Monday, October 28, 2013

Check Out My Feet 10 Months Post-Op!

It has been nearly a year since I began my journey of fixin' my 'bad feet'. My journey has not been a walk in the park. Nonetheless, it has been an awesome experience improving the function and aesthetics of my feet. I encourage anyone having feet problems to see their podiatrist for a solution. 

I was very insecure about my feet and they were always in constant pain, even when wearing reasonable shoes. My bunions would sometimes hurt so badly that my feet would feel numb. Teetering on heels with pointy toe boxes encouraged the growth of hammertoes and corns. My toes were busted! What a horrible and unnecessary pain to live with. I never wanted to show my feet and lived in constant fear of someone seeing them. My family made jokes about my toes all of the time. I was insecure but more so, I was in pain. 

I found a doctor and began my journey of correcting my feet abnormalities. 

Here is what my toes look like today 10 months post-op. They are not perfect but they function better than before. 

Left Foot update:
This foot underwent a bunion removal, plus hammertoe correction on toes 2, 3 and 5. The bunion healed pretty well and my scarring is in a good location. I rarely feel pain in my left foot bunion area. The corns on the 3rd toe are gone and most of my normal skin color has returned. I'm most impressed with the 3rd toe as its was the worst looking and feeling of them all. However, my little 5th toe (pinky toe) is still taking a beating and the stubborn corn just wont go away and from the look and feel, its gotten a little worse. I wear sensible shoes and rarely wear heels, yet my 5th toe bothers me in every shoe unless it is a sneaker. I will see my doctor soon to talk about the healing on this toe. Here is the before (right after surgery) and after (today) of my left foot:

Here is a pic of my left foot surgery scars. They are well hidden along the sides of my toes:

Right Foot Update
My right foot underwent surgery twice in the bunion area. The first time my foot remained a bit curved and some bone had to be removed to straighten the bunion. This foot always hurt me most. To date, I still experience bunion pain on this foot. I also had hammertoe correction on my 2nd and 3rd toes. My toes are very comfortable and I do not experience any pain there. Here is a shot of my right foot today:

As you can see, the scars of the surgery are well hidden. Though there is still a bit of of a 'curve' to the big toe. That is the area that still causes me pain. 

Here is a side profile shot of the scar:

Overall, I am pleased with my progress. Though I am a little concerned with the regression of progress on my left pinky toe. I'll take my concerns and questions to my doctor. Please share your thoughts, comments and questions regarding my experience correcting my bunions and hammertoes. 

THANKS for viewing! 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Week 7 Right Foot Update-SURGERY AGAIN!!! :(

Ok, here is the update on my right foot:
Well, after my foot infection cleared up (check Week 4 Right Foot Update post) and the swelling subsided, the doctor FINALLY admitted he "under-corrected my bunion." Those were his exact words. My big toe is curved into my 2nd toe, it's moved right underneath it. EVEN WORSE than it was prior to surgery. That pressure is causing my second toe to move into my third toe. There isn't much pain associated with this condition, but there is discomfort. I feel a constant need to try to spread my feet out and take my shoe off because my foot feels awkward.

To remedy this, I am going back into surgery this afternoon. The doctor explained, in layman terms, that he needs to tighten a ligament which is like a rubber band, once he pulls it taught my big toe will be straighter and move off of my toes. He'll then stitch it back and all should be well. I hope it works and that I'm not in a lot of pian. I plan to be out of work this Thursday and Friday, recover the weekend and return on Monday.

My doctor alluded that I was looking for perfection..OH NO HE DIDN'T! Let me be clear, I do not need perfect feet, but I need to rid myself of foot pain AND have symmetry in my feet AND a better appearance. What's the point of surgery if the results are worse than when you started?

So, now that I've vented, I'm ready to get this problem resolved so that I can begin the healing process...all.over.again.

BTW< my hammertoes are looking great. They were removed from the second and third toe.

Check out the pic of my curvy, bent over right foot big toe. Also check out the side by side comparison of my left and right foot together.

(You can compare the progress on my right foot by scrolling back and viewing the Week 1 Right Foot Update post and comparing it to the pics below).


Left foot toes are evenly spaced out. Right foot toes are bunched up and the big toe is still doing a little bit of a gangster lean.

Week 12 Left Foot Update- Improvement in Function AND Appearance!

Wow, it's been 12 weeks since I went under the knife to correct my bunions and hammertoes on my left foot. In that time, my bunion has been corrected and removed. My big toe is nice and straight, but still has some loss of feeling and I'm hoping the nerves repair over time and I get 100% feeling in that toe. My pinky toe hammertoe still has a corn on it, but it's the pinky toe, which gets the most pressure from sneakers and shoes, so I'm not sure if it'll ever be a corn-less toe. My second and third toe hammertoes look 100000% better!!! The corns have become smaller, no hard skin covers them and they are truly going away...thank goodness!
I am comfortably wearing sneakers and flats and a dress boot with a shaft and 1 1/2 in heel (very short) to work. I am not in heels yet, primarily because my right foot has only been recovered for 8 weeks and I do not want to push it by stuffing my feet in heels. I'll wait until summer and then BOOM! POW! I'll be strutting my stuff in 4-5 inch
Overall, I am satisfied with the work done on my left foot and with the healing process thus far. The comfort that I feel in my sneakers is a huge deal, because prior to surgery my bunion nor the hammertoes would allow me to comfortably wear sneakers.

