Foot surgery…then and now

Back in the 80s, foot surgery was primitive compared with today and people, especially those with painful bunions, put their faith in orthopaedic surgeons and podiatrists to fix their distorted toes. A story, published on health.usnews.com last year, by a lady who had two such surgeries performed on her bunions in the 80s might make one question how anyone could take such a leap of faith.

Although the lady blamed a certain pair of sling-back shoes she once wore, it is more likely she inherited the condition. As her big toes drifted out toward the second toe, pushing the big toe joint inwards toward the mid-line of her body, her decision to wear inappropriate shoes probably just worsened an existing condition. High-heeled, pointy-toed or slip-on shoes tend to increase the pressure on the toes and squeeze the toes together causing pain.

Foot Surgery Back Then

Before long, the pain became unbearable and she sought help from an orthopaedic foot surgeon. The resulting operation, first on one foot and 18 months’ later on the other foot, caused burning, throbbing pain afterward and a return to the hospital for two nights. After a couple of weeks of hobbling around on crutches, she was able to return to work and six weeks’ later she was able to wear regular shoes again.

Fast-forward to today when some podiatrists, like Sheldon H. Nadal, D.P.M. who is based in Toronto, have been practicing minimally invasive foot surgery for 30 years and you’ll be relieved to know that the scenario just described is not one you have to endure.

Foot Surgery Today

Minimally invasive foot surgery is performed with special instruments that allow highly skilled practitioners to work through tiny openings in the skin. Compared with conventional surgery, these procedures result in less pain and less disability because there is less soft tissue trauma, meaning the patient will experience a quicker recovery.

Using local anaesthetic, experienced podiatrists can treat hammer toes, bone spurs, metatarsal pain, corns, calluses and ingrown toenails as well as bunions with minimally invasive foot surgery. Each procedure is carried out as a day case and the patient can walk immediately afterward in a special sandal. Over-the-counter pain relief should suffice and complications are rare.

 

Resources:

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/patient-advice/articles/2015/07/10/bunion-blues-one-womans-experience-with-foot-surgery

http://www.podiatrytoday.com/emerging-insights-minimally-invasive-hallux-valgus-correction

http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/1884859-minimally-invasive-bunion-surgery-no-broken-bones-quick-recovery/