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TTS surgery results

Posted by Buck on 8/27/04 at 11:32 (158805)

It seems the majority of the discussion on the surgery board is about PF release. I assume the success, recovery and decisions to have the surgery are different between TTS release and PF release.

I have done just about everything you can do conservatively to treat this and now am beginning to lean towards having the TTS decompression surgery. I still am not able to match the symptoms exactly, mainly I do not have the classic tinel sign, but do have a tremendous tenderness in that area and burning, numbness and tingling on both feet and toes.

For those of you that have had TTS decompression surgery, if you could post and describe how it has been for you I would appreciate it. As you post could you also indicate when you had the surgery, one or both feet, pain level before and after, and would you do it again.

Also if you remember someone else from the board or elsewhere that had the surgery if you could pass on how they did.

There was a comment from another poster that the success of the TTS surgery is so rare. I think the success is probably a bit better than rare. Since it is likely that most of the success stories would be written by people who may not have same passion and pain we have to investigate what we can do.

Hopefully the comments will help determine whether or not to proceed with the surgery. It seems that the worst case is that you are no worse off other than down time and painful recovery time.

If that is all then I would like to pursue all options available to get these feets feeling better.


Re: TTS surgery results

Kara S. on 8/27/04 at 12:10 (158809)

Thinking back to PRE-surgery - one thinks surgery HAS GOT to help and you've tried everything else - so go for it. You will know when the pain is bad enough. For some it does help - for some it doesn't. BUT ... recovery time is long, slow and painful. I wouldn't have believed it could take so long. Also, during the recovery period one always wonders to themselves, did I make a mistake; did the surgery help; why isn't it getting better; and on and on. It could be a couple or more years before you'd want to go through that again with the second foot.
#1 criteria for surgery: GET THE MOST KNOWLEDGEABLE DOCTOR YOU CAN (regardless if insurance covers it or not or if he ls located near your city). That man would be Dr. Dellon. The wrong surgeon can do extreme harm.
#2 criteria: Be patient. It will be a long, slow process for recovery.
#3 criteria: Be responsible in recuperating - i.e., physical therapy, necessary exercises, totally aware of your body's health and your mental health. Be aware of scar tissue forming; be aware of potential blood clots; prepare against wound infection. You almost have to put your life on hold for at least a year and deal with this. But what's one year out of a potential life-span of 80+ years.
#4 criteria: never give up.

Re: TTS surgery results

Geri on 8/29/04 at 15:15 (158923)

PREsurgery is very vivid in my mind as it was only 10 months ago. My pain was so bad I knew surgery was my only option. Nothing else helped the pain and I tried everything. Like Kara said you will know when it is time.
I agree with Kara on the three points but want to emphasize the expectations during the recovery period. At first as the nerves woke up the pain was worse than before surgery for awhile. I had no idea this would happen. It started getting better the 3-4 month and by 6 months It was tolerable with some medication and of course very limited walking and standing. At 10 months I can wear different shoes, get my foot more comfortable for sleeping. Still very limited in duration of walking and standing. The pain can get severe if I walk to much. It takes 2 vicoden several times to calm it down. So patience is a reality with this horrible condition. It rules my life, my husbands life, and my friends life. I have good days(no medication for pain) and bad days where I need medication. My life is on hold. We want to build a bigger house. Before we can we need to know if I can walk from one end to another.
That is questionable now at 10 months post-op. There are so many things to consider before you decide surgery but there is no question it needs to be the last option you choose. It will take over your life,however,like Kara I feel 2 or 3 years from now I will say it has been worth it.

Re: TTS surgery results

chris on 8/30/04 at 08:06 (158952)

Buck - you can do a search, I think, to find some of posts about tts surgery.

Briefly, I had tts and pf surgery in Nov '00. Pain level prior - let's just say I begged for them to cut off my foot - pain level now - none!!! I am 100% better and woudl have surgery again, if hte pain ever returns.

Re: chris

Darlene on 8/30/04 at 10:15 (158965)

It's good to hear some great post surgery results.

Do you know what the cause of your tts was? What type of surgeon did you go to?

Re: chris

chris on 8/30/04 at 13:34 (158982)

The best I can come up with was a twisted ankle while walking to work in the snow - nothing real serious just landed wrong on the side of the side walk that was buried under snow.

My doctor was an ortho with the military.

Re: TTS surgery results

Terri on 8/31/04 at 20:01 (159067)

Kara makes some very valid points, especially need to find a dr that not only does this surgery on a somewhat regular basis, but has a high success rate. That's what I failed to check on and it's cost me.

I have TTS in both feet, operated on the right foot Jan 2nd this year. Have since changed dr's and now trying to find ways to non-surgically reduce the scar tissue that developed. For me, absolutely no improvement in pain levels, just added problems. I had my 2nd cortisone shot today and did feel some improvements from the 1st one 2 weeks ago. I can now walk barefoot into the kitchen for a cup of coffee with walking on my toes, much better feeling in the heel area, less pain.

I'm just resigned to the fact that it's here, I'll have to deal with it and adjust accordingly.

Re: TTS surgery results

Maai on 9/01/04 at 18:49 (159115)

I had TTS surgery 2.5 months ago. Surgery went great and I rarely needed the pain meds. However, the pain continues. So is this a slow healing process like others have mentioned, or is this permanent? Don't really know. I was starting to get depressed recently but reading the comments of others about a long recovery time has boosted my hopes again. Right now my biggest issue is waking up in the middle of the night with a burning foot. The post-op meds take care of that and I need to try a couple of Advil to see if they'll work.

By the way, my pain had started only six months pre-surgery. I interviewed a number of people around the medical field and they said that basically it's a respectable surgery and that things will only get worse without it, in that compressing a nerve will always lead to worse things.

My doc says he's done about 100 a year for 20 years. His group did a study a few years back, interviewing patients several years after surgery, and found a 92% success rate. Hope I become one of them!

Re: TTS surgery results

Terri on 9/01/04 at 19:09 (159116)

Wow! Who is your dr and where is he located?

Re: Thanks

Buck on 9/02/04 at 11:02 (159162)

I seem to go back and forth on this. I did not think I matched as many of the symptoms, but last night I read through the list from this site and was amazed at how many I did match.

The one I did not have was the Tinel sign but yesterday I noticed that as I was scratching my ankle I had a slight shock down into my toes with each scratch. This repeated itself several times during the day.

Even though not terrific in pain, it seems to be similiar to the desriptions of the Tinel sign.

Still have a few weeks before I decide to wait more or proceed.

I appreciate your comments as well as the others.