Scroll back and compare my left foot at Week 5 and my left foot today at Week 5, it is a vast improvement in appearance.

Check out this pic of my left foot at 12 week post op and let me know if you have any questions!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Week 4- Bunion Infection Right Foot

This Friday will make 4 weeks post op on my right foot bunion + 2 hammertoes. I have an infection. It's painful and uncomfortable. For the past 2 days my foot was throbbing and I had itchy sensations. My foot was bight red on top on on the underfoot. Finally, some pus and blood cam out of an area that wasn't fully healed when the stitches are removed. I knew I had an infection.
My doc was surprised I got an infection this far into recover. He prescribed me strong antibiotics that make my stomach hurt so badly! After one full day on antibiotics, my foot hurt so badly that I had a take a Vicodin.

Here are the pics. If your wound(s) look like this with the symptoms I had, call your doc immediately:

And finally, hold onto your lunch, these pics are really gross:

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Week 3-Right Foot Update

Today my stitches were removed on my right foot. It is officially week 3 and my foot is itchy as all get out! I soak it 2x per day and the wounds are itchy aka healing. There's a lot of soreness and cramping. I rely on my surgical boot to walk around. Soaking my foot really helps a lot to manage pain and swelling. I take OTC meds when it's unbearable.

My right foot still has a curve and the bunion is not as straight as my left foot :(. My doctor said after the swelling subsides, he can go back in and re-align my big toe. I don't want another surgery but I would appreciate symmetrical feet. Insert huge sigh!!

The moment you've all been waiting for, PICS!!!!

 YES, I painted my toes! No more busted polish. :) 

 Side profile, of my bunion. 
 Up close of hammertoes stitches removed from toes 2 and 3. Lots of toe swelling. 
GREASE ME UP BABY!! Vitamin E oil, Cocoa butter and A & D ointment. All day, err day, many times a day. 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Week 1/2- Right Foot Disappointment

Well, yesterday was 9 days post op on my right foot. I am so disappointed in the physical results of my bunionectomy. The big toe seems to be leaning even more toward my other toes. What the hell happened. I was so shocked to silence when my doctor unwrapped my foot. I was only able to exclaim,  "Why is my toe leaning?!" My doctor said the results are normal and that one foot will not be identical to the other, however my right foot still looks like I have a bunion! he said in time my toe should be fine and that if its not, he can always perform another surgery. WHAT?? Another surgery??? UMMM, sir, you're outta your mind. That's nearly admitting that you jacked my feet up, no?

Its the weirdest thing seeing as my left foot is so straight and perfectly aligned. Immediately after surgery (check two posts back), my right big toe looked pretty straight, now...not so much! Here is a comparison view of right after surgery and today, 9 days later:
He also introduced me to toe separators which are wedges of material that is used to push the big toes off of the other toes. I have to wear the wedge 24/7. I have little faith they will work. I guess I'm just too upset that my painful bunion will be gone but aesthetically my foot still looks wonky. Hopefully when the swelling subsides I'll be happier with the results. I really expected my big toe to be better aligned. I'm totally self-loathing right now.

Pics of leaning big toe, bunion stitches and hammertoe stitches and toe separator:

 Even with a toe separator, it still looks like I have a bunion :(.

Here is a comparison of my left foot and my right foot. Noticeably, the left foot is STILL jutting out just as it was prior to surgery. 

I dare not say this surgery is botched. So, I went to the self proclaimed gurus 's the web and Googled "big toe leaning after bunion surgery". To my surprise this affects many people. I called up one of my friends who recently had the surgery and she also said she was very upset that both of her feet still appeared to have a bunion, even though they had been surgically removed for weeks. The search also yielded that I could wear bunion splints while my bone healed over the next 6 weeks. I will be trying to locate bunion splints this week. I'll try most anything to fix what I see as a flaw of this surgery.

Now, on to pain and pain management. I'm off of the Vicodin, which is great. My bunion areas pains me when I walk too much. I continue to keep my foot elevated. Though my stitches are still in, I am able to soak my feet. I did my first foot soak last night and it relieved some pressure off of my foot. I'll continue to soak 2x per day with epsom salt and hydrogen peroxide.

Week 7/8- Left Foot Update- Toe Wraps and Patience

This Friday makes 8 weeks since I had surgery on my left foot. The bunion is gone and the big toe is straight. The hammertoes are still a bit rigid. The second and third toe are a bit straight out. To combat them staying that way and to promote flexibility, I continue to soak my foot 2x per day and massage them in vitamin E oil while bending them.

The color is returning to most of my foot and the corns on my third and 5th toe are becoming much softer. However, I am still scared they won't go away completely. Today I purchased toe wraps at my local pharmacy. They are like little sleeves for my toes. The package states it'll help treat old corns while preventing new ones. I placed them on my 2nd, 3rd and 5th toes. *Fingers crossed*

My foot still appears a little swollen, however, its far from where it was a few weeks ago, so I'm ok with the progress of the swelling on my left foot. I am still waiting to regain all feeling in my big toe. Patience is a virtue.

I can fit into a sneaker, however, I feel most comfortable in my Ugg boot. The scarring improves week by week. In fact, reviewing the pics on my blog helps me to compare week to week and to feel more confident that improvement has been made. My toes are still dark though and indicate signs of hyper pigmentation. I will keep close watch on this.

Here are pics of my left foot with the toe wraps (slathered in vitamin E oil):