Bunions

Posted , 8 users are following.

Hi I would like some advice.

I have got, and are progressively getting worse bunions. My 2 feet both big toes are severley turning in and my left foot, the second toe is now a hammer toe and the big toe is pushing underneath it. I have very bony bumps on both inside of feet where the toes are turing inwards ( I am in  no pain at all at least).

I have had bunions for many years but only last 6 months alot worse. I cannot wear nice shoes and only wide fitting boring shoes, and also what I could wear last summer, now I cant. I have to push my hammer toe down before I put on my shoes now. I have seen my gp who referrred me to a podiartrist who said yes they are bad and its due to biomechanics of my limbs and very tight calves and hypermobility of all joints. He said an op will not resolve the issue as its down to my tight calves and the way I walk,  but he is to provide insoles which I must wear at all times- these are being made and will take 3 months to be ready. I have thought about this and my left foot has has got worse since I saw him ( 1 month ago). To be honest I am not convinced insoles will really do much. I am seeing my gp again this week for another referral to a private specialist this time and I will ask about an operation as I have been told in the past I will need one within next 5 yrs. I am 41 yrs old BUT I am a fitness fanatic. A lot of my feet issues have been made worse by teaching high impact classes, running, alot of sports training, plyometric work etc over last 15 years. I do not teach anymore however I train at an olympic gym doing alot of Cross fit training and high intensity training. I understand I will be unable to train for a few weeks ( this will kill me more than an operation as I train everyday), but as I have put this off long enough, I now have to accept that I do need an operation and soonber rather than later. Can anyone please tell me how long it takes to weight bear after the op and generally return back to normal activity- running, weights, cardio, lifting etc. I will need both feet doing so would it be better to do both at once or one first then the other? Also what about driving, can you drive at all?

Help!!Any advice welcome as I am desperate now!

Thanks.

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20 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Clare. I had orthotic insoles for 10 years. They slowed but did not stop my bunions getting to the point of extreme pain which meant I needed surgery. I have to continue wearing them even after surgery. I will need different ones though. 

    I have had both feet done now - bunion and two toes shortened. Two separate ops. 5th Jan left foot and 30 March right foot - this year (scarf, akin and weil's osteotomies). I was told to walk on my heel immediately. I managed this with the second op but not the first. I was walking the dogs again at 7weeks after the first op and I think this one will be quicker.  The fact you're young and fit will help you enormously but you have to accept it will be a year to full recovery. I am a keen Irish dancer.  The physio told me I can start back dancing, gently, in December.  I really miss it.

     

    I could drive after the left was done (automatic car) but now the right is done I have to wait until I am able to do an emergency stop. The estimate for this is 6 weeks for me. 

    Try to get both feet done as close together as you can. One sedentary year is bad but two would be dreadful. Good luck and don't put it off! 

     

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    • Posted

      Hi thanks for reply.

      When you say a year to full recovery, does this potentially mean no high impact/running/wieghts/gym etc for a whole year. Or is this mainly the high impact work? I cannot not do anything at all even for 6 weeks- I will still try to hit the gym and lift weights and use the rower?! hope this would be suitable, but no exercise at all would literally kill me- if this would be the case, I would avoid surgery then until I am actually in pain. I am not at all in pain..... yet, So wonder If I should do with the insoles as the other guy told me he would do for me, and the digital gel pads that have been advised  also to get to prevent or help with my hammer toe, and then when I do get pain, then have the surgery? Really not sure what to do! I cant wear nice normal shoes and am very concerned about wearing sandals and people looking at me, as its really noticeable in these shoes- bunison pop out/bulge out of the straps either side of these types of shoes. Some I cannot even wear as my feet wont fit in.

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    • Posted

      High impact should be fine after 3 to 4 months. One year until full mobility. I did weights in gym about 2 months but careful jogging about 3 months. Sounds like you need the op. I also didn't have pain pre op but it is a big decision. Things can go wrong. Im not so happy about numbness.
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  • Posted

    Hi. He information that you have been given from the podiatrist I striding that bunions can be due to the reasons given. At least this is pretty much he same info that I was given.

