I have a large rheumatoid nodule on the side of my foot. It is very painful and weeping a bit. Would removal be an option?I have a large rheumatoid nodule on the side of my foot. It is very painful and weeping a bit. Would removal be an option?

I have been undergoing treatment (IV antibiotics) for a month for the rheumatoid nodule on my left foot, but it is still very painful at times and continues to have a small amount of discharge. In 2012 I had a very similar nodule on my right foot and the infection got into my bloodstream and destroyed my heart valve. I had open heart surgery in October 2012 and have been doing great until the nodule on my left foot became infected. I am worried the same thing might happen so I would like to have it removed. But would this cause more problems than I now have? How safe is this surgery?

Answers from our Doctors

tshaver's picture
Dr. Timothy S. Shaver says:

While I don't routinely recommend surgical removal of rheumatoid nodules, as they typically recur, your situation is different. When a nodule is in a position to cause pain or to result in other complications (such as infection), removal is prudent, particularly so with your history. This is a relatively safe procedure and one that I believe entails lower risks to you than continuing on your present course. You will need to be carefully supervised postoperatively to prevent wound infection, but as long as this takes place, I would say the trade-off is favorable to proceed with surgical removal.

Answered on: Tuesday, July 22, 2014 - 20:45


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