Plantar fasciotomy at age 34, still have pain 5 weeks after

by Kevin
(RI)

Hi there. I've experienced mostly all the symptoms everyone else here has. About 2 years ago I started getting the typical pain in the left heel so commonly reported.


I tried all the typical conservative approaches with no pain relief. On March 8, 2011 I had the fasciotomy release done on the medial 1/3rd of my left fascia.

It has now been 4 weeks post op. The first 3 weeks I pretty much stayed off my feet with the exception of hygiene needs and hobbled around on crutches.

In the start of my 4th week the doctor gave me instructions to start weening myself off the crutches over the last week. By last Friday, 4/1 I was pretty much off the crutches and limping around.

It is now the start of my 5th week post op and the doctor gave me instructions to bear weight, but take it easy. I am sore and all though parts of my heel feel a little relieved I now have more pain directly on the bottom of my left heel, as opposed to before, the pain was towards the inside of the left heel more.

As many others, it is tough to stay optimistic.

I'm icing it right now, as this has been my first day back to work in full shoes. I'm looking into negative heel shoes right now to aid in my recovery and will ask my doctor about them next week during my checkup. They seem like a viable aid to help reduce my pain symptoms.

One question I have, if a fasciotomy is to be considered successful, how much time to go by before I should normally have no pain?

Like said above after being off the foot for 3 weeks, there was no heel pain, but now after being on it again for the last week, it seems similar pain has returned?

Thanks for reading



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Joshua Answers:

Hi Kevin.

Plantar Fasciitis can be bad news, but at least one's structure is intact.

Go in there and cut the structural supports, and it's a whole new ball game.

How long for pain to go away for it to be considered 'successful'? I really can't say.

I think a more valuable way to look at it is, 'If I can walk on it without pain, then it was a success.'

Having said that, I've seen doctors predict anywhere from a month to 8 months for pain to go away.

I imagine it depends on how much structure they cut.

That structure got taut when you put weight on the foot. The doctor cut it partially or completely. Now you put weight on your foot and that structure no longer provides resistance, or a partly severed structure provides resistance but....it's cut down the middle.

And all that force has to go -somewhere-.

Your pain went away in the first few weeks because you were off your foot. Now that you're putting load on it again....

Also, the -cause- of the original problem is still in place. It wasn't the plantar fascia, it was all the tight muscles and connective tissue of the lower leg.

The doctor cut where he cut for whatever reason. And considering that surgery causes damage, you're at four weeks which, all things considered, isn't that long of a period post-injury.

Heck, just stepping on a nail hurts for 3ish weeks, and your surgery caused a lot more damage than that.

And, of course, greatly aggravated the pre-existing Process of Inflammation.

Now you're walking again. And that's going to cause you to be sore, not just from the surgery injury, but because your structure has changed. And since that's changed, muscles are going to work differently and they're likely to get sore and unhappy (and they already were sore and unhappy).


In short, your symptoms are unsurprising for where you're at at week 5. Are you doomed to more pain, or will it get better? I really have no idea at this point, it could go either way, and there's lots of factors involved.

You of course can help it with Ice Dipping and increasing your protein and good fats intake, and loosening up the structures of the back of your lower leg.




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Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert
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Comments for Plantar fasciotomy at age 34, still have pain 5 weeks after

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May 24, 2016
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My foot hurts more now after plantar fasciitis surgery!!
by: Sean

I had my fascia cut and also a gastric cut in my calf to try to relieve pain in my heel. They said it was plantar fasciitis.

Now my foot and heel hurt five times as much making it hard to even just stand for long periods. Now they are saying I have small fiber neuropathy after some tests.

I need to figure a way to get rid of this pain in my right foot. It's so bad to work each day with it. My doctor has mentioned a nerve block next. Any ideas??? By the way I'm only 32 too:(


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Joshua Comments:

Hi Sean.

