Today is the last day that will be the most noticeable scar on my foot.
Remember the X-ray I posted a while ago, showing the apparent source for my toe woes? And how the cortisone injection I had in November (November?!) made it so much better? Well. That wore off, and my foot went back to hurting as much, if not more, than before. It felt worse, anyway, since I was virtually pain free while the cortisone lasted. So! I went back to the podiatrist, and we decided that after exhausting the conservative options, it was time to consider surgery.
He suggested a minimally invasive procedure called a cheilectomy, in which he will remove the osteophyte, clean up the joint, perhaps drill some to stimulate production of new collagen, rinse everything, and then sew me back up. This should take, in his estimate, about 20 minutes. Recovery (which will mostly take place over spring break, next week) will involve a surgical shoe, but no boot or crutches. I only have to wear the shoe while I'm on my feet, and while the stitches are in (10-14 days), and he thinks I can be back to running in three to six months.** (When we were initially discussing the surgery, I immediately did the math in my head, and determined that this would potentially allow me to train for the Twin Cities Marathon--though even I realize this is a bad idea.)
So. I have no illusions that this will be a magical fix, or that my young, healthy, athletic, non-smoking ways will make for a perfectly non-eventful surgery or recovery. But after so long living with this, and having been forced to stop running altogether (and even walking as much as I would like to!), I'm read to give this fix a try. I check in to the surgical center in just over an hour.
*Pobbes is one half of a Kitten Problem we acquired in late January to deal with our (then) Mouse Problem. He and his littermate Isis (Icy) have educated me on just how quickly such small animals can become such a huge source of love (and frustration!). Most of you who still read here are already my FB friends and have access to my "(Almost) Daily Kitten" album, but I'd also be happy to post more kitty pix here!
**My podiatrist is a runner--marathoner, Bostoner, and triathlete--and he is the one whose focus has consistently been on running, which I think is pretty fantastic.