Severe Bunions and Hammer Toes Questions

Posted , 14 users are following.

Hi,

New to this, so I am 23 and as long as I can remember I had severe bunions and hammer toes which have caused me pain. My big toes on both feet are at an angle where they touch my third toe and the second toe (hammer) looks as if it is floating in air smile. When I was younger I was advised that I would need surgery over 10 years now and at that time it was suggested that as I was still growing the success of the surgery may be in doubt. So I had regular visits to get orthoics for many years.

So earlier this year went to the gp got referred to University College London hospital (UCLH). I got an appointment initial in April however they have decided to cancel that and give one in May now sad and even after I have phoned to express the need to be seen earlier due to the pain I am having day to day nothing can be done.

I wanted to ask if anyone had there treatment at UCLH and if it would be a good idea to have both feet done at once.

Also how long did the whole process take from the time of the first consultation to the procedure.

I would greatly appreciate any advice.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

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  • Posted

    I'm in Sussex and from first visiting my GP in early November it was about 5 weeks till I saw the Muscular Sheleto guy who assessed me as needing surgery. I did have an appointment for surgery for 19th Feb that was cancelled but rescheduled. I had surgery to both feet on 28th Feb.

    For me it was a no brainer- if I'd had one foot done I would still have had pain in the other and still had difficulty walking. Also I can ill afford time off work so for me the incentives to get it all over with in one go were financial too. I would have been almost as incapacitated if I'd had just one foot operated on and for the same amount of time. I don't have any real support at home other than someone to stay for the first 3 days then friends dropping by but have managed just fine- I'm no hero nor superwoman I assure you. The only thing I have struggled with is finding enough willing volunteers to walk my 2 American Bull dogs lol. Everything else I have managed by myself.

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  • Posted

    K000, I'm in the US so I can't be much help regarding the hospital, but I had surgery on Feb 15 on both feet. I just couldn't face the long recovery twice! I'm so glad I had both of them done at the same time. I think it's been easier for me than for others since I'm retired and don't have a job to go to every day. Also, my husband is retired and was able to help me. I'm 7 weeks post op and am getting more mobile every day. I drove for the first time yesterday. My feet are still swollen and I can't get my regular shoes on. I've had to order a larger size because my feet won't bend much yet. I'm so glad I had the operation and I hope yours goes well. The most frustrating part is waiting for the surgery and then the long recuperation after you do!
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    • Posted

      Hello, I am in New York and retiree, considering doing one or both feet next spring ? If you are from New York, could you give me your surgeon's name please. Also general advice if possible. Thanks so much. Maudd
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    • Posted

      Hey maudd..am new to this. I was searching for a blog to hear how long before you can actually walk after getting both feet done. I have my surgery in new York with doctor Bar-David. Hes just amazing am 4 days now I have no pain at all.i recommend this doctor his the best!!
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  • Posted

    I think the nhs says you have to be done within 18 weeks of 1st seeing the hospital but some have been even quicker. I was about 12 weeks. Only had 1 foot done 4 weeks ago and not very painful though perhaps not as serious as you. You do need someone around for the first 4-5 days and be very organised before hand. Bed by loo, chairs in between to hang on to, Drinks, books, food and laptop all laid out worked for me. Good luck
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  • Posted

    Hi I wil send you a link to my blog from my surgery last year. I had both feet/4 toes done at the same time. It's harder apparently but only one op, one anaesthetic and one recovery period off work.

    You will certainly find my preparing for surgery / things I couldn't live without post handy!

    I had 10 weeks off work. I could have gone back slightly sooner but I had plenty of sick leave so decided to really do it well and look after myself.

    No casts, bandages and orthotic sandals.

    Now - it's the best decision I ever made!

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  • Posted

    Hi

    I'm surprised your appointment has been put back, but I guess it relates to your local health authority.

    I had both feet done 20 days ago and you do need to be prepared and have help for at least the first 4 days as you learn to manage the pain / discomfort, learn to use crutches and mange the bathroom, getting washed and so on.

    If you live alone you also have to think about what you'll be eating, microwave meals and so on.

    I am now able to stand unaided and hobble although using a crutch is more secure.I am lucky as my husband has managed our home, walked the dog and cooked and whilst I can't travel into work I can work from home I would definitely recommend having both done at once and as beau diddly says it's just one general anaesthetic, one block of sick leave and one period of time of taking strong painkillers.

