Bunion and second toe release - 6 weeks on

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This is for anyone either contemplating or had any type of bunion surgery.

I am now post op 6 weeks and back in my shoes after my follow up today.

Yes it's still a bit swollen and sore but I have been able to weight bear from day one so have been

lucky.

My experience has been mostly very positive and yes the last 6 weeks have seemed slow at times, but hang in there and I hope anyone reading this has the same positive experience I have had.

Happy to answer any questions!

Back to work for me next week! smile

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7 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Bronwen, How did it feel to have a shoe on the bunion side for the first time? Are you able to wear heels yet? 

    Would you advise having both feet done if one could stay in hospital for 3 weeks? I live alone and wondering if I could manage it, as I've read that other ladies on this site have had success with both feet being done. I'm 75 so I'm scared, and if I can't walk or get around at home I would be better off just doint one foot, but the surgeon is from a public hospital and he may not be there for the second foot, (he's the best there), as a lot of the doctors are leaving public hospitals due to the Government wanting to sent down rules and laws to own them, doctors are forced to be under government control now. So, do I get one or do I get two done? The problem is, I had to wait 2yrs to get this one done (when that is of course, I go on the 23rd May to see the doctor) and it may take another 2yrs to get the other foot done!....so any advice would be most welcomed.

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    • Posted

      HI Carol, hope you don't mind if I make a contribution to this discussion. I am 57 and had both feet done on Tuesday, 6th May.  When I saw the surgeon initially she wanted to do one foot at a time but I am a very active person with a lot of commitments, also it had taken me many years to finally decide to have my feet operated on, despite many health care professionals warning me against surgery.  I  didn't want to take twice the amount of time to recover from two ops rather than one op  and I just knew I would not be able to go though the experience twice.  

      In deciding whether or not two would be right for you and noting that you live on your own, without wishing to be personal I think it would be most 'do-able' if you are relatively active, i.e. mobile and if you will be on the ground floor when at home.  You mention that you could stay in hospital for three weeks.  This would take you over the initial period, when it is most crucial for you to keep your feet elevated.  Do you mind if I ask where you live to be able to stay in hospital for three weeks?  I was discharged the same day, something to do with 'the bed manager'.

      I would suggest doing as many preparations as possible prior to discharge, i.e. getting all the things you will need in the room you will be convalescing in at home.  

      If you have got a good surgeon and they are willing to do both feet together, I would go for it personally.  However, it does depend on the individual, of course.  Some people probably feel happier taking one foot at a time.  Hope this is of some help.

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    • Posted

      Hi Sally, I am most grateful for your input. I've been thinking about the two feet saga and I'm going to have it if the doctor thinks I'll cope. I live in Australia, and if you live alone you can stay in hospital to be cared for, my friend was in for 3 weeks too after she had her 'heels' replaced, (car accident). Sally, what was the inital reaction to the op you had, were you in pain or what sort of sensations did you occur? How do you manage to do personal things, like toilet and bath? I know I can arrange the Blue Nurses to come and shower me each day, but I'd like to be more independent if I can. Yes, I am very active, I too have commitments to uphold, and have volunteered my services to the Police as a Justice of the Peace so I want to uphold my commitment to them. It's my only outing. I have mentally prepared the 'things' I'll need before hospital, and I'm going to cook meals and have them in the freezer so I don't have to worry and I'm sure some of my friends will pop in to do what they can for me. Being on my own proved to be difficult when I broke my foot, it was so excruciating painful and I had to have crutches and a Moon Boot, I use to leave my office chair (on wheels) at my bedroom door, grab the crutch, swing onto the chair and go to the bathroom, and struggle into the toilet, it was an effort I can tell you, so I'm wondering how you do it with two feet out of action!....Thank you again Sally, love to hear of your progress as the weeks go on and how you feel when you first put a shoe on!
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    • Posted

      HI, Carol, it was nice to hear from you and learn a bit about you. Justice of the Peace: that sounds fascinating. I will tell you my experience. I live in England and wanted to have something done about my bunions for many years.  Even after the decision to go ahead I was still very worried about causing so much trauma to my feet so I didn't look into the surgical side of things as I knew this would put me off. This meant I didn't go into the operations very well informed.  However, I was expecting the process to be very painful from what I had heard and I was determined to keep my feet elevated as having broken my ankle several years previously I realised how important this would be to keep the swelling down.  I had the ops and  when I came round found myself facing two feet wrapped in bandages and encased in special 'Darco' boots.  My feet felt quite uncomfortable, but not very painful apart from one brief shooting pain to my right foot.  I never take painkillers but had decided to follow advice I had been given to keep on top of the pain by taking Paracetemol regularly rather than letting the pain get a hold.  I took the Paracetomol the nurse offered.

