plan to be off work? My doc has said very little re: recuperation period, so I wonder aobut budgeting my time. How long off feet? On crutches? How will my foot be wrapped or casted after surgery? In general, what should I expect? I've suffered with PF for over two years, with most recent bout serious enough to require immobilization in an air cast for over two months due to significant pain. I've dealt with knee challenges for years, had surgery, etc. but have never experienced anything as frustrating as this foot situation. Getting impatient...any advice?

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

BrianJ on 11/15/02 at 22:34 (100338)

Hi Debbie --

I know from experience how painful and frustrating PF can be, as I've had it in both feet for five years now. Nonetheless, I must respectfully suggest you re-think your surgery decision -- at least for now. First, most doctors recommend conservative treatment for at least six months (and some say as much as a year) before considering surgery. Your post indicates you have had PF for two years but have been treated for only 'several months,' which leads me to believe you did not receive treatment until you had had PF for 18 months or so. When PF exists this long without treatment, it takes longer for conservative treatment to be successful (if indeed it will be successful). Second, in my opinion your doctor should never have scheduled you for surgery without first telling you exactly what to expect (in fairness, maybe he/she did, and you're asking the questions here just to double-check). Third, I would always get a second opinion from a qualified expert before getting this type of surgery. Fourth, have you and your doctor(s) diligently ruled out other possible causes of your foot pain? If you cannot confidently answer this question with a 'yes,' you should not yet get surgery. Fifth, have you considered ESWT? If not, you might want to do some research about it on this site.

Sorry to be so long-winded, but PF surgery is a big deal and should not be entered into lightly. We care about you! Please take a little more time to make sure surgery is the right decision.

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Lynn Mc on 11/16/02 at 09:20 (100375)

Debbie ......I just wanted to tell you of my positive results of PFR Surgery. I have been dealing with the problem in both feet for 5 years and have also had all of the conservative treatments . My left foot feels alot better now but my right continued to get worse and the doc finally told me there was nothing else to do but the surgery and because I had dealt with it for so long in that foot,I developed Tarsal Tunnel in that foot. I had my surgery on the 28th of Oct. and yesterday I finally got the stitches out and I am able to walk without crutches. It was very painful for the first week and after that it got better very day. Now that I am walking on it (I have a walking boot on)it is a little sore but not like before . The doc removed a peice of tissue that was as hard as a marble !!!!!! I had been telling them for years that it felt like I was walking on rocks !!!!!
I do advise that the surgery be a last resort ..The doc explained to me that if a person has truly been suffering with the problem for along time and all has failed then the surgery will at the very least give some relief which is all I had asked for because since June I had been stuck on the couch and not able to even go to the store. I do work and get to sit down alot but I did take 2 weeks off and so far it has worked out good. I do feel the recovery process will take time but It has been so far very worth it to me. Hope All Goes Well
Lynn

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Tonya on 11/16/02 at 13:38 (100415)

Debbie, I too wanted to tell you about my positive results from my surgery. I had the open fascia release on 09-May-02. I now consider myself to be about 80% better than before surgery. Of course, I still get tenderness every now and then, but no where near what I had pre-op, and my podiatrist did advise me that it could take up to one year before I could get a true feeling as to how this surgery has gone. I suffered from PF for approximately six years, and had been through all conservative treatment outside of ESWT. I had PF in both feet, but as of now have only had the procedure done on the right. I want to wait until at least next summer before i do the left. As for post-op procedure, i kept the surgical dressing on for one week, which was then removed, and I was placed in a cast(non-weight) for two weeks. Then I had the cast and stitches removed. At that time i was released to go partial weight bearing until I felt that i could do more. I must admit that i had to use the crutches for assistance for at least another month. My advice to you is to make sure that you have exhausted all other treatments before you opt for this surgery, and read through the posts on this board. A lot of people have not had the outcome that I have, and I am very greatful that things have gone so well for me. My last piece of advice, which is advice that was given to me by the people on this board, is if you have this surgery, listen to your foot. Do not rush your recovery or allow anyone to rush you. This includes your doctor. Your foot will be the best guage as to what you can or cannot tolerate. Good luck to you in whatever you decide, and God Bless. Tonya

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Stephanie on 12/06/02 at 09:42 (101959)

I had PF surgery in both feet, Right foot Nov 21, 2001 and Left foot Dec 21, 2001. Now a year later I still have pain after 2 hours on my feet and I still wear custom orthotics which only fit in 2 pair of shoes and sneakers. I still regularily go to my podiatrist for check, change medication, etc. Im very frustrated. My activities are more than than before surgery but Im still not satisfied. Standing still is the worse, I last about 20 minutes. My doctor doesn't feel any inflamanation in my foot like I had before surgery. Im on a medication called Neurontin and Amirotryptoline. Not sure why or what that does for me. Ive been on it for 2 weeks and according to the drug information, it takes 2 weeks to fulling get into your system to see results. I dont see any results. I want to get a second option now that Im a year over surgery. I did get a second opinion prior to surgery. Please respond with any information you have on what I should do. thanks. Stephanie

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

dave r on 12/06/02 at 11:36 (101980)

What type of surgery did you have? Was it the open procedure or the epf?
Also Amirotryptoline is a night time anti inflamatory and an anti depressant. i wasn on it for a long time. At least i could sleep at night.

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Steve H on 12/25/02 at 21:22 (103999)

What is PF? I am considering having foot surgery done for my feet - which have been damaged by arthritis. The surgery would involve fusing the joints in the feet. I am able to go several hours on my feet - but not as active as I would like to be. I get the overall impression from these posts that surgery should only be considered under more extreme conditions.