    Good luck

    S,

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  • Posted

    Hi I endorse all of the above. I had both feet done this is day 32. I can walk indoors without crutches but prefer them outside for safety. I wouldn't want to lose the time with two recoveries. Sounds like to have that much damage you may have hyper mobile feet? If so make sure you find out the likelihood of things recurring since your still young. I'm not London based and I know lists are long there. For me it took about three months from muscular skeletal triage to surgery. Find out about choose and book you may be able to elect to go elsewhere?

    Good luck 👣👣

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  • Posted

    Hi K. Endorse all that everyone else has said. Only had one foot done, bunion, 2 hammer toes and neuroma. 7 weeks in today and don't regret it a bit. If I had to have both feet done I would opt for same time.

    I'm in Derbyshire and waited 12 weeks but I had to cancel as my Dad died. They rescheduled for another 12 weeks and stuck to the date. Treatment here is pretty quick as we are quite rural. London would be very much busier especially at UCLH. Had mine done at a little Cottage Hospital with 1 operating theatre. Surgeon rang me for following day to see if I was OK. Can't get better than that!!

    Lots of info on other forums too. Good luck.

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  • Posted

    Hello K000. I won't write all my details here, but I've been contributing to this discussion site for a long time - I guess since around mid january2014. If you want to scroll back through my contributions you may find it useful/helpful. I live in West Yorkshire and had my surgery at Bradford Royal Infirmary on the NHS. I cannot fault anything from my initial consultation with my surgeon in September 2013 right through to the surgery, aftercare/outpatient appointments and my final visit to see the consultant on 31 March. We are all different but one thing we are all entitled to is thorough care and compassion. I feel I've been very lucky as so many people have horrifying tales to tell. If you're finding UCHL are not being very helpful I suggest you tell your GP and also make it in your way to write to the hospital trust and jolly well present your case and views to them. Or, choose another hospital.

    It's exactly 18 weeks to the day since my bunion and hammertoe surgery and I feel so pleased with how everything's gone and healed. Don't get despondent.

    Keep me posted.

    G

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  • Posted

    Gillian

    As you are now 18 weeks post op can you tell me now much movement you have and when you started to feel normal. That is presuming you are not still suffering.

    When does the swelling and stiffness disappear?

    Jan

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  • Posted

    .Good morning Jan. Right! I have pretty much all of the use back in my foot. I have had for several days some quite strong discomfort in the sole in the area directly beneath the ball of the bunion toe. But today 3rd April it is practically gone. I saw my consultant on 31 March and he informed me that he thought my recovery was better than average. I mentioned the discomfort under the toe and he explained that it was probably the 2 Sesamoid bones which when the bunion develops get misplaced from the bones making the bunion. During surgery the bunion toe is realigned which can mean interference with the Sesamoid bones. They should lay in harmony but sometimes this fails to happen. He told me if the pain/discomfort persists it's an option to remove one or both Sesamoid bones.I can, hand on heart, today tell you that this discomfort is vastly improved. Maybe it was something the consultant said!! My bunion toe is still a bit stiff but yesterday morning I ran up the stairs and it wasn't until I was almost at the top step that I realised that this was something I hadn't been able to do since before my surgery. Some days all my toes feel a bit stiff ( and the hammertoe will always now be stiff due to the bone fusion of the surgery) but I'm pretty much back to normal. I try to focus my walking on getting the bend properly rather than how fast I can walk and this seems to be a useful tip. I'm very conscious not to over use the foot and still elevate when I sit down for lunch or in the evening. I needn't do this but I just want to help things as best I can. My consultant told me that in his opinion my recovery was better than average and even expressed surprise that the shoes I was wearing were some I'd owned for a number of years and not a new pair. You will appreciate that I feel very pleased, and whilst I've written on this discussion in depth about how I've nursed my foot and done all the things I was advised to do, I think I've probably been very wise. I think the stiffness will continue for a while yet but it's not something that I am now constantly aware of compared to this time a week ago. Like anything else, the trauma of this type of operation and the exertion of the foot tends to be overlooked when we haven't had the surgery and it will take time for total healing to be reached.

    I hope I've helped you. Please don't hesitate to ask further questions and I'll help if I am able.

    P.S. And I am definitely not suffering!

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