Plastic Surgery/mole removed


I had a mole removed from the arch of my foot by my dermatologist on Monday.  I have about 5 stitches.  I am having a lot of difficulty walking...can not put any pressure on the incision area.  I can only walk on my toes and sometimes a little on the side of my foot..which causes discomfort in those areas after awhile.  Should I even be walking on this foot?  He said I could but the discomfort is making it impossible and I am afraid of ripping out the stitches.  If I sit for a long period of time it takes awhile before I can take my first step as my whole foot gets cramped. I hate to be a baby and don't want to call and complain but I am worried of doing more harm then good.  Thought I would get your advice before making the call.  Thanks in advance!

from Dr. Alan Engler

Hi Becky,

You should definitely contact your dermatologist to let him know what's going on.  He may want to take a look at you or, depending on exactly what was done (ie how extensive) he may feel that this is fairly typical and that it can wait for you next scheduled visit.

In general, the foot is a particularly difficult region to recover from.  Excisions that would be barely noticeable within a week when performed on the abdomen or arm remain highly symptomatic even several weeks later when done on the feet.  That has to do both with the dependent nature of the surgical site (it's low down, which enhances the swelling - they always say to elevate the area that's been operated on and, if that's the foot, that makes you basically unable to function normally) and that it's such tight skin that there is little room to distribute the tension following the closure.

My guess is that this will be considered fairly normal - even if you were not fully aware of what to anticipate post-operatively but, to be sure, you should contact your doctor.

I hope that this helps and good luck,

Dr. Alan Engler
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Alan M. Engler, MD, FACS


Dr. Engler has answered over 6500 questions on social media sites, including over 3500 on AllExperts alone. His expertise includes breast surgery (breast enlargement with implants, breast reduction, breast lifts), liposuction, eyelid surgery, tummy tucks, facelifts, lipomas, skin cancers, cysts, etc. Dr. Engler has been listed as one New York`s Top Doctors, and as "One of the World's Most Famous Aesthetic Surgeons" (Aesthetic Surgery, TASCHEN Books, Angelika Taschen, Editor). He is the author of 4 books, including "BodySculpture" (a best-selling plastic surgery book on breast surgery, liposuction and tummy tucks), "EyeScapes" (Plastic Surgery of the Eyelids), "Restylane," and "The Slim Book of Liposuction." Dr. Engler has two US Patents for surgical instruments that he's designed, and has appeared on numerous television shows, including The Tyra Banks Show, The Ricki Lake Show (four times), the Dr. Keith Ablow Show and Jerseylicious. Videos of his appearances are available on YouTube (search for "DR. ENGLER"), and his discussion of breast implants, also on YouTube is "How to Choose a Breast Implant." His website is Follow Dr. Engler: @AlanEnglerMD


Dr. Alan Engler is a board-certified plastic surgeon in New York and the author of BodySculpture - Plastic Surgery of the Body for Men and Women (ISBN 0966382749) one of the top-selling plastic surgery books on,, as well as EyeScapes - Plastic Surgery of the Eyelids.

Dr. Engler graduated from Yale University (BA, Russian Studies) and the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (MD). He did his residency training in General Surgery and, after that, Plastic Surgery, at the Montefiore Medical Center in New York. He is on the faculty of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York in the Departments of both Surgery (Plastic Surgery) and Medicine (Dermatology), and is a Special Lecturer in the Department of Dermatology at Columbia University in New York. He has admitting privileges at Beth Israel Medical Center and Montefiore Medical Center, both in New York.

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