Getting a bunion removed from your foot can relieve a lot of pain and make walking, standing, and running much more comfortable. Bunions are pretty common as you get older, but depending on the severity of the bunion, you may never need to deal with them at all. If you are having trouble with a bunion, a visit to the podiatrist for an evaluation is a good idea.
A bunion is a bony growth that forms on the base of the big toe. It causes the toe to start pointing in towards the other toes and can become very painful over time. Bunions can be fixed with surgery, and for minor cases, the bunion can be padded to reduce the pain. While you might be able to avoid the surgery for a long time, the condition can become so painful that walking becomes difficult. If this happens, the only option may be bunion surgery.
Prepare for the Surgery
When you decide to go forward with bunion surgery, talk to the surgeon about the anesthetic used for the surgery. Some doctors prefer to use a local nerve block and keep the patient awake during the procedure while others may want to put the patient to sleep for the procedure. If you have a preference, you need to let the doctor know ahead of time.
Once you arrive at the hospital for your surgery, a nurse will have you change into a gown. Once you have changed, they will prep your foot by cleaning it with an antiseptic and most likely put an IV in your arm or hand.
Bunion surgery is pretty straightforward. The surgeon will cut the bony growth away from the toe and realign the bones so that they are straight. The surgeon may have to add a plate or screw to secure the toe in extreme cases. The surgeon will stitch the skin closed and dress or bandage it to keep it clean. If the surgeon has to add screws or plates to the foot, they will most likely place your food in a cast to protect it while it heals.
The average recovery time for bunion surgery can fluctuate depending on the severity of the bunion and the operation itself. The first two to three weeks will require you to use crutches and not put weight on your foot. An additional six weeks to six months of care will be necessary for your foot to heal completely after the surgery.