1. What tests did they do to determine 'small fiber neuropathy'?

2. They went in and cut structural supports. Which not only causes injury, but weakens and disrupts the structural integrity of your foot/lower leg structures and working mechanism, making things work less well. Which causes problems.

3. Your surgery ignored all the causes of your original pain/problem (because that's what surgery does) and left you with more pain and less function.

4. A nerve block is the final admission of your doctor(s) that they are helpless to fix the initial problem or the problem that they created with the surgery.

Nothing will get fixed, they'll just crimp the nerve that's the conduit for the pain signal...but that's not all nerves do.

Their suggestion of surgery didn't help...will their suggestion of a nerve block?


You might have to do that just to knock the pain down.

But first I would do all the things that one should do to deal with plantar fasciitis issues. (See: a href="www.tendonitisexpert.com/plantar-fasciitis-treatment-that-works.html">The Plantar Fasciitis Treatment That Works program)

Read this whole thread and follow the links to other info pages to get a more full understanding of what's going on and why I would suggest the basics of treating tendonitis dynamics even post-surgery.



Feb 24, 2015
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Original Thread Poster
by: Kevin

After almost 4 years I can say the foot is better.


It probably took about 2 years to recover and I wouldn't say its 100% of what it originally was about 6 years ago. I'd say the pain reduction is on the order of 80%, with a residual ache all over the foot and ankle joint. Due to the cutting of the plantar fascia, the entire physiology of the foot structure changes. Other areas of your foot have to compensate and those changes cause ache all over the ankle joint. Not pain, just a constant ache.

What's funny about all this is that I developed a heel spur in my right foot last March, about a year ago. It got worse and I had a cortisone injection in October and it worked. No more pain in my right foot. Strange?

I think the thing that helped with my second heel spur in the right foot this time, is the shoes I've been wearing. I-roc. They force you to walk on your arch and the front of your foot. A little awkward, but it keeps your body weight off your sore heel. I might get another cortisone shot back in my original, left heel to see if that takes the ache away that I've had for the last 4 years.

Surgery recovery from plantar fasciotomy takes about 1 year and 9 months. You'll walk on it with severe to significant pain for about 3 months. Then it will be moderate pain for about 6 months and then for the next year it will be mild pain and eventually recede to a constant ache.

There is no good side to this story. Get used to it hurting to some degree for the rest of your life. I'll see if a cortisone shot back in the initial location of the surgery helps.

The symptoms started March and got whose through the summer.

Finally in the fall I got a cortisone shot in the hell and it seems to have taken care of it. I recommend I-roc foot wear. It helped weight of the heel to allow the foot to shoot she's go heal.

I-roc shoes really help. They look like old man/old lady shoes, but they very functional.

This is a 4 year follow up from my original post. Thanks for reading.



Feb 22, 2015
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plantar faciotomy at 34
by: Barbara

Hi
I am 34 and had an open plantar fasciotomy as well the only difference for me is the week after my surgery my doctor wanted light weight bearing on my foot and a little more after two weeks.Im now on my 3rd week and although i still have a good bit or soreness and pain its nothing like before.

You really should talk to your doctor about a mri to make sure it hasnt healed back together thats one of the reasons most doctors want light weight after the first week.

I hope everything improves for you.



May 06, 2014
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My 4 years of plantar fascititis pain leading up to plantar fasciotomy
by: Sandra

I started having symptoms approx 4 years ago in May, I remember this because I got married the following June. I thought when it started that it was a "stone bruise". I hopped around for a couple of months hoping the pain would go away and it didnt. :(

Well anyways it's been 4 years now and the pain only got worse. I have seen a Orthopaedic many times now, I've had numerous steroid injections, night splints, therapy, ice, ibuprofen and now in 5 days I'm scheduled to have a open plantar fasciotomy. I'm real nervous about it all. I've tried to read everything that I can about plantar fasciotomy and its recovery.


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Joshua Comments:

Hi Sandra.

