Traditional bunion surgery techniques have been around for many years, however with advancements in medical research and technology, minimally invasive bunion surgery is becoming increasingly common as the technique of choice for many podiatric foot surgeons around the world.
What is the difference between traditional bunion surgery and keyhole bunion surgery?
Traditional bunion surgery involves a long incision over the dorsomedial aspect of the big toe joint. The joint capsule is then dissected and the bones exposed to allow the surgeon to view the entire joint and surrounding structures. The bones are then cut, realigned and held in place with internal fixation. Minimally invasive bunion surgery, on the other hand, involves a small number of very small incisions. Fine surgical equipment is then used to make bone cuts through the portal incisions and the bone is fixated with screws. A special X-ray machine is used during the bunion surgery to view the position of the bones and ensure proper placement of internal fixation. No compromise is made to the level of correction or screw fixation with keyhole techniques and thus is an effective advanced method of performing bunion correction.
What is the difference in recovery between traditional bunion surgery and keyhole bunion surgery?
Due to a significantly smaller incision, there is reduced trauma to the joint and less damage to soft tissue and surrounding structures with minimally invasive surgery as opposed to traditional techniques. Subsequently, pain and swelling following surgery have been found to be a lot less, allowing patients to get back to their normal activity faster. Since cuts are made to the bone and fixated, the bone still requires adequate healing time, however, this occurs while weight bearing in a post-operative shoe and patients can begin weight-bearing immediately after surgery. The absence of a long incision also means very minimal scarring following surgery, so this technique offers the best possible cosmetic appearance postoperatively.
Who is a suitable candidate for minimally invasive bunion surgery?
The type of bunion surgery technique performed depends on the alignment of the bones making up the big toe joint and the severity of the problem. Not everyone will be an ideal candidate for minimally invasive surgery, however seeking an early opinion before the deformity worsens and becomes increasingly painful will give you the best chance of requiring only minimally invasive surgery as opposed to traditional techniques.
Where can I find a foot surgeon who performs minimally invasive bunion surgery in Perth?
Perth Podiatric Surgery is excited to announce that it will be the first practice in Western Australia to offer minimally invasive bunion surgery from January 2018. For a specialist consultation with foot surgeon Dr. Andrew Knox call 9383 3851 or book online.
Disclaimer: This blog is intended for general information purposes only. Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.