Hard-working feet can get badly damaged and aligned improperly in the long term, commonly leading to foot conditions like bunions. Susan, a greenhouse associate who had spent decades on her feet, lived with the pain and limitation this disorder caused for years.
Throughout her life, other doctors had told Susan that a corrective procedure for bunions was simply “cosmetic,” but other treatments were never enough to alleviate her symptoms. That’s why Susan took further action and sought out Dr. William Braaksma, the region’s only fellowship-trained foot and ankle orthopedic surgeon.
Dr. Braaksma came highly recommended to Susan by a relative of hers, and she visited Orthopedic Associates of Port Huron to get started on a treatment that would finally work for her. There, she met with Dr. Braaksma, who recommended the Lapiplasty 3D Bunion Correction Procedure for a permanent solution to the unstable joint in her foot.
Dr. Braaksma shortly went on to prepare plans for Susan’s procedure. “He’s wonderful,” says Susan, who underwent her procedure December 28. “Dr. Braaksma is very particular and precise with measurements and instruments and everything, and that’s exactly what you want in a surgeon.”
During her recovery, Susan says, “I did everything I was told. They told me to listen to the doctor and I did exactly what he said. I went to my physical therapy, I practiced at home, and I even wiggled my toes a lot like the doctor said to help with the nerves and blood vessels.” Susan understood the important role she played in her own successful recovery, adding that, “I didn’t even use all my pain pills because I didn’t need them anymore.”
Today, Susan says she’s glad about choosing Dr. Braaksma and undergoing the procedure and rehabilitation, and she’s pleased with the overall results. “I call it my mannequin foot; it’s a beautiful foot,” Susan says, “I show everybody my X-rays and my foot.”
Only a little more than six months after her procedure, Susan says, “It’s definitely easier to stand on it.” She now routinely takes mile-long walks around a nearby lake and is enjoying the summer weather. Susan’s also excited about her ability to broaden her footwear choices.
“I’ve got a good-looking foot, and I can buy shoes now! I can wear any kind of shoes and also walk in them,” Susan explains. “For years I wasn’t able to get regular shoes because of the bunion—they had to be wide, but now I can.”