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Removing stitches after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

 
 
 
The morning after we arrived in Cabo, the swelling had gone down in my foot and my husband was ready to try and remove my stitches.
 
I could not wait!!
 
 
3 weeks post op after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

I thought I could do it on my own, but my hands were shaking too hard, so my husband took over.  The top of my foot was very sensitive, so he had to be very gentle.

 
Removing stitches after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

My husband took his time and made sure each thread of my 8 stitches was accounted for.

 
Removing stitches after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

After we were sure everything was done correctly, he adhered steri-strips to my incision to help hold it together.

3 weeks post op from lisfranc hardware removal surgery

I was now ready to do the “homework” my surgeon gave me.  He asked me to walk several times a day in the resort pools in order to begin to regain the proper movements for walking once again.

 
Relaxing by the pool after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

I was surprised to find that I had to once again, re-learn how to walk by repeating the mantra “heel, toe, follow through.”

 
 I was not able to swim at all, and was actually content walking around the pool smiling to myself because I was walking again without pain!!!!!!
 
My homework assignment after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

As you can see, the pool was large enough to really get in a lot of walking!  Once I was able to walk without concentrating, I pushed my husband on a float around the pool while he read a book. Other guests asked me if they could hire me to do the same thing for them!

 
Recovering from lisfranc hardware removal surgery

I decided that recovering from lisfranc hardware removal surgery is best done in Cabo at the Esperanza resort!!!

 
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Lisfranc hardware removal 2 weeks post op

2 weeks after my lisfranc hardware removal surgery I couldn’t wait to have my stitches removed.  The pain from this surgery mostly stemmed from the incision site and each step I took made me feel like my skin was ripping.  Because my incision looked red and was hot to the touch, I was concerned that it may be infected.

2 weeks post lisfranc hardware removal surgery

When I arrived at my 2 week post op appointment, my surgeon assured me I did not have an infection and that my incision looked “normal” with the amount of weight bearing I had been doing.

2 1/2 weeks post lisfranc hardware removal surgery

At this appointment my surgeon also decided not to remove my stitches after all.  My husband and I were leaving for a trip to Los Cabos a few days later and because feet often swell on long plane rides, my surgeon was not comfortable removing my stitches.  He didn’t want my incision to break open and then have me find someone in Mexico to stitch it up again!!!  (No one was going to touch “his” foot.)

He asked me to remove the stitches after waiting 24 hours for my foot to recover from plane swelling.  He sent me to Cabo with a suture removal kit and showed me how to remove my own stitches when the time came.

Suture removal kit

 Notice how the scissors has a pointed edge to help pull up the stitch for easier cutting..

On the plane, I brought along an ice substitute and iced my foot each leg of the trip.  We had to switch planes in Arizona and the airlines had a wheelchair waiting to transfer me to my new gate.  I honestly thought I was past all of the handicap stuff, so I was a little embarrassed as my wheel chair pusher wisked me through the Phoenix airport at lightening speed, with my husband trying to keep u

lisfranc hardware removal surgical boot
Lisfranc surgical boot Esperanza Resort Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

We arrived at our favorite resort in Cabo San Lucas, the Esperanza Resort.  My “cute” surgical boot and I made it at last!!

 

A few days after Thanksgiving, the hardware my surgeon removed from my foot arrived in the mail!!!
Hardware used to heal my lisfranc fracture

 

 

My surgeon knows I have been writing a lisfranc blog and was more than happy to let me keep the hardware he used to help my body heal from a lisfranc fracture.

lisfranc fracture plate


lisfranc fracture screws

What amazed me was to see the screws varied in color,  physical size and thread size.  Check out the teeth at the end of the screws!!!  YIKES!  Maybe it was for the best that my anesthesiologist would not let me watch either surgery!

 
 
lisfranc fracture screws

Psychologically it has been very rewarding to think I no longer have plates and screws in my foot.  My surgeon has assured me that in the next 6 weeks, the holes in my bones left by the screws will fill in.

33 weeks after lisfranc surgery

 
I cannot believe it was 33 weeks ago today that I had my lisfranc surgery!  I apologize for not keeping up with my blog these past few weeks.  
 
