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need advice re/botched foot surgery

Hi all. I need some advice desperately. It would be nice if there were some foot surgeons or podiatrists onboard, but I would appreciate any input. I had a bunionectomy in October. My toes had been leaning to the left because of the bunion and the second toe had some numbness to it. I mentioned this to the podiatrist that did the surgery and he said he could take a little fatty tissue out under the toe to make it drop back down some and hopefully that would help the numbness. Well, as of now, my foot is still somewhat swollen (which may be normal, I'm not sure) but mostly, the 2nd toe acts as if the tendon were cut. It is not connected as far as functioning is concerned. This was not the case before surgery. When he said "drop back down" he meant drop down to the level of my other toes, which that toe was never out of line with my others, so go figure. In any event, now the toe is below my other toes; it just sort of hangs there. I had to buy size 9 (I wear 7-1/2 to 8 size) converse shoes so that the width will not hurt too much and so I can get my hand in there to hold the 2nd toe so it won't just bend under or backwards since I have no control over it. O.K. This is the thing--I have scoliosis, with chronic pain. Meds only help me to have a somewhat normal life (although I can't work) and NOW because my gait is abnormal (I limp) the pain in my back and hip is much much worse. Should I go to someone else? Will they even treat a botched job by another doc? Will insurance cover a fixer upper? Should I go to an orthopedic surgeon, podiatrist or what? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. This was all I needed; to be made worse instead of better. Please, ya'll give some feedback on this. Thanks so much.


  • I would look for an orthopedic surgeon that specializes in the ankle and foot. They should be able to evaluate your situation and hopefully fix it.

    I can't tell you about insurance issues. You can call the number on your insurance card and discuss it with them. I would think they would pay to correct something that is throwing off the alignment of your spine.
  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
    I don't know about the insurance either but I'm sure it'll probably pay. I agree with gwennie that I would find an orthopedic surgeon and see what they say. I've had a couple of foot surgeries also and I really feel for you. It can be a painful, slow recovery. I hope you can find someone to help make it better.

    Take care,
  • I'd get a second opinion on your foot, from an orthopedic surgeon. I had bunionectomy on both feet (4 months apart)in 2007 and my ortho said it would take up to a year for my feet to heal. He was right! It took nearly that long for all the swelling to go down. I also had hammertoe repair on the second toe but the problem you had with that toe doesn't sound familiar to me.

    Good luck finding out what's going on with that toe. :)

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • thanks, inchworm, for your reply. It really helps to know that the swelling and pain is probably somewhat normal since it has only been 3 months. The doc had written down that he was doing hammertoe repair on my second toe, but I did not have what I have always thought of as hammertoe. I just figured he was stating it that way for insurance purposes. In any event, whatever he did, it did not come out right. The big toe is now turned sideways, not leaning to the left (although it is some) but turned so that more of the side of my toe is toward the ground and the second toe as I said is just sort of there, stiff and dead, and when I step down and put weight on it, it curls to the left. Looks like the general consensus is for a visit to an orthpedic surgeon. Thanks again for the advice.
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    Swelling after bunionectomy is very very normal. I always tell people it's an easy surgery (in and out in a few hours) but the months after that are full of swelling and pain. I've had both done, a few years apart. See if you can find a good foot and ankle orthopedic surgeon and/or a highly regarded podiatric surgeon.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
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