What is a bunion?
A bunion (also called a Hallux Valgus) is a bump on the bone, which is associated with your toe pointing outwards. Bunions can be hereditary, common in women and tight/ill fitting shoes are frequently blamed for bunions.
Bunions are frequently associated with pain and difficulty in shoe wear, and some times the big toe can push and cause problems in the 2nd toe.
What treatments are available for bunions?
Comfortable wider fitting shoe wear is the recommended non operative treatment. If that fails then conventional and minimally invasive surgery is an option.
Conventional surgery usually requires 6 – 8 cm incision, osteotomy (cutting) of bone and fixation with screws / staples.
Minimal incision surgery usually requires 2 – 3 stab incisions, osteotomy (cutting) of bone and fixation with screws / staples. Minimally invasive surgery for bunions is a relatively new procedure, which means it is not as well established as open surgery procedure. This procedure utilises multiple tiny incisions, where no stitching is required.
The main advantages of this procedure are
• Small incisions that don’t require stitches
• Minimal / almost invisible scarring
• Less pain
• Early recovery from surgery
However, bone healing will take similar a time as conventional surgery and therefore restriction relating to bone healing will remain unchanged.
Although limited data is available, available data suggests that it is a safe procedure and possibly as safe as conventional surgery. The National institute of clinical excellence (NICE) has issued a guideline for you to read before making any final decision.
After the operation
You would normally go home the same day walking on special shoes, which you will be wearing for 6 weeks. You will be provided with pain killers. Although the risk of deep vein thrombosis (blood clot) is minimal you should always be vigilant. You will be seen 2 weeks after in the outpatient clinic for your first review.
For further information or to arrange an appointment with one of our Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeons call 01482 672400/444
Surgeons who specialise in Keyhole Bunion Surgery