Failed Plantar Fasciitis Release Surgery

by Marie

6 years ago I agreed to Plantar Fasciitis Release surgery on my right foot because a Podiatrist insisted that I had no other choice. I had already had this same procedure on my left foot a few weeks earlier.

I was originally referred to this podiatrist by my orthopedist, who later told me that this surgery is almost never recommended or successful. (So we had this problem with the right hand not knowing what the left hand was doing.)

I had no pain after the surgery (nor did I after the left foot surgery) so I continued to walk on it. 2 days after the surgery I tripped. I had caught the tip of my right shoe on something just 2 inches high. As I brought my right foot forward to recover my balance something tore.

I have never experienced such blinding pain in my life.

It was like a knife had sliced my foot from the bottom of my arch across the top of my foot and up around my ankle. Now the podiatrist and orthopedist both say that there is nothing that I can do about the resulting ankle instability and continued pain.

My right foot is beyond being flatfooted it is severly pronated and causes pain not only in the medial ankle and the arch but also in several medial leg muscles.

I am so frustrated with the instability of that ankle that I have had an orthotic cast made for new shoe inserts once a year for the last 5 years, always in hope that the next one would help (I now have quit a useless collection of shoe orthotics).

The podiatrist offered ankle fusion surgery and the orthopedist emphatically said no. So I continue to live with severe pain and ankle instability.

I apparently torn more of the plantar facsia band as well as having strained or ruptured several tendons when I tripped. Due to the unstable ankle created by the surgery no other orthopedist will touch me (because doctors don't oppose each other).

I am sorry for being long winded, my question is; might any of your tendon therapy applications possibly offer pain relief for me or should I just live with it (as my doctors advise)?


Joshua Answers:

Hi Marie. Wow. That sounds....horrible.

And I have to say, there's few things that aggravate me as much as "You'll just have to live with it."

Here's the thing with Plantar Fasciitis surgery, and specifically a plantar fasciotomy which is what I'm assuming that you had...

If you pull out the pillars of a bridge, that bridge is much more likely to fall down.

If you sever the support structure of your foot, you're going to have problems.

Whether you had Plantar Fascia Tendonitis, or just a Pain Causing Dynamic in your foot, in
my world, surgery is overkill.

And while I'm sure your surgeon had the best of intentions.....

No pain after surgery was definitely a bad thing for you, as you couldn't feel what was happening in your foot, and then had a big rip/tear incident, which likely ripped/tore what the doctor had already cut apart.

So I'm going to come at you from an intention of decreasing your pain.

At this point, your bridge is missing a pillar or three, and let's focus on decreasing your pain, keeping the pain gone, and working with the structure that is there.

While you will 'heal', you won't regrow the severed tendon and connective tissue attachments (ala the flat foot).

Our primary focus is getting the Inflammation and pain enhancing chemical out. It may be that you can be pain free, once the injury heals up and we keep the Process of Inflammation out.

Then you'll be walking around on a structurally weak foot, and we'll have to see whether or not that irritates things.

Regardless, right now you're stuck in an acute Inflammatory response, which equals acute (and chronic) pain.

In response to your question, I definitely suggest that you get 'The Plantar Fasciitis Treatment That Works'.

It has concept and activities you can use to decrease you pain levels at significantly. Whether a person has new Plantar Faciitis or severe post surgery foot pain, the same concepts and activities apply.

And I'm available here to work with you and fine tune what you're doing for your specific situation.

Again, it is probably impossible to restore your foot structure to where it was, but I see no reason we can't get you out of pain, or at least close to it.

It will take some work and diligence, and a certain amount of time. (Follow the Healthy Foot Protocol for a full 7 days, and then we'll be able to more accurately gauge and make some predictions.)

And then we can take a look to see how much ongoing maintenance you'll need to stay out of pain/close to it.

Make sense?

Ask more questions, get more answers.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Apr 21, 2014
Failed plantar fasciitis surgery, then topaz, still can't walk
by: Jeannie

Have had heel pain for 10 years, always xray, heelspur, injection, othro insert and better.

Went thru this 3 or 4 times in 10 years. Last year it got so bad I could not walk without major pain, I have to walk hard surface 10 hrs a day at work, been doing this for over 20 years.

