At my appointment today, my doctor said just what I was hoping he would say: that I can transition to regular shoes!
I no longer have to wrap the foot, but I can if it makes it feel better. I should probably keep wearing the splint so that all the toes keep going in the right direction (straight).
He also answered the other questions I had:
Did he remove a piece of bone? He did remove a small piece of the bump on the side of the foot, but he did not remove a piece of the metatarsal. Instead, he made an angular cut, hinged it with one screw, and then slid the bone until it was straight. Then he secured it with the other screw. I can’t really visualize what he was saying, and he even said that when you see it in surgery it makes perfect sense, but it’s hard to explain.
Am I going to regain flexibility in my big toe? Yes. He said it will take some work on my part. I’ll need to wiggle it around manually, and he suggested some exercises to do, but he said that by the next time I come back, I will probably have flexibility again. If not, he’ll prescribe physical therapy, but he said most of his patients don’t need it.
Is there something I can do to reduce the appearance of the scar? I actually didn’t ask him this question because my friend Talley, who is a nurse, already told me that I can use Mederma or some Vitamin E cream to help with that.
What activities can I do when? Basically, Dr. H. said that I should do it gradually, but I’m free to walk, cycle, or swim as I feel comfortable.
I feel like my foot hurts more when it’s cold outside. Is this normal? Am I imagining it? He said I’m not imagining it, and it is normal, but they don’t really know why. Some people think it’s the hardware, but he said I don’t have very much hardware, so he doesn’t think that’s the cause. He said that I will probably have soreness all through this winter, but I should be fine in subsequent winters. (And that’s good, because I’m never gonna get Chef to move south. I think he’s still hoping for retirement in Alaska!)
I didn’t ask yet about the next surgery, either. It kind of slipped my mind, partly because I was so excited about being able to wear regular shoes again! I’m not too concerned, though; he said the x-rays look great (thank you very much), so I think that means I’m healing just fine.