That's a long time to hurt, and it's a shame that doctors continually prescribed you treatment options that had very little chance of working.

And of course surgery is the next and final option in the doctor's limited tool bag/bag of tricks.

I hope the plantar fasciotomy goes well. Please keep us updated.


See Related: I Still Have Foot Pain 2 Years After My Plantar Fasciotomy



Feb 05, 2013
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Post op pain and on my feet for 7 hours
by: Anonymous

I am almost 6 weeks post op from a right foot plantar fasciotomy, and just returned back to work. By the end of the day my foot was killing me. I am on my feet 7 hours at work. So I knew it wasn't going to be "pain free".

I still feel the heel pain and was just wondering if it will get better or am I just experiencing this until my feet adjust to standing more now?

I have also been experiencing calf pain all day, is this to be expected?

Praying it gets better soon


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Joshua Comments:

Hi Postopynonymous.

Unfortunately, I can't say whether it will get better or not. That depends on the self care you're doing, that depends on what the surgeon did in there.

What are you doing for self care?

What did the surgeon do in there?



Oct 02, 2011
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6 months post op -- Plantar fasciotomy at age 34, still have pain 5 weeks after
by: KV

I'm now 7 months post from the foot surgery back in March. I do still have pain. It's manageable, but noticeable.

I had and still have compensation pains on the outside of the foot, but it slowly seems to be subsiding. It truly feels like I just have tendinitis these days. The site if the heel spur still has pain, but only slight: like a 2 or 3 out of 10. I hope when a year has come and gone the pain will be gone, but I'm not quite so sure? At least I can go most of the day on my feet if I need to now.

I do need to change my diet and excersize more. It would be helpful I'm sure.

Sometimes getting older can be tough.



Oct 02, 2011
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PF Surgery -- Plantar fasciotomy at age 34, still have pain 5 weeks after
by: Anonymous

Hope your pain is reducing. 5 months is not a long time. As they say, time is a great healer......

Robbo

May 19, 2011
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PLANTAR FASCIOTOMY RELEASE SURGERY DIDNT HELP
by: DEBBIE

I HAD A PLANTAR FASCIIOTOMY RELEASE IN DECEMBER OF 2009 WHICH WAS EXTREMELY PAINFUL.

AFTER THE SURGERY MY FOOT WAS WRAPPED IN A POSITION THAT MY FOOT WAS RELAXED AND TOE POINTED, WHICH I'M NOW QUESTIONING AS TO WHETHER MY FOOT SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN A STRETCHED POSITION SO THE TENDONS WOULD HEAL THAT WAY.

I HAD 6 MONTHS OF PHYSICAL THERAPY, CORTISONE INJECTIONS TO FOLLOW, WHICH WERE EXTREMELY DIFFICULT BECAUSE THERE WAS SO MUCH SCAR TISSUE THAT THE NEEDLE COULD NOT GO ALL THE WAY IN, SO THE DOCTOR HAD TO CREATE PLACES WITH THE NEEDLE TO INJECT THE CORTISONE. THE NEEDLE WAS IN MY FOOT FOR FIVE MINUTES....AHHH

AFTER A YEAR AND HALF, I STILL HAVE EXTREME PAIN.

I THEN TRIED SHOCKWAVE THERAPY ABOUT A MONTH AGO, STILL I HAVE NO RELIEF. I AM AT MY WITS END WITH THIS PAIN.

ITS EXTREMELY DEBILITATING FOR A PERSON WHO'S JOB DEPENDS ON THAT PERSON TO BE ON HER FEET. I HAVE MY OWN SLANT BOARD AND STRETCH REGULARLY, SO I KNOW ITS NOT MY LEGS THAT ARE MY PROBLEM.

WHAT IS THE NEXT STEP??


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Joshua Comments:

Hi Debbie.

Sorry to hear about all that.

I also think after the surgery you should have been in a neutral or slightly lengthened position. The whole point of the surgery was to -lengthen-.

So what now?