So last fall went to foot dr again, same xray, injection, nightsplint foe heelspur. This time all this did nothing to help. In tears each night after work because of pain.

Finally a mri showed torn tendon, also bone cracking because I had been walking on so long. On and off work, walking boot always, never better.

Just had topaz surgery a week ago, still cannot take any step on that foot with boot. Thought I would be walking on it a few steps in my boot but still waiting.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Jeannie.

You didn't leave an email nor check the notifications box so I hope you find this.

Yeah...splints, Corticosteroid Injections, etc, just don't fix anything.

And neither plantar fasciotomy nor Topaz procedure has any chance of fixing bone on not sure what your doctor was thinking there.

What's happened since the Topaz procedure?

RELATED: I Had Topaz Surgery The Nerve Cut In My Heel"

RELATED: Failed Endoscopic Plantar Fasciotomy Reattached Itself Scheduled For Open Plantar Fasciitis sugery

Jan 12, 2017
No relief 90 days after plantar fasciitis release
by: Kyle

I had release surgery October 18 2016 it's January 9 2017 and I'm still having pain and swelling and I don't know why it's almost 90
Days shouldn't it be normal now ?

I'm starting therapy January 11 , I have to ice my foot 3 xs a day .... Has anyone else been through this and would an MRI help at this point ?


Joshua Comments:

Hi Kyle.

You didn't check the notifications box or leave your email, so I hope you find this response.

1. 90 days to normal? Who told you that was even a possibility?

Even minor foot surgery isn't going to be back to 100% 90 days later (well, in some cases, but as a general statement...)

Plantar fascia release is not 'minor'.

2. They didn't do an MRI before surgery? What exactly were they operating on/hoping to fix? Did they just randomly sever a major structural support in your foot hoping that would make the foot pain go away?

Feb 20, 2017
Fascia release surgery now heel pain and doctors with no answers
by: Anonymous

Had fascia release surgery in June 2016. Have had pain on the arch ever since.

I have been seen the physiotherapist 3x a week and chiropractor 2x a week.

Now I have a new heel pain. Very sensitive to touch and when walking bare foot. No one seems to understand what is going on.

I've been to the surgeon twice for follow-ups and he just tells me he doesn't have an answer for my issues. Can you help me?

Not sure if there is any other treatment that I could try. I also have a bone spur.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Anonymous.

That doctors and surgeons don't understand what the problem is is the main reason they shouldn't be doing surgery for plantar fasciitis.

Plantar Fasciitis, like all forms of Tendonitis, is made up of multiple factors all working together.

Why doctors think that cutting and/or severing a major structural support in the foot is a solution to anything, especially a problem that they don't understand and can't fully describe, is beyond me.

Having a Bone Spur isn't ideal, but it may or may not be causing any pain/problem (it is being formed due to the same factors that make up tendonitis/PF.

Read this thread. Follow the links and read those pages. I of course recommend that you get and start working with The Plantar Fasciitis Treatment That Works.

Jun 06, 2017
Life changing
by: leisha

I also had plantar fasciitis release surgery back in October 2016. I am WAY worse off than I was prior to the surgery.

I stayed completely non weigh bearing for 12 days. After which I got a boot to wear. Within the week I complained that it felt as though I was constantly stepping on a rope or over an extension cord, or that maybe my sock was bunched up under my foot. None of that was happening of course, it was just a sensation that I was feeling.

Now, 9 months later, and MANY follow up appointments, that feeling is still there and it has intensified.

My orthopedic gave me an injection 2 weeks ago and said this is all I can do for you. The injection did NOTHING, and the pain never goes away.

This has totally changed my daily life! What can I do? I use to live a very active life, and that has been taken from me.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Leisha.

I'm sorry to hear that. Not fun.

What self care have you done since surgery other than time and rest? Or, what did your doctor advise you to do for self care asides from time and rest/staying off of it?

Oct 29, 2017
Orthotics really helped
by: Anonymous

My heart breaks for the commenters here. I luckily avoided surgery for my plantar fasciitis.

I gained weight after an unrelated surgery, and got plantar fasciitis in both heels. Orthotics did the trick until I was able to lose the weight.

