Part of last October's bunion surgery on my right foot involved an osteotomy. An osteotomy is when a bone is cut to shorten or change its alignment. Because bunions often change the angle of toes, as part of a bunionectomy, the bone sometimes must be realigned. In my case, the doc removed a tiny sliver of bone from my first metatarsal, rearranged the toe so it was straight again, and pinned the bones back together. The pins were only temporary, and removal would occur after the bone had completely healed.
|X-ray of my right foot|
Eight years ago, I had the same surgery on my left foot. After everything had healed, I asked my doc to postpone pin removal surgery until after ski season. Well, the pins had other plans, and started to work their way out way earlier than desired, poking up into the skin. My doc hurriedly fit me into her schedule, extracted the pins, and I ended up missing a month of the season.
This time around, I was paranoid of a repeat. But after several months, many hikes on the foot, and some short runs, it appeared the pins were behaving. Not wanting to waste the nice days of summer laid up again, I asked my doc to wait until fall to take them out. Then I made plans for the summer - lots of hikes, some backpacking trips, and joining my Monkey Butter Express teammates for another running relay.
But two weekends ago, things started to go south. After running 4.5 miles on Saturday, and hiking 5 on Sunday, my foot was swollen and sore. A tender, tiny bump appeared over my big toe joint. Was that the head of a pin?
In denial, I took things easy that entire week, thinking it would go away. But the soreness and bump persisted, and on Friday I finally visited my doctor. She confirmed my worst fear - one of the pins was moving. Since I had plans for the next couple weeks (including that relay), we discussed padding the affected area, and scheduling removal surgery for mid-July.
Of course, what did I do? I went hiking later that Friday, and ran 4 miles on Saturday. I woke up Sunday morning to a swollen, sore foot, forcing me to cancel a hike with a friend. Monday morning, walking from my car to into work, I felt a stabbing pain. It was as if the pin was trying to poke through the top of my foot. I knew right then there was no way I'd be able to run next weekend's relay. I called my doctor's office the minute it opened, and told her those pins needed to come out - now.
My doc is wonderful. She worked me in to her surgery schedule right away. After last Thursday those pesky pins were history.
|Back in the boot....again|
So....I'm on injured reserve for next couple weeks while the incision heals. At first I was devastated, forced to drop out of my relay (which I was really looking forward to) and miss hiking during peak wildflower season.
But...on the bright side, I've been home from work all week, allowing me to start catching up on this blog - I'm only a month and half behind! (You may have noticed the posts have been a bit more frequent lately.) I've got enough material to cover things while I'm out of action, so no worries - the show will go on!
And after my foot heals this time I'm DONE. For good.