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What is Bunion Surgery?
Bunion surgery is a surgical procedure to remove painful deformed bones known as bunions from the foot and big toe. Bunion surgery is performed when other non-surgical treatments are unsuccessful.
How is Bunion Surgery Performed?
How to Prepare for Bunion Surgery?
- An incision is made on the toe joint and bones.
- The deformed bones and joint are then repaired using screws, pins, and plates to fix the bones in place.
- The following repairs may be performed during a bunion surgery:
- Shortening or elongating certain ligaments and tendons
- Arthrodesis, which is the removal of the damaged portion of the joint and holding the joint together using screws, wires and plates.
- Exostectomy or bunionectomy, which is the removal of the bulging bone of the foot know as the metatarsal head.
- Realignment of ligaments around the joint of the big toe
- Metatarsal osteotomy, which is the removal of the small bone wedge from the foot
- Phalangeal osteotomy, which is the removal of the small bone wedge from the toe
- Resection arthroplasty that involves reshaping of the big toe and metatarsal bones at the metatarsophalangeal joint
- Lapidus procedure, which is the fusion of the metatarsal bone and mid-foot joint
- Insertion of implants on joints
Duration of procedure/surgery:
- The doctor should be informed about any medication that the patient is taking with or without a prescription. These may include supplements or herbs or drugs.
- Certain medication that the patient is taking may be stopped two weeks before the surgery.
- The doctor should be informed if the patient has any ailments or medical conditions.
- The doctor should be informed if the patient has been drinking more than 2 drinks of alcohol per day.
- The patient must stop smoking to ensure a quick recovery.
- The patient may be required to learn some exercises from a physical therapist before the surgery. The patient may also need to learn how to use crutches.
1 to 2 hours
Bunion surgery is usually done as an outpatient procedure.
- The stitches will be removed after 1 to 3 weeks.
- Pins protruding from the foot will be taken out in 4 to 6 weeks.
- The patient may take 5 to 6 weeks to recover.
- Light activities can be resumed in 6 to 8 weeks.
- It may take a year for the foot to completely heal. This depends on how much tissue and bone is affected.
- Blood clotting
- Reappearance of the bunion
- Loss of sensation, tingling or burning sensation in the toe due the nerve damages
- Shortening of the big toe
- Stiffness at the joint of the big toe
- Swelling and pain
- Avascular necrosis
- Formation of a callus on the foot soles
- Allergic reaction to medication
- Breathing difficulty
- The foot should be covered and the stitches should be kept dry while the patient is showering or bathing.
- The patient may be required to wear walking casts and special shoes after the surgery for 5 to 8 weeks.
- The patient should not put weight on the foot for 6 to 8 weeks.
- The doctor will inform the patient about the amount of weight the foot should bear during recovery.
Learn more about Bunion surgery