Wednesday 15 February 2023

Feb 2023 | Post- Op Recovery: Short Despatch No. 6 - A Slight Hiccup. (And a Tetanus Shot!*)

Wed, February 1st, 2023

So, here I am again. I thought my last post might have been the last one to cover the recuperation of my feet after the bunion surgery that I had back in mid-September, but it would seem that I have one more hurdle to jump. If I could jump, that is. 

I've been limping along for the last two weeks or so. Cant fully bend the toes of my left foot. Every step of my left foot hurts. 

I'm gonna try and keep this one short. We'll see.

Mon, Jan 9th - I was helping the watchmaker move his old work-bench and one of the bench's feet landed a little hard on top of my left foot. It hurt a little for a couple of hours, but faded after that. 

Tue, Jan 17th - One week later. My left foot had been feeling pretty good recently. It seemed like its post-op recovery was lagging a little compared to my right foot - which can bear my full weight - but it was feeling stronger in recent weeks. 
So, I woke up a little early one morning and tried a few push-ups. Did 12 of them, as a light test, to see how my left foot held up. 
No problem. Twelve push-ups were a walk in the park. 
Until late in the afternoon. I began to feel a tightness along the toes of my left foot and it began to hurt a little as I lifted the foot with each step. When I knocked off for the day, I slowly made my way to the train station, limping along.
Okay, this ain’t good, I thought to myself as I began to walk slower, being outpaced by men in their 60s and 70s. 
I got off at my station and took ten minutes to take the five minute walk to my car. Yeah, you read that right. Took me twice as long to get to my car. This was not good. 

I made a doctors appointment. I already had one scheduled for the following week. Wanted to get my 2nd booster shot for Covid and I was also due for a tetanus shot. However, this foot was giving me some noticeable pain AND concern so I tee’d up a consult with a different doctor. She had a look at the foot and gave me a referral for X-rays. 
Fri, January 20th -  Had the appointment with the doctor. Not the usual physician that I see, but this doctor was very helpful nonetheless. My foot was looking quite puffy near the toes. She wrote me out a referral for x-rays.
Sat, January 21st - Next morning, I headed out to the Radiology clinic and had my feet x-rayed. Meanwhile, I continued to limp along.  My foot would be quite swollen by end-of-day. Every step I took would hurt. 

Diary entry, Tuesday January 24th; 

Got a bit done today. 
Foot is killing me. 
Wed, January 25th - Doctors appointment that I had scheduled  before this new drama with my foot. He read the x-ray report. No sign of fracture. 
My Doc suggested that I put Voltaren on the swollen foot for a week or two. Voltaren is an anti-inflammatory gel used for arthritic pain. 
I asked about getting a second Covid booster shot, but he told me that, since I'd had a bout of Covid about a month or so earlier, I was immune for another six or eight weeks. 

*Got my tetanus shot, though. Why the asterisk in the title of this post? Well, back in 2011, I wrote this quick post;

Over the years, whenever I thought about when I'd be due for a tetanus booster shot, I would do a Google search for 'teeritz rusty nail' and this post would come up. 
So, I knew when I would be due for my next shot.  
Now, with this post, I'll hopefully know when I need to get a tetanus booster in ten years or so. 
My diary entry that day; Not sure I'm happy with XXXXX's diagnosis. Maybe get a 2nd opinion. 
Tue, January 31st - Had an appointment with a local podiatrist. She was an amiable lady who was quite thorough. She decided to conduct an ultrasound on my foot. I sat up on the examination table while she slid the sensor wand across the top of my left foot over the metatarsal area. 
I was tempted to ask; Is it a boy or a girl?!
About a minute into the procedure, she said; I'm not 100%, but I think there's a fracture visible. 
She tilted the screen towards me, but to be honest, I didn't know what I was looking for.  
As a precautionary measure, to arrive at a definitive answer, she booked me a referral for another set of x-rays, from a different radiology clinic, as well as another ultrasound procedure.
As an added gesture, she gave me the name of the sonographer that she trusts would do an accurate ultrasound and she also added the phrase 'bulk bill' on the x-ray referral paper. That way, I wouldn't have to pay for the procedure, unlike the first round of x-rays that I had done ten days earlier. 

Mon, February 6th - Got the x-rays and ultrasound done at this different clinic. Everyone was very pleasant. 

Tue, February 7th - Podiatrist called me to say that she had gotten the x-ray and ultrasound results and yep, there was a fracture in one of the metatarsals of my left foot. I made an appointment to see her at the end of the day. Sure enough, I had a look at the films on her computer and there was a tiny sliver of bone sticking out very slightly from one of the metatarsal bones of my foot. Podiatrist surmised that perhaps it didn't show up in the first x-rays due to the angle of my foot.
Thankfully, it would just require my wearing a moon-boot for the next 4 weeks or so. This was gonna be a little bit of a hassle, but I was thankful to find out the cause of this pain and swelling. 
This boot is heavy, and it carries the risk of causing hip pain and alignment issues. To counteract this, I got a rubberised sole to go under my other shoe, in order to provide the required height to keep both feet in line with each other.
I also booked a couple of laser therapy sessions over the next week or so, to help speed up the recovery process. 
Photobiomodulation, commonly referred to as Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT), involves near infra-red light which is designed to work at the cellular level. We'll see how that goes.
For me, the jury's still out on how this might have happened to begin with. I'm leaning more towards the push-ups being the cause, since the swelling and pain kicked in about eight hours later. 
I'm a little ticked-off with myself for letting this happen, but how could I have known it would have resulted in this? 
I made the decision to start exercising a little more seriously once this boot comes off. I'll also look into maybe getting a bone density test done, as suggested by the podiatrist. 
Anyway, this was a headache I didn't need, but I'm glad that it's being taken care of and that I exercised a little initiative rather than just accept my doctor's assessment. 
Bit of luck, I'm on the road to recovery already.

Thanks for reading!


  1. Keep up the healin', and maybe cut back on that dangerous exercise! :D

  2. Hope your foot heals quickly.

  3. Ouch! Take care, heal well and know that we are pulling for you!

  4. @ Ted, when the doctor suspected a fracture, I did say to her;
    "Okay, so exercise is bad, then."
    I was being sarcastic and smart-assey.
    Her response; "Oh, no, no, exercise is good..."
    Thanks, Ted.

    @ Bill M and Joe V, thanks very much.

  5. Where are you T?

  6. Still here, Anon. Been a very busy few months. I started another post last month (or was it back in March?) and I'll continue with it this weekend, if time permits.