Recovering from Surgery
We know that no one looks forward to surgery, but there are times—when
conservative methods do not produce desired results—where it is
the best option to relieve painful symptoms, restore functionality, and
allow you to do the activities you enjoy doing.
Houston Foot Specialists is committed to providing first-class podiatric
services (including lower limb surgical procedures) for all of our patients.
Let’s take a look at what is entailed with recovering from foot
or ankle surgery.
Foot and Ankle Surgeries
There are many different types of surgical procedures that need to be performed
at various times for patients, but some of the most common include:
Bunionectomy – These procedures are used to correct a bunion. Bunions are progressive
conditions, which means they do not improve on their own. We can use nonsurgical
methods to relive symptoms and relieve discomfort, but only surgery will
completely address the condition.
Hammertoes – This also extends to claw and mallet toes, but these conditions are progressive,
like bunions. These toe deformities often develop due to muscular imbalance
and outpatient surgery may be needed to correct that imbalance.
Arthritis – There are several different ways that arthritis can affect feet and ankles,
but pain, discomfort, and impaired mobility are symptoms that need to
be addressed. Fusion and joint replacements are common procedures used
to provide relief and improve lower limb movement.
Postoperative instructions provide guidelines for medication use, bandage
maintenance, and activity restrictions and/or modifications. When recovering
from foot or ankle surgery, it is crucial that you follow these instructions.
Doing so will allow your body to recover appropriately and in the shortest
possible amount of time. This includes using crutches or other equipment
as instructed to keep weight off of the affected area.
When patients have problems with their recovery from foot or ankle surgery,
we find that is often a result of neglecting or forgetting post-op instructions.
Be sure to keep your instructions handy and reference them often during
the recovery period.
Recovering from Bone Surgery
When the surgical procedure we perform is for a compound fracture in a
foot or ankle, we will ensure that everything is lined up correctly, but
the body will do the main work in mending the fractured tissue. In doing
so, it uses a healing process that follows three overlapping stages:
Inflammation – Bleeding in the area leads to inflammation and clotting, which
establishes the initial framework for creating new bone tissue.
Bone production – Fibrous cartilage and tissue (soft callus) replace the clotted
blood, and soft callus is gradually replaced by early bone development
Bone remodeling – Over the course of several months, bone becomes compact and resumes
its original shape and density.
The entire healing process varies in time, depending on the patient, nature
and severity of the fracture, and other considerations. That said, bones
will typically take between 6-8 weeks for significant healing.
Commonly experienced postoperative symptoms include:
- Pain – As the body begins to heal, this will lessen over time.
- Swelling, bruising, and/or discoloration – Bruises or other discoloration
and swelling following foot surgery is normal.
- Low-grade fevers – These should only happen during the first week
and be less than 100.5 degrees. Fevers after that first week or higher
temperatures should be reported to our office immediately.
- Leakage – There may be either blood or fluid that leaks from the
surgical incisions, especially if swelling is present following the surgery.
Foot and Ankle Surgical Procedures in Houston, TX
It is always our hope that we are able to relieve painful symptoms and
address any foot or ankle issues through the use of conservative treatment
methods. There are going to be times, though, when surgery constitutes
the best option for solving a problem that is affecting you. The good
news is that Houston Foot Specialists has the staff, equipment, and sterile
environment for successful surgical procedures.
Contact our Houston, TX podiatrist office today to find out how we can
help take away foot or ankle pain and allow you to go back to your favorite
activities. Call us at (713) 467-8886 and speak to one of our professional
staff members for additional information, or simply schedule your appointment
with us online.