Scarf + Akin Osteotomy - not a horror story!

Posted , 9 users are following.

In case this is of interest to anybody who's formed the opinion that bunion surgery inevitably leads to great pain and suffering, I had a bunion which was giving me grief, especially in cold weather. GP referred me to consultant, who in view of the fact I'm 66, advised Scarf + Akin with lateral release sooner rather than later.

After an 8-week wait, I turned up at the hospital at 8.30am last Wednesday. I was in theatre at 9.30am, and home with a bandaged foot and crutches just 4 hours later!

The foot was uncomfortable the first night, but perfectly manageable on a diet of paracetamol alternating with ibuprofen - mainly a dull ache from the bones and soreness from the wound area. During the next 48 hours it gave me some grief, mainly very sharp twinges every now and then, but they'd settled down by Saturday afternoon and the swelling had done the same so I ditched the painkillers.

So for what it's worth, the recovery story from here amounts to maybe 72 hours of a foot giving me grief off and on after a total of 5 hours in hospital. I'm now at 7 days post-op, bored out of my mind, but good at moving about the place and getting up and down stairs on my crutches!

I've learned two things that I didn't discover when I was Googling recovery from bunion surgery which may be of use to others. One is that the best way to keep your foot elevated while you're asleep is definitely to put something under the foot of the mattress to raise it (in my case, a rolled-up rug did the trick).

And the other is that if you're a bloke who's of an age to wake up in the night for a pee, sitting on the side of the bed and using a laundry liquid bottle sure as hell beats putting your magic shoe on and hobbling off to the loo. The only downside is that it tends to result in your other half waking up and needing a pee too ...

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18 Replies

  • Posted

    Fine, thanks - but bored out of my mind already and it's only 18 days since the op! Stitches came out last Wednesday at 14 days, wound clean as a whistle and swelling all gone. In fact apart from the scar, all I had to show for for it was some residual bruising mainly in 2nd and 3rd toes, a big toe now pointing in the right direction, and no bunion!

    Bandages come off for good in another 24 days, then it's time to get everything working properly again. Meanwhile, I'm still spending most of my time with my foot in mid-air, and getting mightily fed up of it! But as I keep reminding myself, if that's all I've got to grumble about, the being good from the start seems to have paid off!

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  • Posted

    Good morning

    Thank you for getting back to me it is appreciated.

    You are the only person that wrote good things about the operation, as the stories i read put me off.

    to cut a long story short, i canceled yesterday, as i was afraid the operation would not fully take away pain, and let me still play very actively with my grandchildren, due to the restrictive movement.

    I decided to buy expensive shoes, not fashionable, to help my situation, if i cannot stand the pain next year then i will probably beg for the opp, but for now i am not having it done.

    Here's to you having a quick recovery.

    Take care


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  • Posted

    Well Margaret, I obviously don't know how things would have turned out if I was older and/or more unfit than I am, or if I was fat or had other medical problems, so all I can say is that for me personally, it's boiled down to nothing more than three days of a couple of paracetamols four times a day and an overdose of boredom since then.

    To anyone else contemplating this surgery, I'd say go for it and good luck, but do make sure that you do EXACTLY what you're told afterwards. And make life easier for yourself by getting a grabber/litter-picker so you can reach things whilst sat with one foot in the air, as well as a Limbo to keep your dressings dry in the bath/shower!

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  • Posted

    How are u now? I had same surgery inJune and still have swelling. I go back tomorrow for x ray. How long until you can drive again?at the moment I could not put pressure on the ball of my foot. My big toe is totally stiff, is that the norm? Would appreciate any replies :-)
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  • Posted

    Thank's i have just had my done 5/10/2014 The tip for rasing the foot at night is good . all i can say is i hope i recover as well as you have i am 49. All the best and stay in touch again thank's for the tip .
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  • Posted

    Hi there. I have had bunions since I was born and  they are really painful and feel bruised all the time. How long does it take for the swelling and the pain to start easing off and be able to start walking around and did j have them on both feet like I do. Please get back to me a.s.a.p.
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    • Posted

      Hi. I have had bunions since I was a teenager. I had them on both feet and were very painful. My surgeon would not do both at the same time. I had one operated on in October 2014. The surgery went really well. I was not allowed out of bed until 4 hours after surgery. I went home the same day with strong painkillers, and not knowing how bad the pain could get.... I have to say I had no pain!!! I just took ibuprofen and kept my foot elevated. I was not allowed on my feet for two weeks post surgery which was really hard but I knew I had to do as I was told for a better recover. I went to see the surgeon two weeks later, he removed my bandage and I was amazed at how well it looked. I could not drive for six weeks. Now after five months my foot is still a little swollen but the physio advised that it can take upto a year for the swelling to go. I am still mainly wearing trainers. I am now waiting to see how soon my surgeon will do my other foot. I am really happy with the results and wish I had had the surgery sooner.
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  • Posted

    Just read your post after googling this procedure.  I have been told if I don't have this done, my foot will become so bad that it will be inoperable!  I've read so may horror stories of this and what you say is very encouraging, so thank you for posting your comments.  Hope you read this after so long as I'd love to know how you are now doing.  Are you walking ok and pain free.  Is there anyone else out there who can also give some encouraging feedback?
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    • Posted


      it all depends on the surgery you've going to have. i was in the same positon as you, both done within 2 years or else. I had lapidus, atkins & hammertoe release on both feet 11 months ago.

      If you have keyhole surgery, then recovery is faster than the traditional type.

      fine out what surgery you're going to have, post on here and you'll get comments and help from everyone.

      Is it worth getting it done - yes, but you won't think so until months afterwards


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  • Posted

    Hello, I'm 17 and have just had a scarf and akin osteotomy on Thursday 23rd.

    For about 20 hours after the surgery my foot was completely numb, and felt really strange, however this soon wore off and on Friday I was in agony - 9/10 for pain. However, since then the pain has been more of a 2/10 and is much better.

    I was just wondering though, should I be wearing the post-partum shoe and how tight should I have it?

    Also, my foot keeps having twitches and feels very gross... Is this normal?

    Thankyou ?

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    • Posted


      I'm 4 weeks post op now.... 1st MTP Fusion + 2/3 weils

      osteotomy + 2nd toe correction.

      In 2014 I had a double bunionecotomy.... This recent surgery

      is a revised op as first one was bodged.

      The feelings you are having in your foot are quite normal.

      Lots of tingling and twinges sometimes my foot would start

      'flicking' and taking on a mind of it's own. All part of recovery.

      keep up with any medicine that you have been given....

      Paracetamol.....Codine.....and I took ibuprofen....although

      some say it can hinder bone healing... I stopped all meds after

      7 days but the discomfort....which is how I discribe it....

      returned so I took Paracetamol for another 7 days.

      Keep your foot elevated as much as possible.... I also put an

      ice pack on my foot.... had a piece of tubi grip on so not a bare


      If possible gently rotate your ankle so that it doesn't get to stiff

      More importantly rest up.

      My surgeon told me to only wear my shoe when walking....

      which for the first two weeks was essential walking only,

      basically bathroom and back.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your advice! I've been quite enjoying my time away from school... :'wink

      I don't have any pain now whilst resting, just the odd ouch while moving, so very good!

      Yes, I only walk to go to the bathroom, I have lots of slaves around the house :'wink

      Hopefully you recover well!

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