Anxious and Terrified After Surgical Complication

Posted by klro0001 @klro0001, Sep 21, 2019

Hello. I am a 36-year-old, wife of 7 years, currently working full time. Three months ago, I had a bunion removed from my left foot. The surgery consisted of a nerve block and general anesthesia. I had no problems until about a month ago. I had numbness (or maybe a mild loss of sensation) on the front of my left leg. No pain, no impact on my mobility. My surgeon indicated that I may have nerve damage from the nerve block. He prescribed a medical food that contains folate, B12, and curcumin. About 2 1/2 weeks ago, I started experiencing a swollen feeling in my left leg that comes and goes. I’ve also experienced tingling, cold tingling, minor burning sensations, and a shooting pain in my inner left ankle. All of these symptoms are brief and do not last very long, but they happen throughout the day. This week, I’ve started feeling like water is dripping on both legs. When the sensations were only in my left leg, I was okay. Now that the sensations have moved to my other leg, I’m very concerned and scared. I have a neurologist appointment on Monday and I’m a nervous wreck. Has anyone out there had a similar experience after regional anesthesia? I feel so alone. Thanks for any insight and thanks for reading this post.

Liked by Lisa Lucier

Hello @klro0001, Welcome to Connect. The symptoms you describe can be scary and when you throw in the unknown aspects of what is causing the symptoms I can understand how you feel. The one thing I can share with you is that you are not alone here. There are others who have experienced similar symptoms and hopefully will be able to share their experience with you.

I had a total knee replacement in April and I was a little quesy talking with the anesthesiologist who went over the nerve block procedure with me for the knee replacement surgery and explained all of the risks. I had some pain after the nerve block wore off but the pain pills helped with that for the first few days after the surgery. Since you have an appointment with your neurologist on Monday it might be helpful to write down all of your symptoms and prioritize them so that you can discuss them with the neurologist to discuss treatment strategies and possible options.

Do you know what type of nerve block and regional anesthesia you had? Was it just the one leg/foot that had the nerve block?

Liked by Lisa Lucier

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@johnbishop

Hello @klro0001, Welcome to Connect. The symptoms you describe can be scary and when you throw in the unknown aspects of what is causing the symptoms I can understand how you feel. The one thing I can share with you is that you are not alone here. There are others who have experienced similar symptoms and hopefully will be able to share their experience with you.

I had a total knee replacement in April and I was a little quesy talking with the anesthesiologist who went over the nerve block procedure with me for the knee replacement surgery and explained all of the risks. I had some pain after the nerve block wore off but the pain pills helped with that for the first few days after the surgery. Since you have an appointment with your neurologist on Monday it might be helpful to write down all of your symptoms and prioritize them so that you can discuss them with the neurologist to discuss treatment strategies and possible options.

Do you know what type of nerve block and regional anesthesia you had? Was it just the one leg/foot that had the nerve block?

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Thank you for responding and for the welcome. I don’t remember the name of the nerve block but I know that it was behind my left knee. Numbed my entire leg and foot.

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@johnbishop

Hello @klro0001, Welcome to Connect. The symptoms you describe can be scary and when you throw in the unknown aspects of what is causing the symptoms I can understand how you feel. The one thing I can share with you is that you are not alone here. There are others who have experienced similar symptoms and hopefully will be able to share their experience with you.

I had a total knee replacement in April and I was a little quesy talking with the anesthesiologist who went over the nerve block procedure with me for the knee replacement surgery and explained all of the risks. I had some pain after the nerve block wore off but the pain pills helped with that for the first few days after the surgery. Since you have an appointment with your neurologist on Monday it might be helpful to write down all of your symptoms and prioritize them so that you can discuss them with the neurologist to discuss treatment strategies and possible options.

Do you know what type of nerve block and regional anesthesia you had? Was it just the one leg/foot that had the nerve block?

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Also, I’ve been keeping a daily symptom journal for the past couple of weeks so that I will remember everything.

