Thursday, March 12, 2015

Toenail Removal

This morning I had my toenail removed, and it is not an experience I hope to repeat...ever.

Now, the appointment and removal was very routine. Nothing abnormal occurred during the procedure, but I never want to have to have another toenail removed ever in my life. Two night ago I was crying in anticipation. I've been diabetic since I was 2, so I've heard quite a few times during my life to take care of my feet. Now, because of nothing diabetes related I'm having issues with my feet and it scares me. What if I get an infection during the healing process and I have to have my toe amputated?

So, with those thoughts floating around in my head, I had my appointment this morning. We dropped Gus off at school, then Jon, Lucy and I headed to the doc's office. Two residents came in, both of which I'd seen before during my previous appointments, and looked at my toe. The "lead" resident, mentioned that it looked worse than when he had seen it last and that I should hopefully feel better after the nail is removed. Little did he know that I won't feel better until after my toe is healed and I see that the new nail is starting to grow in!

Originally the resident was going to do the removal, but it turns out that the doc wanted to do it himself to make sure that there wasn't any extra tissue growth beneath the nail/skin that needed to be removed. I felt a huge wave of relief at that. Not that residents aren't good doctors, but more veteran docs have seen more in their careers and I was glad to have that experience working on my feet.

So, the resident administered the lidocaine in three separate injections. It hurt, I'm not going to lie. There was definitely a pinch, and definitely a burn, but I just kept my eyes closed, tried to relax and tried to pretend I wasn't about to have a part of my body ripped off.

After a few minutes to make sure my toe was completely numb, the doc and resident came in to begin the procedure. I'm really glad Lucy was there. I had her on my lap and was able to hold her, focus on something else, but also use her body to shield my foot so that I couldn't see what they were doing. As I write this, I still haven't taken the bandage off to see what my toe actually looks like without its nail. Jon was happy to watch the entire thing and thought it was so cool. No, thank you!

Jon told me that, basically, my nail was growing, but the new growth wasn't advancing the existing nail and was curling in on itself beneath my skin. So, unless there was some divine intervention, my toe would not have healed on its own, and the temporary removal of my nail was the best course of treatment.

My toe starting becoming painful on the drive home so not even 30 minutes after the lidocaine was administered, so that sucked, and my toe has been very painful, sometimes throbbing all day. I was supposed to keep it elevated and to limit my activity for at least 6 hours after the removal, but that hasn't been working out too well. With Gus it's fine, but Lucy doesn't understand that I'm just supposed to plop on the couch and rest. So, I'm trying to rest as much as I can, but it's not as much as I hoped.