    I have to wear insoles too.. Not wearing insoles if they are needed can make the likelihood of and severity of bunions worse, I understand.

    I have had both feet done together in October so it is almost 6 months since my op. I was very impressed at how quickly I could get around in the beginning. Wore special footwear to prevent any weigh bearing for the first 6 weeks and then progressed into soft supporti e footwear. I had quite a lot of swelling and my big toes were stiff which made it difficult to get footwear on. This has improved steadily. I can wear a wider. Aridity of footwear now but this is still limited. Tried sandals yesterday that I wore last yeR but found them to be too tight after a few hours. I was told that I should be able to wear 'elegant ' footwear at 6 months but haven't dared try a heel yet.

    Can exercise though in the beginning I was advised that his should not be stuff like the treadmill because of the pressure that goes onto the foreffoot.

    I go back to see the consultant next week follwoing which I have aporia try appointment where we will look at getting new insoles made. I am hoping that they will not be as big as the previous ones.

    If you are ad used by a do for that you need surgery, then I wild advise having both done together as it is one recovery period. Might be a little harder than having one done but quicker recovery time should make up for it. I was advised that patients often find it easier having both do e together as patients. An have some difficulty with back pain from wearing one of the delightful post op shoes!

    Recovery is also quicker from Minimally invasive surgery so you may wish to ask about that.

    Good lu k

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  • Posted

    Hi - I was back to the gym doing classes at about 2 months post op after having both feet done (scarf akin oseotomy), albeit carefully.  I was driving just locally after 6 weeks with an automatic  car.  Full recovery by 12 months, although I have residual numbness of one big toe which I think will remain.  Good luck.  Lise
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    • Posted

      Hi Lise. Did you get full movement back in your toes? Do you remember when? I am 12 weeks and very stiff in big toe. Started physio now. Can cycle again but still limp when I walk so cannot run.
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    • Posted

      Hi. I have numbness of my big toe after scarf/akin as well - on the outer side of the big toe, in front of where the scar ends. Oh well! I also only have 50 degrees of movement in the joint (MTP) where my other big toe has 90 degrees. This is due to pre-existing osteo-arthritis apparently. Neither of those problems is really a major impediment though. My cycling shoe is rigid-soled in any case!
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    • Posted

      Yes. Full movement back - I can do glissés if you're familiar with ballet and i was sure that full movement wouldn't return. Just keep up the exercises, including small feet exercises, once you're ready of course. And do NOT forget massaging feet as soon as possible after op as this imoactscon scar. Lise
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    • Posted

      Thanks- my concern is can I at least do upperbody exercise within days- not weeks, i cannot even begin to imagine not being able to anything for 6 weeks. I know that running, impact work will be out of question for 6 weeks, but thinking of using the rower, bike etc, and weights for upper body.
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    • Posted

      I am doing lots of massage but cannot get a bend in the big toe. It bends at the base a little but not in the middle. I am not a dancer so not sure I will miss it but suspect it may stop me wearing any shoe with a heel.  The thought of that now is awful anyway though!
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  • Posted

    Hi Clare. I hope I can help you on a couple of points. I am a 44-year old sports and outdoor activities enthusiast who gave up serious running mainly due to foot problems and changed to cycling. Anyway, nearly nine weeks ago I had a scarf osteotomy and akin osteotomy on my right foot due to a bunion which was NOT caused by tight shoes. It was more likely hypermobility. I thoroughly recommend orthotics. I was sceptical about them beforehand but they work like magic and have prevented me from needing this op for at least ten years, I would say. They really are fantastic when made by a GOOD podiatrist. However, if the op needs doing, just get on with it. After a week or so, you WILL be able to exercise with weights and you will be able to do other types of exercise not involving weightbearing on the bad foot/feet. You will need to spend a lot of time in between exercising elevating your foot/feet and you will need to forget running for a while! I have just tentatively started running again (once around a football pitch in stages yesterday) but I am able to cycle well, managing a couple of 25% gradient hills yesterday no problem. I am no longer partial to gyms but I think the cross-training and "elliptical" machines there would be fine and the treadmill would probably be bearable for a few hundred metres. I had just one foot done and I think it would be very hard to have both done at once but I don't speak from experience. After six weeks, I had the big bandage and heel-weightbearing shoe taken away and was able to drive again. I hope this helps with your decisions!
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    • Posted

