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Having Surgery in Dec.

Posted by Dave C on 11/20/03 at 12:59 (138091)

I am having PF surgery on my left foot in December after 2yrs of orthodics, cortizone shots and what I call 'constant nuisance heel pain'.(Like a bad tooth). I have an Xxlarge Heel Spur(POD DX). I want to thank all who have posted under the surgery section of the message board. Through all of your stories good or bad I have learned that to expect,different types of rehab,recovery expectations, etc. But most of all WHAT QUESTIONS TO ASK!!!!!! I hope to be a regular contributer to this page post op.


Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

SteveG on 11/20/03 at 13:40 (138100)

I know you are aware of this, but what about ESWT? Have you tried this option. I would get at least 2 shock treatments before I considered surgery

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Pauline on 11/20/03 at 16:47 (138141)

Good we need you!

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Bud P. on 11/21/03 at 07:38 (138209)

I just had surgery 12 days ago. I went through all the same things you've mentioned. My surgery was EPF. Ask anything you want and I'll try to answer. I didn't have a spur yet but I imagine in time I would have developed one. Bud

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Dave C on 11/21/03 at 23:22 (138326)


Can you describe 48 hours post op? IE could you move freely, travel? What type of meds did pod prescribe?


Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Bud P. on 11/22/03 at 05:35 (138328)

I was able to get to the bathroom or go to room to room. I limited my activities. I have been on crutches and have a boot on my foot. Day 3 and 4 were the the bad days. I was already on pain meds, so the Dr didn't prescribe any thing more. But he would normally prescribe Vicodin. I was able to drive and on day 3 drove myself to the post op visit. But I only live 5 min. away. Bud

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Jen L on 11/22/03 at 11:29 (138365)

If I had a foot pain just like what you described 'constant nuisance heel pain (Like a bad tooth)', I would NOT consider surgery as the right treatment for now.
Surgery carries the risks that can turn a nuisance into a lifetime regret -just my impression from reading of many people's fist hand experiences; on the other hand, even a debilitating heel pain can be resolved with noninvasive options such as ESWT plus TIME and PATIENCE.
The question, in my opinion you should ask yourself is should I cancel the surgery?

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Joe B. on 11/25/03 at 08:16 (138614)


I'm glad you plan to be a contributor after your surgery, that is what
this board is all about, helping each other through this nasty business.

I had EPF surgery in January, wore a hard cast for 3 weeks. I was able
to hobble without crutches to the bathroom immediately. There was pain,
but I resisted any pain medication other than Advil. That is the good news.

I started having nerve pain up the outside of my foot, which I had never before, plus still had pain in my arch and heel. The nerve pain got
so bad I saw a neurologist who gave me an anti-inflammotory and preached
patience because invasive surgery can cause nerve trauma that will heal
but takes time. It has since calmed down, but my PF still hurts, although not as bad as before surgery. I do not consider my surgery successful.

If my insurance covered ESWT, I would have tried that first. If yours does, try to avoid getting cut unless it is the last resort.

Hope this gives you a heads-up on possible problems. Best of luck and ket us know how you make out.


Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

john k on 11/25/03 at 15:00 (138656)

I know that surgery is going to cause scar tissue. My VA podiatrist stated this to me yesterday. How can you remove scar tissue. If you cut it away you cause more scar tissue. I backed out of my PF surgery and I am glad I did. I have had two other orthopedic type surgeries and both failed. I think you would want to get many opinions on this before letting them cut. Most of the docs I saw did not think the surgery would work for me but I was wanting a solution. So my feet hurt like hell now but I am able to walk. This could turn out to be a big deal. Life does not look that great in a wheelchair.

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Dorothy on 11/25/03 at 15:33 (138670)

Your first point about surgery causing scar tissue, then removing scar tissue causes more scar tissue....is one great question. What does your doctor say about this?
And even if you are opting out of more surgery, are you getting help for the pain you are having?
I hope you find improvement, John K.

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

john k on 11/25/03 at 16:36 (138688)


Well, my regular long time Pod does not really believe in surgery to treat PF. He told me that he did not think ESWT would help me. The veterans administration pods have always been against surgery. I think they see a big donwside risk that includes more scar tissue and nerve damage. They have no ax to grind since they don't get paid to do more surgery so I kind of believe them. They don't seem to have any information on ESWT. My other surgeries were on my wrist and shoulder. Now I am gun shy of going under the knife for anything that is not critical.

My feet hurt really badly so I am taping them which helps. I don't think anyone should rush into having their foot cut open. I understand why people do the surgery out of frustration and pain. The worst part is not being able to stand or walk for even moderate periods. I stood for about 15 minutes yesterday and now my feet feel like hell.

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

april l on 11/25/03 at 21:33 (138731)

I had the EPF surgery in august and I consider it a success. This was my second time around, having had the same done 5 yrs. ago on my other foot. That was also a success. It took a long time for my first surgery to heal and I am 100% pain free in that foot. Three months post surgery on my left foot now and it is much better than before surgery. I understand that many people that post here have had bad outcomes after the surgery. Maybe I am in the minority, I don't know, but from my own experience, I would do it again in a heartbeat rather than suffer the extreme pain that I went thru prior to surgery. Bt the way, my surgeries were 5 yrs. apart and done by two different podiatrists. I also had physical therapy afterwards.

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

john k on 11/26/03 at 08:32 (138754)

I am glad to see someone has been helped by surgery.

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Bud P on 12/01/03 at 07:38 (139081)

I had surgery 21 days ago and my foot feels much better than before the surgery. I still have some minor pain from the surgery and I'm waiting to see if it goes away before I declare my surgery a success.Surgery is a major decision and only you know how bad you hurt. I think everyone has a point and when they reach that point they know when to make a decision. I'll keep this board updated on my progress. I'm not advocating surgery nor am I against it, there have been many people that has benifited from surgery. They just don't come back and post their progress. Sadly most post are on the surgeries that went wrong. Dr. Z post a great deal of informitive messages on this board. I've read many good ones. I think he reccomends ESWT. You may want to give it a try first. Bud

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

john k on 12/02/03 at 09:55 (139148)

Thanks for the comments Bud. I was told I was not a good candidate for ESWT since I don't have first step pain. I have pain after being on my feet for a while.

Re: Having Surgery in Dec.

Dave C on 12/09/03 at 11:20 (139650)

How are things going so far for you?


Re: Having Surgery in Dec. To Dave

Bud P on 12/10/03 at 07:51 (139715)

Things are going good right now. I justed updated Sher on my progress,you can read it and see. So far I'm satisfied with the surgery. When is yours scheduled. Bud

Re: Having Surgery in Dec. To Dave

Dave C on 12/10/03 at 11:55 (139748)

This Friday,

Yes I saw it right after I posted my message, I'm glad things are good for you.

Dave Caissie

Re: Having Surgery in Dec. To Dave

Bud P on 12/10/03 at 16:22 (139758)

What is it you're having done. EPF?