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excessive scar tissue after surgery on baby toe

Posted by nick c on 11/15/03 at 03:25 (137575)

hi. i'm 40 and male. if i could only turn back the clock and not have had this done... i went to a DPM about another issue and he noted my small toes bent in and under my 4th toe. i told him they hurt in dress shoes (even well fitting and roomy shoes) and he suggested correcting it- said it would only get worse with age. he shortened them ALOT (something i will never understand). i work from home and was religious about keeping them elevated all the time (day and night). i wrapped them like he said; but i had to be careful- if i wrapped too tight they cramped REALLY bad. despite being a 'good patient', both toes doubled in size from scar tissue. he did a bunch of injections- didn't help. he did a 2nd operation to remove the scar tissue (he said he'd never seen anything like it- it's that much). both toes were tiny when he was done but, just as before, grew more and more (despite being even more aggressive with the injections) and they're short, VERY thick and, to add insult to injury, still curve under my 4th toe. they hurt in any dress shoe and cramp up a few times a week- often for no apparent reason. i've lived with it for 2 years like this and cannot any more. as an aside, they look horrible too and make my feet look funny. i've even had people comment.

my question, of course, is: what can i do? he suggested radiation to kill the scar tissue or a 3rd surgery followed by radiation.


Re: excessive scar tissue after surgery on baby toe

Dorothy on 11/15/03 at 17:45 (137603)

Nick C. ~ Your situation sounds very complex and I am sorry you have had this to deal with. It is so difficult - in hindsight - to know that you were just being a trusting 'good patient' and following your doctor's suggestions. Are you describing a problem that is painful or cosmetic? I was not clear about that. As to your specific situation, I hope that doctors or those with possibly similar experiences will respond to you.

As for others' reading about your experience and what we might all learn from it - I think one of the 'lessons' is to be VERY skeptical and VERY reluctant to go into any surgery, especially an elective one. As so many have said, surgery cannot be undone and it always results in scar tissue and it may make things worse.

You have my best wishes for finding really good help and advice here and elsewhere. I am not a doctor nor do I have similar experience. All I can offer is good wishes - and possibly the suggestion that you consider that other foot problems might ensue from the structural changes that have been done to your feet. I don't know this for sure but such a change might make you susceptible to plantar's fasciitis (PF) and other foot/ankle problems or problems where your gait and and your efforts to compensate for pain, balance, etc. might affect feet, ankles, knees, hips, back.... It's all related, even from the little toe. I don't want to be negative or alarmist, just urging you to consider all aspects of how you proceed from this point on. Again, good luck.

Re: excessive scar tissue after surgery on baby toe

nick c on 11/18/03 at 18:26 (137893)

thanks for the kind words Dorothy. my scar tissue problem seems to be worse than usually seen. hopefully one of the DPM's will psot a suggestion...

thanks again.


Re: excessive scar tissue after surgery on baby toe

BrianG on 11/19/03 at 16:58 (137990)


Check it out,
BrianG, not a doc

Re: excessive scar tissue after surgery on baby toe

nick c on 11/19/03 at 17:15 (137992)

hi Brian.

thanks for the link; but i am really not interested in going after the dr. i think he meant well; but the complications in my case are over his head. that's why i'm not going back to him for a 3rd operation. i'd much rather find someone who has confronted my excessive scar tissue problem and knows how to handle it (instead of guessing, like he is). that's why i posted here. i guess i thought, from looking @ other posts, that a DPM would respond. unfortunately, none has.

Re: excessive scar tissue after surgery on baby toe

Dorothy on 11/19/03 at 17:45 (137998)

I wish so, too, nick c. because your question seems to call for professional advice. Maybe there are other posters who have dealt with excessive scar tissue who can speak with you about their experience. I do hope you get some answers. Keep trying!