      Hi Nic

      This is very appreciated. I do need an op but if the insoles the podiatrist can make and at least will buy me another few years then this would be ideal. My left foot is worse- big toe now going under 2nd toe and this now is a hammer toe ( 2nd toe) and its lifting up even over lapping the 3rd toe. Long distance running is not an issue- I do short intervals these days, however I go to a cross fit gym and its intense olympic lifting combined with rowing, interval sprints, plyo work etc. I could not think that I could or would not be able to train for weeks. I know that I wont be able to do the workouts for maybe 6 weeks but hope I could still lift upper body and use the rower and bike and non impact. I am or was should

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    • Posted

      Sorry for some reason this sent accidently.

      I am or was should I say a bit skeptical about insoles as I will still have the bunion and still wont be able to wear " normal " shoes. But if this could help in the meantime well I would rather this than surgery. Would this actually change my foot position and maybe reduce the hammer toe and even the big toe from turning in- would it encourage the big toe to start pointing ahead and not inwards. If it has prevented you for 10 yrs well that does give me a more posative outlook. Although can I still train in them. The specialist said I must wear them at ALL times so how comfy are they for everything?

      Thanks

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    • Posted

      Hi Clare, I am sure upper body workouts would be fine from say a week onwards, maybe a bit less (from 5 days or so?). At first, all you will want to do is get your foot or feet up as high as they will go to relieve the pain! I cycled indoors with the heel shoe after a couple of weeks, building up the time and distance very gradually as I made avoiding setbacks to the healing a priority! It is difficult enough to spend time not able to play sport properly without adding to that time by being careless or over-enthusiastic. I, with hindsight, am glad that I had to wear a huge bandage and a heel shoe for six weeks as now my scar is really looking good from all the pampering and I am able to get fit again with a healthy foot. Perhaps it helped that the day before the op I started with a cold so I did not want to play sport that much for a while! I suppose rowing would be OK with a heel shoe. You'll just have to play it by ear. If your foot hurts post-op, stop, as there will be a reason it hurts and ignoring it will damage your foot!

      I reckon that orthotics will straightaway improve your comfort and efficiency but I think they will delay or halt progression of foot deformities rather than reversing them. I suppose it is best to do what you are doing, i.e. gather as much information as possible before deciding. Surgeons and podiatrists tend to give good advice. Good luck!

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    • Posted

      By the way, my orthotics were so comfortable I was happy to wear them all the time. It was more comfortable to wear them than not to. Certain shoes would not take them. Of course, my foot is a different shape now so I need new orthotics!
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    • Posted

      Thanks- I think I will email the podiatrist as he said the insoles he will make for me  ( he did this to my foot shape in sandy type mold when I saw him in March) will be 3 months and to call back then to make another appointment. However I am convinced my hammer toe and big toe on left foot has got worse since March- the big toe is pushing more inwards, causing 2nd toe to lift up and create more of a hammer  and lift over the 3rd toe now. I think it will be a little too late if you see what I mean and by the time these orthotics are ready, it will be too late and more damage done. So I do wonder if it best an op asap and then the insoles to prevent it doing again? 3 months is a long time to wait as he did say on a scale of 1-10- 1 being perfect and 10 horrendous, I am at a 7!
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    • Posted

      Yes, what you are saying makes sense. If you have been referred to an orthopaedic surgeon, ask him (or her) as they will have a realistic idea of what to expect from the surgery. I wouldn't worry too much about recovery time from surgery as, relative to the rest of your life, it is very short. Also, recovery time is less the younger you are. I think also that once your toes are in the wrong position other problems such as corns begin to develop. Also, I would say that once a bunion reaches a certain angle its deterioration accelerates. Anyway, ask your surgeon and podiatrist!
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    • Posted

      Thanks. I will get a second opinion from a surgeon and am willing to go private as if referred by NHS could take weeks and them feet will no doubt be worse. I will let you know the outcome!
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