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@klro0001 I think you should seek medical attention now. That might be a blood clot in your lower leg and having had recent surgery puts you at risk for that. You could be getting one in the other leg too. When you see that one leg is bigger than the other (and wasn't before) or the skin looks shiny, those are symptoms of a blood clot because of fluid retention. It may feel hard. My mom had them and I saw that happen. The change in sensation can be from fluid retention and swelling. Please call your doctor now and ask their advice. Don't wait for the appointment next week. They may tell you to go to an urgent care clinic or emergency room. Doppler imaging will confirm if you have a blood clot. My mom got blood clots after she was more sedentary and using a wheelchair. I presume that you are probably sitting a lot because of the foot surgery. If it were me, I would be at the emergency room now. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/deep-vein-thrombosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20352557

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@jenniferhunter

@klro0001 I think you should seek medical attention now. That might be a blood clot in your lower leg and having had recent surgery puts you at risk for that. You could be getting one in the other leg too. When you see that one leg is bigger than the other (and wasn't before) or the skin looks shiny, those are symptoms of a blood clot because of fluid retention. It may feel hard. My mom had them and I saw that happen. The change in sensation can be from fluid retention and swelling. Please call your doctor now and ask their advice. Don't wait for the appointment next week. They may tell you to go to an urgent care clinic or emergency room. Doppler imaging will confirm if you have a blood clot. My mom got blood clots after she was more sedentary and using a wheelchair. I presume that you are probably sitting a lot because of the foot surgery. If it were me, I would be at the emergency room now. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/deep-vein-thrombosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20352557

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Hi! That’s a great suggestion. I actually went to my PCP on September 4th for that very concern. That was not the case. Consequently, she referred me to a neurologist.

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@klro0001

Hi! That’s a great suggestion. I actually went to my PCP on September 4th for that very concern. That was not the case. Consequently, she referred me to a neurologist.

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@klro0001 That's great that you were aware and checked with your doctor. That must have given you some peace of mind even though you are waiting for an evaluation. Someone else who reads this conversation might benefit from the information. I hope your neurologist can figure things out and help.

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Hi, sorry for your health woes. One thing struck me that’ I’d like to comment on – the medical food your Dr.gave you. When I first had PN symptoms the neurologist prescribed Metanx (a medical food requiring an rx) for me. Shortly after starting it my symptoms became much worse-pain, tingling and numbness in arms and legs. So I reduced it to 1x a day and felt better, then stopped it completely. It hit me later that he never even checked my B6, folate etc. before prescribing it! I think I was taking too much B6 which can cause the symptoms I had. Later on my primary care Dr. did do appropriate bloodwork and only B12 was low, not that supplementing cured me, but that’s something I DO need. So I learned from that experience.

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@wisfloj

Hi, sorry for your health woes. One thing struck me that’ I’d like to comment on – the medical food your Dr.gave you. When I first had PN symptoms the neurologist prescribed Metanx (a medical food requiring an rx) for me. Shortly after starting it my symptoms became much worse-pain, tingling and numbness in arms and legs. So I reduced it to 1x a day and felt better, then stopped it completely. It hit me later that he never even checked my B6, folate etc. before prescribing it! I think I was taking too much B6 which can cause the symptoms I had. Later on my primary care Dr. did do appropriate bloodwork and only B12 was low, not that supplementing cured me, but that’s something I DO need. So I learned from that experience.

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Thank you so much for sharing this! My surgeon didn’t do any bloodwork prior to prescribing this either. Now that you mention it, my only symptom was numbness on the front of my left leg before I started taking that supplement.

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Yeah, my common sense kicked in too late, so I felt compelled to share. And if bloodwork is done while on supplement(s) it won't reflect your true baseline either. This forum, plus my own research has done more for me than that neurologist, 2 appointments and he was ‘fired'.

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Hi to you, I have peripheral neuropathy that developed about 3 weeks after a lumpectomy for breast cancer. I had the lumpectomy about a year and a half ago, but the nerve pain persists. It can be mild to extreme. I have researched nerve damage till I am blue in the face. I have suggestions for you that might sound crazy, but I am telling you this after extensive reading about pain and nerves. I suggest that you walk constantly. It's like telling your brain that there is nothing wrong. So I suggest that every time you feel these nerve type symptoms, you tell yourself that you do not need pain signals anymore. Do this constantly. You need to retrain your brain to stop giving you pain signals, because your surgery was months ago, and you have healed. This talk with yourself can actually change the way your brain works. On you tube, learn about tapping away pain. Just type in tapping for pain. Listen to a brilliant man names Lorimer Moseley on youtube. I happen to use excellent CBD products, so if you ever need them for relaxation and pain, let me know. They work well. It does sound like, somehow, your nerves were impacted by your bunion surgery. Good luck at the neuro doc. I do not think they really think in terms of altering pain messages. But I think it is crucial to tell yourself that you are safe, and no longer need pain messages due to the fact you have healed. Best regards, Lori Renee

