Local Triathlete Gets Back on Her Feet After a Big Toe Surgery with Dr. McAlister - Dr. Jeffrey E McAlister
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patient who had toe fusion surgery for toe pain

Local Triathlete Gets Back on Her Feet After a Big Toe Surgery with Dr. McAlister

Laura Basey is a local Phoenix triathlete, who enjoys participating in triathlons alongside her husband. However, Laura’s ability to participate in the sport she loves was placed on hold when she began to experience pain in her big toe joint while running. This pain caused Laura to seek podiatric care from Dr. Jeffrey E. McAlister, a fellowship-trained foot and ankle surgeon, specializing in sports medicine and arthritis. Laura ultimately underwent a great toe (big toe) fusion surgical correction.

Laura’s Story Prior to a Big Toe Fusion Diagnosis 

In September of 2018, Laura began to experience a sharp, stabbing pain in her big toe joint while training for the running portion of a scheduled triathlon race. The race was to take place in October. The pain in her toe became so intense that she began to have difficulty walking and running. Laura was eager to compete in the race alongside her friends. Unfortunately, she had to drop out at the last minute.  

“I was supposed to run 13 miles and I was worried that I would have to give up in the middle of the race and walk all the way back to the beginning due to pain, shared Laura.   

A few months later and still disappointed about the race, Laura took her friend’s recommendation and scheduled an appointment with Dr. McAlister. 

Toe Pain Diagnosis  

Upon examining Laura’s foot, Dr. McAlister could feel loose bones in her toe and immediately knew that there was a significant problem.  

“He told me that the cause of my pain was likely foot arthritis linked to years of running,” said Laura. “Dr. McAlister was very up-front and honest and told me that I had two options: I could either have a great toe fusion surgery, but only be able to run up to six miles or not have surgery and continue to live in pain.”  

Laura said the decision to have surgery was a no-brainer for her as she wanted to keep running and alleviate her pain.  

Laura’s Toe Fusion Surgery & Speedy Recovery 

Laura had a successful big toe fusion surgical correction in February at Surgcenter Camelback, where she received excellent care. Following surgery, she was placed in bandages for two weeks and was unable to bear weight on her foot before she was placed in a walking boot. Laura wore a boot for one month and is now currently able to walk with no pain. She also plans to return to running this summer! 

Laura’s Patient Experience with Dr. McAlister 

Laura is very thankful for the care she received from Dr. McAlister and his staff at Arcadia Orthopedics and Sports Medicine. “Dr. McAlister is excellent at listening to his patients and explaining their treatment options, she said.   

In addition, Laura shared that she had an accident and fell off a ladder just days before her scheduled appointment to have her boot removed. As a result, she ended up breaking her kneecap and arm late on a Friday afternoon. She stated, “Dr. McAlister not only went above and beyond when caring for my foot, but when I contacted him on that Sunday to cancel my upcoming appointment, he immediately contacted my orthopedic knee doctor.  Dr. McAlister triaged her accident to allow the orthopedic doctor to care for those injuries,” she shared.  “I was so stressed and he took that stress away by taking that first step on my behalf!”  

Laura says she’d recommend Dr. McAlister to anyone in need of a foot and ankle doctor. I especially recommend him to all of my athletic friends as he is a triathlete himself,” Laura added. “Thank you for going the extra mile with my care, Dr. McAlister!” 

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