I’ve known Dr. Stewart for over 10 years and worked with him Dr. Stewart professionally for several years in a large wound care center and assisted him in some of his clinical research in his office. He also was my surgeon for two foot surgeries several years ago. I had a bunionectomy and repair of a hammer toe. All went well, and both surgeries were successful.
On May 8, 2018 I was leaving my son’s house and twisted my left ankle when I missed a step. The pain was excruciating and my foot swelled to twice its size. As a nurse I knew to apply compression, elevate, and ice as soon as I got home. The next morning Dr. Stewart saw me in his office. My x-rays were negative for any fractures ; however, my foot and ankle were so swollen and painful it was difficult for Dr. Stewart to do a complete exam of the flexion, extension and rotation of my ankle. He informed me that I had a severe sprain with ligament and tendon damage. He was very clear that the injury could take at least 3 months to heal. As an avid gardener and still working as a wound care nurse, I was sick to hear this bad news.
He also told me that if the condition did not improve with conservative care that I could possibly require surgery. My initial treatment plan consisted of a compression stocking, walking boot, off-loading the foot with crutches, ice for twenty minutes every hour for the first two weeks. Oh my, not my way to start the summer.
I returned to Dr. Stewart’s office the following week miserable. He suggested adding therapeutic laser treatments as an adjunctive modality to decrease pain, swelling, and inflammation, and to promote healing. As a wound care nurse I totally understood the importance of decreasing inflammation in order for an injury to heal. The laser treatments consisted of 10 sessions, which were about 13 minutes each over the next two weeks. Dr. Stewart did say that many of his patients made a faster recover with the laser treatments, but there was no guarantee. I started the laser treatments right away and I must say that after the second treatment my foot was significantly in less pain. By the time the 10 treatments were completed, my ankle was pain-free. I still continued to off-load with crutches, wear the walking boot, compression stocking and even iced several times daily. By June 1st
Dr. Stewart recommended placing me in an ankle brace to wear inside my tennis shoe and to continue to wear the compression stocking and ice to control any swelling. On my return visit June 18th, I was released. My ankle had full flexion, extension, and rotation with out pain. I am back to gardening, kayaking, hiking and doing all the things that I love to do with a fully healed ankle. As a side note, I had a very similar injury to my right ankle many years ago and ended up in a walking boot for nine months. Back then I was just put in a walking boot with no other modalities, not even crutches. In comparison Dr. Stewart’s aggressive conservation therapy really did repair my ankle.
I can’t thank Dr. Stewart and his staff enough for their patience and care in getting me back on my feet in less than one month for an injury that generally takes 3 months to heal . I continue to refer many other patients and friends to Dr. Stewart especially since my recent ankle injury. The laser treatments really did decrease pain and inflammation, thus getting me back on my feet faster than we initially thought.
Thank you again Dr. Stewart and Timonium Foot and Ankle Center.
* Results may vary from person to person