Nov 20, 2018 / Clubfoot
Share Your Story: Pursuing My Dreams
Blog written by Jasmine, age 17 of Garland.
Hi everyone! I’m Jasmine, a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children in the complex adolescent foot and ankle clinic. My journey started around August 2013, when I began to notice an aching pain in my left foot. As an athlete, I never thought anything of the pain, other than just soreness. As the pain progressed, my parents decided to take me to an orthopedic surgeon. After several visits with the doctor, which resulted without a diagnosis, plus the idea that I was “just imagining the pain,” I gave up hope in finding relief.
In July 2016, at my annual physical, my parents mentioned that I was still experiencing agonizing foot pain. My doctor then referred me to Scottish Rite Hospital, with the hope of finding some answers. As a patient who had previously had my concerns dismissed, I was terrified of hospitals and doctors. My first appointment was with Dr. Podeszwa, where I was diagnosed with bilateral flat feet and accessory navicular. Flat feet is a condition where the arches of my foot were collapsed and accessory navicular is where I have an extra bone on the inside of my foot. Dr.Podeszwa sent me to be fitted for custom orthotics and also referred me to the complex adolescent foot and ankle clinic with Dr. Riccio and Dr. Zide.
I wore the custom orthotics for a while, but they were not successful and at this point it looked like surgery was my next option. During this time, other aspects of my life were changing due to the constant pain I was experiencing. I stopped hanging out with friends because I was always thinking about my foot pain. Also, the thought of quitting taekwondo, a sport I loved, was becoming more and more present.
Dr. Riccio and Dr. Zide came up with a plan to remove my accessory navicular and reconstruct my foot to form an arch. I had my first surgery on my left foot in March 2017. After the surgery, I stayed in the hospital overnight and was discharged the next day. I was in a splint for two weeks, a cast for six weeks, a boot for four weeks and before I knew it, was walking with normal shoes. Like any surgery, recovery is far from easy, but thanks to the wonderful care I received at Scottish Rite Hospital, it was so much better.
In June of 2018, I had the exact same surgical reconstruction performed on my right foot. Since I had already undergone this same surgery on my left foot, the second surgery was a breeze. My recovery on my right foot was picturesque. It was as easy and simple as recovering from surgery could be. Currently, I am five months post-op from my second surgery and I can say that I am feeling great!
MY NUMBER ONE PIECE OF ADVICE IS TO STAY POSITIVE! ALWAYS KNOW THAT YOU CAN GET THROUGH ANYTHING AND THAT YOU DON'T HAVE TO DO IT ALONE.Everyone is rooting for you to have a successful and smooth road towards recovery, including your family, friends and especially the people at the hospital. Recovery isn’t always easy, but the end result will always be worth it! My surgery gave me back my life. Because of Dr. Riccio, Dr. Zide and their staff, I can do whatever I want without having to worry about pain!
Scottish Rite Hospital means hope and happiness to me. Because of my experience here, I want to become an orthopedic surgeon. My dream is to give patients hope and “give children back their childhood,” just like Dr. Riccio and Dr. Zide have done for me.
I also had the opportunity to participate in the Perry Initiative Program, which gave me the opportunity to take a closer look into orthopedics. Through this program, I was able to meet Dr. McIntosh. She has encouraged me to pursue my dream of becoming an orthopedic surgeon. I have been able to shadow Dr. McIntosh, Dr.Riccio and Dr.Zide in each of their clinics.