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Foot and Ankle Myth #4: Foot Surgery is the Most Painful

In this mini-article, Dr. Lee talks about pain after foot and ankle surgery.

Myth: Many of my patients have the belief that foot surgery is the most painful type of surgery.

Response: This is a misconception… any type of surgery can be painful. However, there are many ways to manage pain after surgery and help to ease discomfort.  

While foot surgery isn’t necessarily more painful, it can be more inconvenient. Because many surgeries of the foot and ankle require periods of non-weight bearing (using a crutch, cane, or scooter to prevent placing any weight on your foot), it can be a significant inconvenience for people. The use of crutches or other devices to remain off the foot can create situations that people aren’t typically accustomed too. Add in other inconveniences of normal daily living, such as bathing or driving, and it can become a frustrating recovery process.  

That being said, advances in post-operative pain management have improved pain associated with foot surgery a great deal. From new local anesthetics, to leg blocks and cold therapy machines, many patients find that their post-operative pain can be tolerable.

Talk to your surgeon about risks of surgery and their pain management plan for you, to help appropriately set your expectations and help you through the process after surgery.

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