      There had been mention of a physiotherapist but the nurse said she had some crutches for me and once she had seen that I could walk to the toilet I  could go home.  I must say I felt very wobbly clomping over to the loo, it was a bit awkward to say the least, whereupon the nurse said she would take me out to the car in a wheelchair.

      Once home, to my prepared room, i.e. bed, four memory foam pillows,(obtained at a special price), fleece blankets, radio, t.v., tablet, books, paperwork to be done, etc., I immediately laid down and elevated my feet. Apart from getting up to wash,  brush my teeth and go to the loo I have laid on this bed since I came out of hospital, nearly five days ago, with my feet elevated. This is so unlike me but as I said from the start, I was determined to keep my feet elevated.  I noticed from the outset how, when I got out of bed, all the blood rushed to my feet and they instantly became more uncomfortable.

      Although I was determined to take painkillers, when I woke up yesterday morning my feet felt quite comfortable, i.e. there didn't seem to be any pain or even discomfort!  It wasn't until midday that I suddenly remembered that I hadn't taken any painkillers. I wondered if I should take any, then got distracted (I think, keeping my mind occupied has helped) and I haven't taken painkillers since.  I can only think that keeping my feet elevated has been the key, although that's not to say they might not become uncomftable again.

      You ask about bathing. I must be honest and say I cannot contemplate taking a shower or bath at the moment, I'm making do with what my mother used to call 'a good wash', e.g. when I was at girl guide camp.  I just think it's too risky at the moment.  I wouldn't be able to keep my feet elevated and I do not want to get them wet or even damp.

      I think it is terrific that you can be in hospital for three weeks as at three weeks, when you go home, you will be over the worst period.  I am not out of the first week yet but it seems, from other people's experiences, that the first two weeks are the worst.   You will be well on the road to recovery by the time you are discharged.  Also, you have the option of the Blue Nurses should you need them. I know what you mean about wishing to be independent I am the same, but it's nice to know they are available.

      I knew in making the decision to have the ops that I would have to 'rough it' a bit but my focus has been to do everything I can to optimise a good result.  I really do sympathise with the young mothers on this website who have young children and cannot elevate their feet sufficiently post op.

      I hope I haven't bored you with all this.  I think the main considerations for successful bunion surgery are, of course, firstly a good, experienced surgeon, and then elevation.

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    • Posted

      Hi Sally, thank you for all of your information I feel much better now, one thing I'd like to know is, how are you going for meals? Do you have anyone to provide them for you?

      Yes, I think I'll do both feet and stay in hospital to be looked after.

      Many thanks for all your input and I'd love to hear how you are going as the weeks progress.

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    • Posted

      Hi Carol, having two done together suited me and my personality, but I wouldn't like to think that I am influencing you if you might feel happier dealing with one at a time.  However,  you do seem to have other things to consider, i.e. having waited two years to get this far, will the same surgeon be there for you if you have a similar wait for the second one.  Also, it is extremely restrictive having to keep the feet elevated, I can understand people becoming restless and tempted to do too much.

      I am sure that what I am now about to say will cause you to think 'here she is encouraging me to have both done together and she doesn't even live alone'.  I did start to explain the situation in my last e-mail but deleted it as I couldn't word it right.  I do live with my husband! but he is not fully active.  I know it may horrify people but I have always been the organiser.  He has never cooked anything.  The family say he has been spoilt.  Anyway, that's how it is! 

      Our children live locally and they have popped over and kindly prepared (us) something for two evenings so far.  I had asked them not to trouble. I knew I would only want to eat lightly and we would manage.  I had baking potatoes, tins of organic baked beans and mounds of grated cheese prepared.  I am not vegetarian now but haven't felt like eating much meat.  For three nights, yes three nights, my husband has put this meal together.  If I were living alone, I think I would have put a small fridge in the room and perhaps even a microwave, for the potatoes. It's not ideal but it won't be for ever of course.

      I do eat a lot of nuts and fresh and dried fruit, which I have put in the room. I also eat pro-biotic yoghurt ever day.  I have resumed taking cold liver oil, which I was told by the hospital pharmacist pre op to stop taking for a few days, plus a vitamin and mineral tablet every day.  People joked that I was going to starve but it's working out fine under the circumstances. I hope this helps but if there is anything else you would like to ask, please feel free to do so. For me, the first day post op was the worst and each day since has got a little easier.  I just hope it continues.  I saw a good tip from another contributor and that was to have chairs around the house, even in the bathroom, to hold onto and sit down.

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