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Dr. Z on 12/25/02 at 22:25 (104002)

pf surgery doesn't involve fusing of any joint. Where is your foot pain. In the big toe joint. Please give more detail as to what surgery is being recommended for your foot pain

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

BrianJ on 11/15/02 at 22:34 (100338)

Hi Debbie --

I know from experience how painful and frustrating PF can be, as I've had it in both feet for five years now. Nonetheless, I must respectfully suggest you re-think your surgery decision -- at least for now. First, most doctors recommend conservative treatment for at least six months (and some say as much as a year) before considering surgery. Your post indicates you have had PF for two years but have been treated for only 'several months,' which leads me to believe you did not receive treatment until you had had PF for 18 months or so. When PF exists this long without treatment, it takes longer for conservative treatment to be successful (if indeed it will be successful). Second, in my opinion your doctor should never have scheduled you for surgery without first telling you exactly what to expect (in fairness, maybe he/she did, and you're asking the questions here just to double-check). Third, I would always get a second opinion from a qualified expert before getting this type of surgery. Fourth, have you and your doctor(s) diligently ruled out other possible causes of your foot pain? If you cannot confidently answer this question with a 'yes,' you should not yet get surgery. Fifth, have you considered ESWT? If not, you might want to do some research about it on this site.

Sorry to be so long-winded, but PF surgery is a big deal and should not be entered into lightly. We care about you! Please take a little more time to make sure surgery is the right decision.

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Lynn Mc on 11/16/02 at 09:20 (100375)

Debbie ......I just wanted to tell you of my positive results of PFR Surgery. I have been dealing with the problem in both feet for 5 years and have also had all of the conservative treatments . My left foot feels alot better now but my right continued to get worse and the doc finally told me there was nothing else to do but the surgery and because I had dealt with it for so long in that foot,I developed Tarsal Tunnel in that foot. I had my surgery on the 28th of Oct. and yesterday I finally got the stitches out and I am able to walk without crutches. It was very painful for the first week and after that it got better very day. Now that I am walking on it (I have a walking boot on)it is a little sore but not like before . The doc removed a peice of tissue that was as hard as a marble !!!!!! I had been telling them for years that it felt like I was walking on rocks !!!!!
I do advise that the surgery be a last resort ..The doc explained to me that if a person has truly been suffering with the problem for along time and all has failed then the surgery will at the very least give some relief which is all I had asked for because since June I had been stuck on the couch and not able to even go to the store. I do work and get to sit down alot but I did take 2 weeks off and so far it has worked out good. I do feel the recovery process will take time but It has been so far very worth it to me. Hope All Goes Well
Lynn

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Tonya on 11/16/02 at 13:38 (100415)

Debbie, I too wanted to tell you about my positive results from my surgery. I had the open fascia release on 09-May-02. I now consider myself to be about 80% better than before surgery. Of course, I still get tenderness every now and then, but no where near what I had pre-op, and my podiatrist did advise me that it could take up to one year before I could get a true feeling as to how this surgery has gone. I suffered from PF for approximately six years, and had been through all conservative treatment outside of ESWT. I had PF in both feet, but as of now have only had the procedure done on the right. I want to wait until at least next summer before i do the left. As for post-op procedure, i kept the surgical dressing on for one week, which was then removed, and I was placed in a cast(non-weight) for two weeks. Then I had the cast and stitches removed. At that time i was released to go partial weight bearing until I felt that i could do more. I must admit that i had to use the crutches for assistance for at least another month. My advice to you is to make sure that you have exhausted all other treatments before you opt for this surgery, and read through the posts on this board. A lot of people have not had the outcome that I have, and I am very greatful that things have gone so well for me. My last piece of advice, which is advice that was given to me by the people on this board, is if you have this surgery, listen to your foot. Do not rush your recovery or allow anyone to rush you. This includes your doctor. Your foot will be the best guage as to what you can or cannot tolerate. Good luck to you in whatever you decide, and God Bless. Tonya

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Stephanie on 12/06/02 at 09:42 (101959)

I had PF surgery in both feet, Right foot Nov 21, 2001 and Left foot Dec 21, 2001. Now a year later I still have pain after 2 hours on my feet and I still wear custom orthotics which only fit in 2 pair of shoes and sneakers. I still regularily go to my podiatrist for check, change medication, etc. Im very frustrated. My activities are more than than before surgery but Im still not satisfied. Standing still is the worse, I last about 20 minutes. My doctor doesn't feel any inflamanation in my foot like I had before surgery. Im on a medication called Neurontin and Amirotryptoline. Not sure why or what that does for me. Ive been on it for 2 weeks and according to the drug information, it takes 2 weeks to fulling get into your system to see results. I dont see any results. I want to get a second option now that Im a year over surgery. I did get a second opinion prior to surgery. Please respond with any information you have on what I should do. thanks. Stephanie

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

dave r on 12/06/02 at 11:36 (101980)

What type of surgery did you have? Was it the open procedure or the epf?
Also Amirotryptoline is a night time anti inflamatory and an anti depressant. i wasn on it for a long time. At least i could sleep at night.

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Steve H on 12/25/02 at 21:22 (103999)

What is PF? I am considering having foot surgery done for my feet - which have been damaged by arthritis. The surgery would involve fusing the joints in the feet. I am able to go several hours on my feet - but not as active as I would like to be. I get the overall impression from these posts that surgery should only be considered under more extreme conditions.

Re: Facing PF Surgery in December

Dr. Z on 12/25/02 at 22:25 (104002)

pf surgery doesn't involve fusing of any joint. Where is your foot pain. In the big toe joint. Please give more detail as to what surgery is being recommended for your foot pain