Pre and Post Op Bunionectomy Tips

Howdy! Today I’ll be giving tips for pre and post bunionectomy. Hopefully this will help anyone who is having the surgery done.

Depending on your ward, you might be given slightly different instructions, but your doctor should provide you with papers explaining all of your pre and post op duties when your set surgery date gets closer.

I want to share some of the things I did to prepare for surgery and what I found helpful.

(I’m obviously not a medical professional, this is just what my instructions were and what I did to help myself be more comfortable and prepare.)

My pre op paper had instructions like:

  • Be finished eating solid foods by 7pm.
  • No liquids after midnight.
  • No greasy or fried food the day before surgery.
  • Removing all makeup and nail polish.
  • Removing all jewelry and any piercings. (I had to sign a waiver because I had a few new ear piercings and refused to remove them. Which was fine, the nurse just taped up my ear to cover them.)
  • Wear loose and comfortable clothing. Something you can easily slip on and off.
  • Make sure you have a ride home.

That’s basically all the doctors pre op instructions were.

My own pre op tips include:

  • Setting up your bed so that you can lie down or sit up and still have your foot elevated.
  • Having a couple good pillows ready. One for your foot to rest and be elevated on, and the other for under your knee. YOU WILL NEED IT. (All the bandages they put on my foot and up my leg weighed about five pounds and that was killing my knee when my leg was propped up and didn’t have support under my knee.)
  • Getting everything you need to entertain yourself for a while. Tv, phone, music, laptop, books, chargers, etc.
  • Have everything you need close by on your bed with you or on your nightstand or dresser. Things like daily vitamins, water bottles, and stuff.
  • GET CLEANSING CLOTHS. Seriously, these are a must since you most likely won’t be showering for awhile. You still need to be clean so cleansing cloths are a BIG help.
  • Knee walker > Crutches. If you can, I highly suggest investing in a knee walker. It’ll make things so much easier for you. If your insurance covers a knee walker, they will be able to provide you with places around town where you can get one. And you don’t have to buy one necessarily, you can rent them. Which is what I’m doing. You can also find them online. Just ask your doctor about a knee walker instead of crutches to hear his or her opinion. But make sure that you give yourself enough time to get one!
  • I didn’t have this problem, but some people complained of a sore throat after surgery because of the anesthesia. So buying some sore throat drops may be helpful to you just in case.

And that was pretty much pre op for me.

After surgery, the nurse helped dress me back up in my shorts and hoodie and then put me in a wheelchair and wheeled me away to a different part of the recovery room. She gave me a nice, cold glass of water and a granola bar since I was starving.

Then I got home, and post op began.

My doctors post op paper instructions included:

  • Taking medication as instructed.
  • Keep bandages clean and dry.
  • Don’t get bandages wet or play with them.
  • Don’t sit with your feet down for more than ten seconds. Your feet will swell and become uncomfortable and painful.
  • Keep feet elevated at all times to avoid pressure and swelling.
  • Put an ice pack on top of your bandages right at the ankle bend.

My own post op tips include:

  • Putting another ice pack under your knee to keep the blood cool. Plus it feels good(:
  • Keeping all meds within reach. Since my antibiotics had to be taken three times a day, and I had a bunch of pain and anti nausea meds too just in case, it only made sense to have them close by.
  • ALWAYS have your foot elevated. Especially for the first few days. The first time I went to the bathroom I let my foot down for two seconds so I could move over and sit and blood started crazily dripping out from the bandages. So yeah, elevation!
  • If you can tolerate a little bit of pain, SKIP THE PAIN MEDS. Don’t be a wuss. Seriously, these pain meds are the strongest shit you can get and you don’t want to become dependent on them. Don’t take them if all you’re having is some throbbing or aching. I’m an extremely emotional and sensitive 18 year old female and I didn’t need my pain meds. If I can do it, you can do it.

Keep in mind that most of your pain will probably come from your mind and you worrying and being fearful and thinking that you’re going to be in so much pain, when in reality it won’t be nearly as bad.

  • Stay in bed. Don’t try to move around unless you really have to. The only time you should really be moving is when you shuffle to get to the bathroom.

And that’s it for my pre and post op bunionectomy tips. If I happen to think of others I’ll edit them in later.

I hope these tips will be useful to anyone with a bunionectomy in the future.

Have a happy day!(:

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