I am very happy to e able to write this review of the surgery and treatment I received at the Coeur D’Alene Foot and ankle Clinic and Dr. Orlando Nunez.
Having spent at least three months researching minimally invasive bunion surgery before deciding to go ahead with it at CDFA, I feel that any helpful information put out there for potential patients like myself is of immeasurable value.
I had many fears, concerns and questions about the surgery even after deciding on having it done at CDFA. I communicated via e mail and telephone with the wonderful staff – Laneil and Michelle – for a few months prior to the surgery, and they punctually and thoroubghly answered every question and concern I had with detailed diagrams, photographs, and explanations.
We planned the surgery quite a bit in advance, as I was flying out from New York.
(For anyone flying in to have the surgery from out of town – there is an Ameritel Inn and shopping center right next door which makes the stay very comfortable and easy to manage).
I had my first appointment with Dr. Nunez on a Wednesday, during which he examined my feet and did x/rays etc. We discussed my options, he answered my redundant questions, I expressed my continued concerns – and then feeling quite confident and reassured that everything was going to be much less traumatic than I had imagined, I went off to my hotel for an evening of rest before the “big day”. The following morning I arrived for the surgery where Dr. Nunez’ surgical nurse, Rita, met me and prepped my for the procedure. She was wonderful! I felt relaxed and in great hands. Dr Nunez came in to great me shortly thereafter, I was given a mild sedative and they began their work on my left foot. (I had decided to do one at a time so as to be walking with one surgical boot at a time). They injected the local anesthetic into my foot and began the procedure which to my surprise just flew by as I chatted with Rita. I felt no pain at all – maybe just a bit of pressure or tugging from my foot being handled. They bandaged my foot, fitted me with a post surgical boot, gave me an antibiotic and painkiller (which I did not wind up needing)and I was done. I walked out of the office and went and did some grocery shopping, all the while sort of wondering when I would start feeling pain. My foot was sore if I tried to stand on it without the boot, but with the boot, it was surprisingly fine.
They called me that evening to check in on me and then asked me to come in the next day so that Dr. Nunez could check my foot and change the dressing.
Friday morning I had my dressing changed and then had a pretty normal weekend – as normal as one can have in a surgical boot – and then went for my final post-op check up on Monday morning, as my flight back to New York was that afternoon.
Everything was fine, and my unbandaged foot didn’t even look particularly traumatized, which made me very happy as one of my primary concerns was about scarring. I am one of those bunion patients that didn’t have pain, but hated the look of the bunions – so that my surgery was really for cosmetic purposes.
I had my right foot done exactly one month later and now as I am writing this, I am 15 weeks post surgery on my left foot and 11 weeks on my right.
I was out of my boot and into a birkenstock sandal or roomy running shoe at 4 weeks post surgery. At this time I was able to walk quite normally and even start back with some squats and other non-foot-bending exercises. At about 6 weeks I was able to bend my forefoot more completely and start soft lunges etc.
There was still a small amount of swelling so that the main issue with shoes at this point was finding a large shoe with support that would go on and off easily and accommodate my temporarily bigger feet. At about 9 weeks, I was able to start back into my normal aerobic exercise routine with no trouble or residual stiffness. At this point the incision marks are barely visible, in fact some are completely gone. My feet look great and although I can still see a slight amount of swelling, I can tell that it is steadily going down as time passes. I could’nt be happier with the results.
Dr Nunez is one of the warmest, most patient and gentle doctors that I have ever come across. He takes the time to explain any aspect of the procedure to you and does not take the patients’ concerns lightly. I cannot recommend him more highly – in fact – I am trying to convince him to open a practice in NYC!
All of my research on bunion surgery has most certainly paid off as it lead me to Dr. Nunez and consequently – great results! I only hope that this summary of my experience will help anyone out there considering bunion surgery. Information is key.
Thank you Dr Nunez and staff.
Sincerely, Juliana Merz