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@lorirenee1

Hi to you, I have peripheral neuropathy that developed about 3 weeks after a lumpectomy for breast cancer. I had the lumpectomy about a year and a half ago, but the nerve pain persists. It can be mild to extreme. I have researched nerve damage till I am blue in the face. I have suggestions for you that might sound crazy, but I am telling you this after extensive reading about pain and nerves. I suggest that you walk constantly. It's like telling your brain that there is nothing wrong. So I suggest that every time you feel these nerve type symptoms, you tell yourself that you do not need pain signals anymore. Do this constantly. You need to retrain your brain to stop giving you pain signals, because your surgery was months ago, and you have healed. This talk with yourself can actually change the way your brain works. On you tube, learn about tapping away pain. Just type in tapping for pain. Listen to a brilliant man names Lorimer Moseley on youtube. I happen to use excellent CBD products, so if you ever need them for relaxation and pain, let me know. They work well. It does sound like, somehow, your nerves were impacted by your bunion surgery. Good luck at the neuro doc. I do not think they really think in terms of altering pain messages. But I think it is crucial to tell yourself that you are safe, and no longer need pain messages due to the fact you have healed. Best regards, Lori Renee

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Thank you. I will try these strategies.

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@lorirenee1

Hi to you, I have peripheral neuropathy that developed about 3 weeks after a lumpectomy for breast cancer. I had the lumpectomy about a year and a half ago, but the nerve pain persists. It can be mild to extreme. I have researched nerve damage till I am blue in the face. I have suggestions for you that might sound crazy, but I am telling you this after extensive reading about pain and nerves. I suggest that you walk constantly. It's like telling your brain that there is nothing wrong. So I suggest that every time you feel these nerve type symptoms, you tell yourself that you do not need pain signals anymore. Do this constantly. You need to retrain your brain to stop giving you pain signals, because your surgery was months ago, and you have healed. This talk with yourself can actually change the way your brain works. On you tube, learn about tapping away pain. Just type in tapping for pain. Listen to a brilliant man names Lorimer Moseley on youtube. I happen to use excellent CBD products, so if you ever need them for relaxation and pain, let me know. They work well. It does sound like, somehow, your nerves were impacted by your bunion surgery. Good luck at the neuro doc. I do not think they really think in terms of altering pain messages. But I think it is crucial to tell yourself that you are safe, and no longer need pain messages due to the fact you have healed. Best regards, Lori Renee

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@lorirenee1 I find that walking helps, I think partially because it increases blood flow to my feet. I have just ordered an electric foot massager which is supposed to increase blood flow as well. I do believe there is a mind/body connection so I will also work on sending these healing messages as I am walking. Thank you for the suggestion.

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@klro0001

Thank you. I will try these strategies.

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Yes, these strategies are based on the latest in pain research, and includes nerve symptoms. Please keep us all informed what you learn from the neurologist, and what tests are ordered. Good luck, Lori Renee

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@sunny2

@lorirenee1 I find that walking helps, I think partially because it increases blood flow to my feet. I have just ordered an electric foot massager which is supposed to increase blood flow as well. I do believe there is a mind/body connection so I will also work on sending these healing messages as I am walking. Thank you for the suggestion.

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Very good. Keep up with the walking and healing messages. I also bought a foot massager. I like it, but do not love it, because most of my neuropathy is in my toes, and the machine does not do a great job on the toes. But generally, for the whole foot, it is ok. I would love to try to buy another machine, but they are expensive. Anyway, keep telling your brain to stop sending pain messages. My very best to you….Lori Renee

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@lorirenee1

Very good. Keep up with the walking and healing messages. I also bought a foot massager. I like it, but do not love it, because most of my neuropathy is in my toes, and the machine does not do a great job on the toes. But generally, for the whole foot, it is ok. I would love to try to buy another machine, but they are expensive. Anyway, keep telling your brain to stop sending pain messages. My very best to you….Lori Renee

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Hello…my neurology appointmenot was okay. He did a physical exam and ordered an EMG and NCV test. My appointment isn’t for 3 weeks! That seems like a long time to me but perhaps I am just anxious. He did note that the injury is most likely due to the nerve block and that most people with injuries from nerve blocks recover within a year. However, there are rare instances of permanent damage. So I guess I’ll know if I’m the exception or the rule after the testing. Anyway, thanks for reading this post. I am so thankful for this group.

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