“Cant Stop Wont Stop Keeping My Foot”

“Can’t stop wont stop keeping my foot” and “Can’t stop wont stop growing”.  Those are Nick’s quotes on our way out of Sinai on Thursday after learning his predicted height jumped to 6’6″ and Dr. Standard’s plan for his foot.

For a kid who also learned he would be having surgery Nicholas left pretty happy. I think a lot of his happy was about his foot. I didn’t feel particularly confident in Nick’s foot even though the new insert has helped, he’s actually still had a fair amount of pain and knowing he’s going to be an even bigger guy than we thought just didn’t inspire confidence on my part.

I have to say I did feel differently after hearing Dr. Standards plan which is basically a whole lot of arthrodesis or fusing. It made sense to me when Dr. Standard said it all and I wish I could remember in more detail but I remember he and Nicholas were talking about doing a triple and I think that referenced fusing it in three places.

This surgery will actually have 5 potential separate events going on.

  1. Take out Precice rod.
  2. Put an 8 plate in his femur and adjust the 8 plate currently in his tibia.
  3. Epiphysiodesis on his left femur… the boy has agreed to be shortened some!
  4. Check out his knee and try to figure out what is causing the popping and clicking and pain. If he needs a new ligament he will not do the foot surgery this time. OR if his knee can be put off he will do the foot surgery because Nick feels this is the priority.
  5. Arthrodesis as described above.

Wow. That is a lot isn’t it? Still it’s not all big stuff and Nick wants it done now. The timing of the epiphysiodesis is vital so I don’t think we can wait on that. The precice rod is ready to come out. Nicks still having issues with knock knee so he needs the additional 8 plate. His current 8 plate is bothering him so it needs to be looked at and the general knee and ankle pain are the things Nick most wants addressed.

The good new though is that Nick might not need any more leg lengthening! He might just end up with a 2-3 cm difference and since he has to wear his brace and insert most of the time already that could easily make up the difference. Dr. Standard said we can wait and see and not plan to lengthen again till he is done growing anyway.

On our way to Nicks appointment we used the notes app on my phone to write out questions and then when we got to into a room at RIAO Nick wrote them down on the examining table paper so we would not forget. My plan was to really help him take the lead question wise even if some questions were mine. I don’t know how good I was at letting him lead but it felt like a great visit communication wise.

My most pressing question was his current heigh prediction and current predicted difference at maturity. Right now his discrepancy prediction is 5.8cm. It’s interesting that his height prediction jumped quite a bit but his difference did not. We think it means his right leg has been growing really well post lengthening. Sometimes lengthening can stimulate growth.

My boy is a great grower all around. I’d even say he’s an expert grower. Below you can see our hands traced on top of each other as closely as we could. Even though it’s a little off you can see Nick’s hands are a good deal bigger than mine.

IMG_20160107_151712 (1)

We did other drawing as well. Nick’s really into architecture and design although he still plans to be a chef and restauranteur. I love hearing him talk about his various interests and dreams. He’s currently doing a Young Actors Workshop in our community  for his second time and we planned surgery around his performance.

We also planned surgery for my spring break from school. I am much more concerned about Nick’s academics this year compared to last year so I have written to the person in our school district who handles 504 plans and have requested one for Nicholas. If I don’t receive a reply in a day or so I will call. I am not stopping till he has one. We only have two months to get things in order and of course there are a lot of logistics to figure out but I know we can do it.

While we were waiting at RIAO a young gal came over to ask Nick about the Precice and what it was like. He said the worst part of surgery was these supplements:

Sorry to the parents whose kids will start taking these soon! I don’t mean to be a bummer!!!! 

It was kind of funny that he had this big surgery and months long process of leg lengthening and this was the worst of it. To be fair one of the 3 daily pills was like the worst big vitamin you can imagine. Drinking a can of seltzer to take them helped but apparently they made a lasting impression.  I am sure they helped with his amazing bone formation and who knows maybe they contributed to his “can’t stop wont stop growing” overall.


5 thoughts on ““Cant Stop Wont Stop Keeping My Foot””

  1. Did Dr. Standard comment on his weight bearing status after surgery? For ankle fusion I wasn’t allowed any weight bearing on that foot for a couple months. My rehab dr. told me to expect that so I wasn’t surprised when it happened. I don’t think it really matters how many cuts there are in ankle fusion, in terms of pain. I had been led to beileve ankle surgery was more painful than I experienced. The hardest part was when my ankle got infected and Dr. Nelson put me back in the hospital for IV antibiotics. Even that wasn’t too bad the first couple days.
    I’m older than Nick so it’s not likely he will have that problem.
    Its funny that you wrote your questions on the table paper. One time Dr. Nelson drew something for me on the table paper.
    How long is spring break? One or two weeks?
    Will his ankle be put in a cast?
    My ankle is, now, so much less painful since the bones aren’t rubbing against each other. My Fh foot is still very small, especially considering the size of the person it’s holding up :-).


    1. Ankle will be in a cast for six weeks. Having his left leg have the surgery to make him shorter will be two weeks of not being on either leg. That will be hard! But basically I think within a couple months he should be back not normal. I worry about the knee derailing the foot plans but we’ll see. It’s nice to hear it wasn’t as painful as you expected. He’ll be fusing Nick with screws and I wonder if they will need to be removed. I have to remember to ask that. My spring break is only one week and then Nick has a week off about a week and a half after surgery so it will lessen his time missed. I think Nick’s foot will be quite small compared to the person hit holds… it is already. I remember Dr. Standard once saying smaller is actually better for a stiff foot…:)


  2. Glad to hear you have a good game plan in place 🙂 6’6″ is a wow, I think Billy is done now at 5’3″… Fingers crossed the knee cooperates!


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