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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board


Foot & Ankle Problems Board Index


Hello all, I have a pretty extensive history. I am very sad, angry, depressed, right now I don't know what to do. I feel like my life is over.

In aug 2007 I had my first surgery for a bunion. I did not have pain but was recommended by my doctor to have it done now, if I let it go much longer my recovery will be worse. Well my recovery was horrible anyway. I had the lapidus procedure done. After this my big toe was much shorter than my second, I could not bend my big toe very well at all. It did not bend down at all and up only a few degrees. And I felt like I was walking on a rock all the time.

I went forth to seek another opinion. This time by an orthopedic surgeron specializing in feet and ankles. Well she recommended more surgery. So I went ahead and had it done. She lengthened my first metatarsal, shorted my second toe, re-fused the metatarsal at the mid-foot (raising it up so I did not feel like I was walking on a rock), removed one sesamoid bone, and for some unknown reason did a heal osteotomy. Well I was horrible after this surgery, bending the toe was horrible, did not get any better, worse actually. I have developed arthritis in my big toe now, heel hurt like hell, still felt like I was walking on a rock, and my gait was way off.

So I did a LOT of internet searching and found what was called one of the best foot and ankle surgeons in the US. He was world know, traveled all over preforming surgeries and so forth. I went to see him. He again recommened more surgery. He said he really thought he could help me. I truely like this guy, he really seems to know what is going on. So he did surgery on April 17th, 2009. I am currently 8 weeks post op. He re-did the fusion again mid-foot, lifting it up more to remove that walking on rock feeling. He re-did my heel slide, putting it back to where it was. And said he got my toe moving again.

Well I am in a great deal of pain. In the beginning this doctor said about fusing the big toe joint, due to the arthritis. But then he changed his mind.

I still can not bend my big toe down at all, up only a few degrees. Worse than before. my heel hurts like crazy.

I am wondering if I should just let my surgeon go back in and fuse the big toe joint. I am miserable, my quality of life if just about zero. I am only 28 years old and want a normal life just like others my age.

Can somone please tell me what life is like after big toe fusion. I have a wonderful 4 year old daughter and want to be able to take her places and do things with her. I want to be able to take long walks, take her to amusement parks, take my yearly trips to NYC. I want to be able to exercise daily, run/jog, jump. All the normal things people do in life.

And most importantly I want to WALK NORMAL, NO LIMPING.

Is this possible. Can people give me an insist on what my life might be like afterwards. Please tell me how old you were when you got your fusion and what life has been like for you. I would like to hear good or bad.

Thank you so much, I just want my life back. I am only 28 and feel old as hell. Thanks again.
fusion is the last resort. the fusion i had wont let me bend the big toe. it sticks up about 10-15 degrees and is angling inward. like i said before, its a very long recovery. evey fusion is different. i had o have fusion after a failed bunionectomy. nov. will be 3 years. after the fusion i was in a cast for 12 weeks and a walking boot for 4 weeks. i then went slowly into a wide gym shoe. i started on the bike and gradually did everything the dr allowed me to. i think the biggest problem is swelling. ice and elevation are key. as time went on, i was able to wear a compression sock and boy did that help. i gave up on shoes, but at the 1 year mark i found i was able to buy some cute ones. at the 2 year mar even more swelling went down and i am able to get into some of my old shoes. there were some i could not donate! i also had arthritis in the big toe. this fusion was done when i was 50 which i think is very young. i do everything i did before. i play tennis, snow ski and do every exercise possible-even jumping rope. i am a very active person and the only thing i dont like about this is not being able to wear cool shoes. i like dressing nice and wearing cool jeans so i do the best i can with finding shoes. just to let you know i am 5 ft tall and weigh 95lbs. i watch what i eat, but i work out constantly. i never thought there was a light at the end of the tunnel, but there was! when i was able to take the boot off and there was no pain, i knew i did the right thing. you have no choice. 1 last question, why did they work on your heel? i hope this helped you because 50 is the new 30! do it now before anything else happens. go see a pro sports foot and ankle specialist. love, debbie





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