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I had Hammertoe surgery 4 weeks ago on both feet, 6 toes in total and I thought I would share my experience as I had so many questions and needed more information and "googled" obsessively to find out more - so here is my experience.
I arrived at the hospital and was quickly shown to my bed then found out to my complete surprise that the operation was to be undertaken using an Epidural - I had been under the impression it would general anesthetic but no....
So the Epidural was uncomfortable but not painful and I was given something which completely chilled me out - I mean in a big way!
I had the surgery was awake the whole time, could hear what was going on but I was that relaxed it didn't matter.
Once the hospital were happy I had normal feeling they said I could go home - another suprise given I had been under the impression that I would be in over night....... it took about 8 hours for the feeling to return.
Now the walking on the feet hurt, seriously not good but the physio was sure that I wouldn't need any walking aids - however I would strongly suggest you get a walking stick or better still crutches for use when you get home.
Days 2-5 - I literally lied in bed all the time only moved to go to the toilet and never came downstairs.
Day 6 - I felt comfortable enough to spend some time in the lounge with the family
Day 7 Onwards - I was pottering around however please be mindful that if you over do it your feet will hurt and elevation is the only cure along with a few paracetmols and Ibruprofen.
Then I improved - we loaned a wheelchair from British Red Cross for a small donation (I gave them £20 for the month)..... I could at least go for a spin around the estate and managed to go out to the pub for lunch occasionally.
I have a seat in my shower so that I can independantly take a shower - I just cover my feet in carrier bags and make sure they are sticking out away from the water.
Cover up your toes if it is winter - something like the ends from a pair of welly socks keeps them warm and also stops people looking at your pins :-) My friend made me some little toe hats which look like babies hats for the ends of my feet and my velcro shoes held them in place.
Week 2 - stiches removed, now this did not hurt but for two days following my toes were sore.... extra laying down required.
After 3 weeks - with the aid of my crutches I managed to take my little girl to school.
Week 4 - Pins removal..... Absolutely does not hurt - it is a wierd kinda sliding feeling all in all less than 10 minutes to undress my feet then remove the pins and clean my toes.... I was nervous but it was really a doddle.... Today is the day after the pins came out and I am a little tender and my feet are freezing so they are now wrapped in some big fluffy socks.
Epsom Salts ordered ready for Thursday so I can have a long soak in the bath (48 hours post pin removal)
Friday I aim to try driving shoes permitting and also going for a little swim!
My feet are too swolen for normal shoes at the moment so I have tried walking bare foot and I can although it feels odd after walking on my heels for 4 weeks.
I have invested in a pair of new balance trainers which are half a size too big ready for some serious walking.
Manage your pain - don't let it get on top of you in the early days
Cover your toes with little "hats" they will get cold if the weather is cold
Have some walking aids at home - they will help in the early days
Consider hiring a wheelchair if you want to go out - 4 weeks in the house is a long time.......
Wear the shoes the hospital gives you - they will aid recovery and ensure you don't damage any healing...
Prepare for a long drawn out wait..... consider working from home if you can (I had one day off for this entire process)
Feet up as much as you can
Comfy clothing is a must!
In conclusion - it was sooooo worth it my feet look fabulous albiet swollen at the moment and I am looking forward to walking in shoes pain free! :-)
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