I had my lisfranc hardware removal surgery on Nov 20th (5 1/2 weeks ago) followed by entertaining for both Thanksgiving and Christmas plus my husband and I took a  “lisfranc hardware removal recovery trip to Cabo.  So things have been hectic.
 
I will try and pick up where I left off from my last blog.  
 
One week after my lisfranc hardware removal surgery was Thanksgiving and we were having 14 people over for Thanksgiving dinner.  I was told I could not lift a finger and had to stay off my foot as much as possible icing and elevating, so my husband and I had to get creative.  (As you can see, at Thanksgiving, my foot was really swollen, black and blue and extremely painful)

1 week after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

My husband hired a chief to prepare the food so the only thing my husband  had to do was warm up all the food.    Our guests were mostly family members and all understood that I had to play the princess once again.

1 week after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

2 days after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

 
 

 

 

 2 days after my lisfranc hardware removal surgery I was told to remove the dressing and ace bandage.  I wasn’t sure what my foot would look like, and I was surprised it wasn’t more swollen.

 
 
2 days after lisfranc hardware removal surgery

You can still see where my surgeon placed his initials and where I signed “yes!” indicating my right foot was the correct foot to be operating on.  My surgeon used the exact same incision for removing the hardware as he did for my original lisfranc surgery repair.

 
 
lisfranc hardware removal incision
 
 
 

After a shower I had to let my incision air dry and I needed to elevate and ice, something I know how to do!  My nurse told me the ice doesn’t have to be over the incision, and that icing the ankle will help just as much.  That knowledge came in handy since the incision area is very tender!

I have been keeping the incision covered with a large band-aid which protects the area from germs.  I remove the bandage daily to make sure the area around my stitches is not turning red with infection.

Lisfranc hardware removal surgical site

I have been meticulous about staying off my foot as much as possible and have been icing and elevating most of the time.  This has been hard, psychologically, for me because it seems like I have gone backwards in my lisfranc journey.  But I know, that in a little more than a week, my surgeon will remove my stitches and I will be able to resume walking again, and this time, I hope it will be pain free !

27 weeks post lisfranc surgery with more surgery tomorrow

After recovering from lisfranc surgery for 27 weeks, my husband and I took a quick trip to Florida before I head back into surgery tomorrow.
I was not able to walk barefoot on the beach, and sandals were still uncomfortable, but that didn’t stop me from being able to enjoy the feeling of sand on my toes!
27 weeks after lisfranc surgery

I decided to be really adventuresome and try walking through Sea World.  We took it slow, and I was able to manage walking around the entire park and enjoy several of the shows!

After visiting Sea World, I even managed to walk through the airport to catch our plane. When we got home last night, all it took to be pain free was a little ice, elevation and tylenol!!

Tomorrow I am having the hardware removed from my foot.  I am not at all nervous about the surgery itself, but am apprehensive about the recovery.  I have been assured by both my surgeon and his nurses that recovery will be much easier this time, but I still wonder how long it will take to recover to the exact point I am now.  I have worked hard to regain almost normal walking and I dread going backward.

I know, though, for a positive long term outcome, hardware removal is necessary

Today marks another milestone in my lisfranc recovery journey!  While shopping at the grocery store, perusing isle after isle of items, I suddenly became aware that I hadn’t thought about my foot since I walked into the store!  The realization hit me after walking halfway through the entire store without one ounce of pain or stiffness.

 

26 weeks post lisfranc surgery scar

 I couldn’t stop smiling at feeling so “normal” and greeted everyone I saw with a huge grin.  I did resist the urge to tell complete strangers to notice that I was just a normal walking shopper, once again.

 

  After checking out, another shopper bumped into me and I didn’t fall apart in a panic worrying she would step on my recovering foot.  In fact, my first reflex was no longer to pick up my right foot and hide it behind my left for protection.  Instead I managed to smile and say, “hello.”  WOW!!!!!

 

I am now able to walk about 3/4 the speed of other people and I can keep that gait without a limp!

26 weeks post lisfranc surgery wardrobe

 

I still am much more comfortable in sneakers and decided to buy matching jackets.  I girl needs choices of what to wear in  the cold Minnesota fall weather!!!

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