Samurai Insoles, Soles and Powerstep were my favorites, Superfeet I didn’t care for.

Glad it worked because that was awful.

Feb 09, 2018
why do my feet throb ache so bad I have to sit?
by: Anonymous

I had plantar fasciotomy surgery November 2017 left foot and December 2017 right foot..Followed directions and wore the boot...I am a RN and I do 3 - 12 hour shifts at the hospital a week for the past 18 years. I went back today the 9th of Feb. 2018 for only 6 hours and this is after being off for 12 weeks as I was told that I would loose my position if I didn't return to work today.

I have had intensifying pain in both feet as my day went on, I don't sit much at all. I am in such pain now I am icing both feet. Its is the same pain I had before surgery and its actually worse. I am so frustrated. The podiatrist referred me to neurologists for spinal MRI.

They show cervical spinal stenosis, arthritis in most of my spine as well as hemangiomas wrapped around my spine..I do have lumbar pain and neck pain but none of these things the neurologists have said should be contributing towards causing my foot pain.

I really just want answers at this point I am so tired of not getting relief. Of course I live an active life style. I couldn't go to the Philadelphia Eagles Superbowl parade just as an example of how my life is being affected. Stand in a crowd, just not possible.

I am 52 year old. I have EMG for feet scheduled at end of month . Does anyone have any advice. I only got the surgery because I was told I wouldn't suffer any longer after this operation.

I saw three podiatrists before agreeing to get this operation for the sake of saving my job. The pain was that bad before the surgery, also for at least a year I had suffered from this pain, and I did all the non-invasive measurements to no avail.

Could I have arthritis in my feet? Could I have fibromyalgia in my feet? I want an MRI done on my feet. THere was an x ray on my feet 6 mos prior to my surgery which showed bone spurs bi lateral as well..HELP PLEASE!


Joshua Comments:

1. "I only got the surgery because I was told I wouldn't suffer any longer after this operation."

This is the lie that surgeons tell their patients.

2. "I saw three podiatrists before agreeing to get this operation for the sake of saving my job."

Neither podiatrists nor surgeons can tell you WHY the Plantar Fascit is 'tight', how it's causing pain, how/why it's the problem that needs surgery, nor how a surgery will fix the problem nor the pain.

But yes, I appreciate that you trusted them and what they said.

3. "Could I have arthritis in my feet?"

Yes. You can have arthritis anywhere there's a joint.

4. "Could I have fibromyalgia in my feet".

No. Fibromyalgia doesn't work that way. It's a systemic issue not a local issue.

5. Next, podiatrists/surgeons will blame the bone spurs for the pain. With no explanation for why the bone spurs weren't the cause of the pain previoiusly.

See: Bone Spurs

Bone spurs can cause pain/problem, but not always.

6. See: Pain Causing Dynamic

It's a huge part of your overall scenario. Tightness causes problem and pain which causes tightness which causes problem and pain. Add in inflamation and nutritional lack to the mix, have everything you describe.

Jul 19, 2018
I don't think that the surgery is a good choice
by: Doina

I had my surgery almost eight weeks ago and I have problems. The cut is red and inflamed, and the area where the cut was done inside is very painful. I had few attempts to get back to normal life (cooking, taking a short walk, or going out)but the next day I couldn't walk. The pain is worst than it was before the surgery.

All I can do now is to stay in bed with ice on my foot. It looks that there is an abscess, and on Monday I go for a MRI. In the day he proposed me to have the surgery, I asked him to recommend me for a laser treatment, but he said that the surgery is the only option because the laser will not work. He presented me the surgery like a joke, " I will do a little cut, and then I will cut a little the tendon to release the tension. Then, you can walk...bla,bla,bla".

Only after he removed the stitches, he told me that I need six weeks to recover. I really trusted him, and now I feel frustrated. I didn't go back to him to fix what he did because I cannot trust him anymore. I don't blame him for the infection because it can happen to any doctor, but he didn't act ethical when he rushed into surgery and didn't tell the truth about the recovery period.

I got to the conclusion that it is better to make a little research to make sure your doctor is telling you the truth.

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