Post-operative pain that exists after surgery with no identifiable cause is known as chronic post-surgical pain (CPSP). After foot surgery, any pain that lasts for more than two months is not considered a normal part of the healing process and should be evaluated by an experienced Tarrant County podiatrist to determine the cause.
Causes of Chronic Post-Surgical Pain After Foot Surgery
It is normal to experience swelling and pain after foot surgery especially if tissue has been cut or removed and bones were moved back into place. You may even experience tingling or burning as your foot heals. Once healing takes place, the pain should continue to decrease until it subsides. Pain that does not go away over time and worsens is considered to be chronic post-surgical pain and can interfere with your daily activities. According to our Tarrant County podiatrist, chronic post-surgical pain after foot surgery can occur for a variety of reasons, including:
- Tissue damage and inflammation
- Damage to a nerve or nerves
- Formation of scar tissue
Those at the highest risk for post-surgical pain are:
- Those who are of advanced age
- Those who are overweight
- Those with an autoimmune disease or pre-existing health condition such as diabetes
- Those having a history of anxiety or depression—both conditions can be linked to chronic pain
Treating Chronic Pain
There are ways to manage chronic post-surgical pain at home. You can try the following:
- Use relaxation and meditation techniques.
- Keep a pain journal to track your pain to help your doctor understand when you experience it and if anything triggers it.
- Use a medication such as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug or acetaminophen to help relieve mild to moderate pain.
- Use cold or warm compresses on the area that hurts to provide relief from pain.
For persistent chronic post-surgical pain that is severe, you may need physical therapy and rehabilitation with an experienced Tarrant County podiatrist. In addition, the following may be recommended:
- Opioid drugs
- Nerve blocks
- Anticonvulsant medication
- Another surgical procedure
Another option to treat chronic post-surgical pain is neurostimulation which uses gentle electrical pulses to stimulate nerves in your body to interrupt pain signals. No drugs or creams are used with neurostimulation, and it is safe and effective in many cases.
Contact Our Tarrant County Podiatrist for Help You Can Trust
If you are experiencing chronic post-surgical pain after foot surgery, you should be evaluated by our experienced and skilled Tarrant County podiatrist. Contact Alliance Foot & Ankle Specialists to schedule an appointment in our Grapevine or Keller office, fill out our convenient online contact form, or call our office today.