A Quick Patient’s Guide to Bunion and Hammertoe Surgery

Bunions and hammertoes are among other most common deformities that cause most people to seek the help of podiatrist or chiropractor. The bunion and hammertoe surgery should only be considered as the last option after all the other interventions have failed, or have not produced satisfactory results. Fixing hammer toes without surgery is the most recommended option but does not work in all cases, especially where it is not combined with the requisite lifestyle changes.

What are bunions?

In medical terms, bunions refer to the abnormal growths which interrupt the feet’s bone structure. The big toe bears the most burden as it provides leverage when running, dancing, pedaling or walking. Thus, the toe plays important role in supporting the body and maintaining body balance. Wearing of improperly fitting or improperly shaped shoe is one of the leading causes of bunions. The pressure exerted on the big toe may cause it to deform and occasion severe pain.

What is hammertoe?

The hammertoe is a deformity which cause the bending downward of the toes. The condition is mostly diagnosed by physical examination of the toes, and they will appear to be unnaturally bent downward, resembling a hammer. The condition can affect any of the toes in your feet, but the most commonly affected are the second or third toes. The leading cause of hammertoe is wearing high heels or close toed shoes. Other common causes include nerve disorders or injuries, muscle imbalance, arthritis, tight footwear or high heels (generally shoes which do not fit properly), and serious injuries to the toe, such as breaks, jams and stubs. Generally, excessive pressure on the toes of your feet will affect the middle joint of almost all the toes and cause them to dislocate. This results in discomfort and severe pain.

Is the surgery risky?

Where alternative interventions have not worked well, the best treatment for hammer toes is surgery. The surgery to correct bunion and hammertoe is generally successful. The surgery generally helps reduce pain. Risks include development of blood clots, infections and inflammation. These risks are rare and the process is a success in over 90% of the patients on who it is performed. For best results, the surgery should be followed with the appropriate hammer toe treatment exercises to improve flood of blood to the affected toes.

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