Bunion Surgery is an option when conservative treatment such as shoe modifications and orthotics have failed to give any relief of pain. Bunion surgery procedures are performed based on the severity of the bunion, patient’s age, weight, strength of bone, and level of activity. The chosen procedure also has an impact on the recovery period including the protective device needed, weight-bearing status, and ability to return to normal activities. Prior to surgery, our foot doctors will obtain digital x-rays in the Lake Oconee office and will discuss the procedure that would be optimal for your bunion. Bunion surgery generally takes about an hour to complete under IV sedation and takes place in an out patient setting. Da Vinci Foot & Ankle currently performs bunion surgery at St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital in Greensboro, Ga. Due to the anesthesia, patients are not permitted to eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery and are not permitted to drive them self home after the surgery. Lastly, a prescription for pain medicine will be given for comfort after the procedure.
As laser surgery is not available for bunion surgery, a small incision is made on the side of the foot resulting in a minor scar. The surgery typically involves shaving down the prominent “bump,” followed by making a cut in the bone (metatarsal) and positioning it back into a natural position. The bone is stabilized with a screw that will stay in permanently, unless it becomes bothersome in the future, for which it can be removed. After bunion surgery, a post-operative block is administered around the surgical site to offer numbness and a painless recovery for the return home. Even thought the foot may stay numb until the for up to 2 days after surgery, it is recommend that pain medication and an anti-inflammatory are initiated the same day of surgery. It is important to ice and elevate the foot afterwards and in addition to generally resting, as this will aid in a smooth recovery.
After Bunion Surgery
The post-operative course for this surgery includes a sterile dressing and a walking boot. The dressing is not to be changed or tampered with until seen by the doctor 1 week after surgery. Patients are permitted to walk on the operative foot as instructed by your surgeon. Depending on surgeon preference, patients will be transitioned back to a supportive athletic shoe as tolerated typically one week after the surgery. In general it is advised to decrease or modify your activities after surgery as post-operative pain and swelling is correlated to patient activities. Aside from our extensive surgical training, one thing that also separates Da Vinci Foot & Ankle from the competition is that we treat all of our surgical patients with MLS laser therapy immediately after surgery. This additional care enhances tissue healing, reduce swelling and pain, and ultimately speeds up patients recovery time.