You have to deal with the original source of the problem, which probably wasn't even your foot. You have to make sure your nutrition is up to snuff.

You have to reverse the problems the foot surgery caused, as well as reverse the Plantar Fasciitis.

Tendonitis, for the most part, is completely predictable. The right tools help, and the wrong tools don't. It's safe to say you've been experiencing the wrong tools.

I suggest that you get my 'The Plantar Fasciitis Treatment That Works' and the Companion ebook that comes with it. It's a complete plan. And I can give you pointers etc via email specifically for surgery repair.

Otherwise, find the pages on:
Magnesium for Tendonitis, and
How To Reduce Inflammation.



May 04, 2011
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8 weeks post op after plantar fasciotomy release and heel spur removal
by: Anonymous

I am now over 8 weeks post op from the plantar fasciotomy release to help ease the pain from my heel spur.

I am pretty happy to report that the heel spur site is hardly experiencing pain any longer.

When I went into this surgery I was about an 7 or 8 on a 1-10 pain scale. Post op at 5 weeks I was at like an 8-9 and now I'm glad to report that I'm like a 3-4 in just 3 quick weeks!

I am however, experiencing compensation pains along the outside of my foot and inbetween my 3rd and 4th toes up at the front of the foot. Overall, the pain seems to be subsiding. I would have never realized this would be this long of a recovery time. I'll keep my fingers crossed and stay optimistic that this whole thing worked!

Dr. wants to see me in another month to see how progress is and I've also been going to physical therapy again to do some strength training and massage therapy. I've also bought a few pairs of real comfortable shoes/sneakers/boots/sandles.

I will never take my feet for granted again!

Thanks for reading.


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Joshua Comments:

Yeah, isn't it amazing how we take our body, and parts of our body, for granted.

Until pain shows up, and then it's a whole different story....

So yes, you can expect compensatory patterns and pains to come and go and come and go and stay.

Basically, your brain has to figure out how to walk again, to to fire everything as optimally as possible.

Surgery drastically changed the set up of you foot, so this have to shift, parts of muscles that haven't worked for a long time have to start working again, and just might get sore and/or unhappy.

Keep doing the strengthening and massage, and keep getting better!



Apr 15, 2011
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6 weeks post op
by: KC

Hi Joshua,

I am now 6 weeks post op from my plantar fasciotomy to relieve the pain associated with my heel spur. At the beginning of the week I was in a lot of pain. I bought some orthopedic shoes, called I-Roc, and I must say the pain in my heel has virtually all but gone away in 3 days! These shoes in tandem with taking it easy and a daily dose of Aleve to reduce inflamation has really helped. These shoes have made a huge difference just in 2 days. I was skeptical at first, but am pleased with the results and can only image that I'll feel even better in another week.

Again, thank you for all the great information on your website. If all goes well and my foot feels better by the end of next week, I am going to start bicycling to gain some strength and get some much needed excersise!



Apr 06, 2011
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Thank you
by: Kevin

Thank you for the kind words and great information. I've pretty much read most of your website today and there's so much information on here.

I was quite overwhelmed yesterday by all the pain. A good night sleep and staying off of it today helped a bit. I talked to the dr today and asked if I could stretch the fascia some. He approved. So tonight I filled the tub with hot water, massaged the foot/heel, stretched out the gastrocs and the fascia. After that I used a hard solid rubber ball the size of a racket ball to roll massage the whole foot area and then iced it down two times; once for a half hour then another twenty minutes about an hour later. I must say it feels pretty good right about now.

Im going to try to stay optimistic! I'll keep you posted and again, thank you for the good advice.


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Joshua Comments:

Hey Kevin.

No reason not to stay optimistic! Most anything can get better, it just takes work.

Notice you felt better after the massage. Keep doing that. And do it on the back of your lower leg too.

You want to get better? Keep at it.

It's all about helping your body heal. Because by default, it often doesn't do such a great job of it all on it's own.



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