A bunion is characterized by a swelling due to the enlargement of the bone or tissue at the base of the big toe. The big toe might even turn towards the second toe. This write-up provides information on the surgical treatment of this foot condition.
A bunion is a foot condition that is characterized by the enlargement of tissues or bone at the metatarsophalangeal joint, which is the joint located at the base of the big toe. Wearing ill-fitting shoes, especially the ones that have a narrow toe box, could be a contributing factor for swelling and inflammation. If this foot problem is not addressed in its early stages, the hallus (big toe) might get angled towards the second toe. Foot pain that worsens while walking is a common symptom of this condition. In some cases, doctors might suggest the patient to undergo a bunion surgery to correct this deformity.
The surgical procedures that might be employed for the treatment of this condition include arthrodesis, resection arthroplasty, exostectomy, and osteotomy. Surgery might also involve the realignment of the tendons and ligaments surrounding the big toe joint.
◘ Arthrodesis is recoemmnded, if the patient is experiencing severe pain. This procedure involves the surgical removal of the part of the joint damaged due to the bunion. Once the damaged joint surfaces are removed, wires, screws, or plates are inserted in order to hold the joint together during the healing period.
◘ Exostectomy is another procedure which involves the removal of the bunion. Since it doesn’t address the aspect of angulation of the big toe towards the second toe, it is not considered to be an effective treatment.
◘ Resection arthroplasty involves the removal of damaged portion of the joint, followed by reshaping of the bones of the metatarsal joint and the big toe.
◘ Osteotomy involves the removal of a small wedge of bone from the big toe through surgical cutting. It also involves the realignment of the joint.
The time taken by the patient to recover will vary, depending on the type of surgery procedure employed. In case of severe bunions, one might take about six to twelve months to recover completely. This surgery may cost you around USD 4000. The cost could vary, depending on the procedure employed. Follow the advice of your doctor in order to speed up the recovery process, and take all possible precautions to prevent such structural foot deformities to resurface in future.
Since people affected by arthritis are more likely to develop such deformities, they must take care to avoid such foot problems.
◘ First of all, wear shoes that fit you well. It would be best to purchase shoes with a wide toe box. This will help avoid inflammation of the soft tissues and bone due to constant rubbing against this joint.
◘ In mild cases, the use of bunion splints will prove beneficial.
◘ You can place felt or foam pads to protect the bunion, or use spacers to separate the first and second toes.
Though bunions might become a cause of cosmetic concern for some, surgery is usually recommended when the pain is intense and is affecting your ability to perform routine activities to a great extent. Do consult an orthopedic surgeon, if you have painful, bony swelling on the base of your big toe.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.