Learning About Podiatry Learning About Podiatry

About Me

Learning About Podiatry

Hi there, my name is Frazier. I am happy to share my knowledge about podiatry on this site. My feet have always been in poor shape. When I was a toddler, my parents had my club foot fixed by a surgeon. Since then, I have required ongoing care from a podiatrist. The podiatrist monitors the health of my feet on yearly basis. I have to wear orthotics to keep my foot supported with every step I take. I will use this site to talk about all of the care and treatment options provided by podiatrists. Hopefully your feet stay healthy so you can stay happy.

What You Need to Know About Your Podiatry Visit and Bunion Surgery

Do you have a bunion? Even though this common podiatric problem may start out small, without treatment these bony bumps can grow into a serious (and painful) issue. Before your bunion goes from minor to major, take a look at what you need to know about your upcoming podiatrist visit and surgical options.

When Should You Go to the Doctor?

A misalignment of the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint in the big toe can cause a bunion. As the joint grows larger, a noticeable bump forms on the foot. While you can't see the interior issues behind a bunion, you will notice the outward bump and discomfort. Beyond the appearance of the bump, a bunion can also force your big toe into an odd angle. This easy-to-see angle can also force your second toe out of alignment—especially if you wait to get treatment.

If you have pain or tenderness in the big toe area or notice a bump on the outside of your foot, see inflammation (swelling), or have redness at the joint, contact a podiatry specialist. This doctor can examine the area, recommend other diagnostic tests/x-rays, diagnose the bunion, and create a treatment plan.

When Should You Get Surgery?

After the doctor examines your foot and diagnoses the bunion, they will discuss your treatment options. These may or may not include surgery. Some patients respond well to conservative or medical treatments, such as bunion-shield pads, footwear changes, custom orthotics, ice, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) medications. 

If these treatment options don't work, the podiatrist may recommend surgery. The doctor may also suggest surgical treatment if you have a large bunion, severe pain, can't walk/move well, or the issue interferes with your normal daily activities. 

What Is Bunion Surgery?

The type of surgery the bunion surgeon recommends depends on several factors. These include the severity of the bunion, the bones/tissue around the bunion, and your overall health. To effectively treat this podiatric problem, the doctor may need to remove part of the bone and realign the MTP joint. Severe bunions with extensive damage may require a fusion procedure, screws/wires/plates, or joint replacement surgery. 

How Long Is the Recovery Process?

Like other types of procedures, bunion surgery also takes time. According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), the type of surgery and your ability to follow the surgeon's post-procedure instructions impact the overall recovery time. You may need regular podiatrist's office check-ups during the first year after surgery.