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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board


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I had a bone spur on top of my foot and an arthritic tarso-metarsal joint, and my orthopedic surgeon recommended a procedure that I now know was a modified Lapidus, with removal of the spur and fusion of that joint with two screws. I had the surgery on September 23. I realize this will probably be very different from other reports you'll see, but it really wasn't as bad as what other people experienced. I had 12-hour time-release oxycontin which I took religiously so the pain never really had a chance to start, along with percoset (1 or 2 every 4 hours) for any breakthrough pain. The minute I felt anything at all down there I took one of those and it did the job.
On the fifth day after surgery I saw the doctor so he could remove the splint and check the incision. He put me in one of those big black plastic pneumatic boots at that point because he said he couldn't see the point in putting on a cast that he'd have to take off a week later when he removed the stitches. That evening, believe it or not, we went out for supper. It might not have been the smartest thing I ever did, but it took care of the cabin fever and gave me some confidence about my ability to navigate with crutches other than hobbling across the hall at home to the bathroom.
10 days after the surgery I was able to drive to my office (I'm a newspaper editor) and spend a few hours there. People at work were wonderful about fetching and taking care of me. Went in again half-time a few times that week. I got tired right after lunch (still do), so I've built in a nice long nap every afternoon and wake up in time for supper feeling like a new person.
Two weeks after surgery, the doc removed the sutures and put on a fiberglass cast. Two weeks later (yesterday), he removed that cast, took off the steri-strips and put on another cast. I'm returning in 2 1/2 weeks to have that cast removed and go to the boot, which at that point he said would be removable -- for showering, I'm assuming.
So here's the deal -- When people say "everyone is different," believe it. Pain meds are a good thing -- take 'em. Do what you need to do to make your life easier -- get a shower bench and plastic cast protector for showering, a little fanny pack attached to a crutch for toting stuff around, a beanbag chair (got that idea on this board and it was wonderful) for keeping that foot up. Take the help that people offer. Soon enough you'll be able to go back to offering help to others and that sort of keeps the whole "help" thing running.
Good luck and don't hesitate to ask if there's anything else I can help you with. See? I'm back to being a helper (although still a help-ee) -- Nancy





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