What to Expect From Bunion Surgery

A bunion is a bump located at the base of the big toe. Most of the time, bunions don’t cause any problems, but as the bunion gets bigger, it could get irritated and can cause mild to severe pain.

Bunions pain can be treated by non-surgical means by using orthotics and shifting to shoes with wide toe boxes. If conservative treatments no longer provide relief, surgery is recommended.

Minimally invasive surgery is the preferred surgical technique in treating bunions. It requires a very small incision, about 5mm, which when healed leaves a barely visible scar. Also, minimally invasive bunion surgery involves very little pain and swelling, allowing the patient to walk the following day.

what to expect after bunion surgery
What Is Done During Surgery?

First, the foot is numbed to alleviate pain during the whole procedure. An anesthesiologist will always be on your side to make sure you are comfortable.

Then the foot is cleaned, sterilized and draped. A 5mm incision is done below the bunion to expose the first metatarsal bone. Using an osteotome, which is an instrument that looks very similar to a chisel, the bone is cut across. A bone saw is not used since the saw produces heat and could kill bone cells which in turn delays bone healing. Once the bone is cut, the big toe and joint are aligned in accordance with the other structures of the feet.  Then a pin is placed to immobilize the joint for proper bone healing.

After surgery, you will be transferred to the recovery room for a few hours and then sent home. Bunion surgery is an OPD or out-patient procedure, which means you will be sent home on the same day after surgery. Home medications are given for pain and antibiotics to prevent infection.

Are You Able To Walk After Bunion Surgery?

Yes, most patients can walk after bunion surgery and it is recommended to walk as soon as possible after the procedure. This is to encourage blood circulation to the wounds and bone for faster recovery. Patients can walk a day after surgery with a special boot using the balls of their feet.

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no scar bunion surgery

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