Foot bunion removal

What are foot bunions?

A bunion, also known as Hallux Valgus, is when the big toe points outwards towards the other toes. This can be painful over the bump on the inside of the foot, and also over the second toe that can become squashed.

The aim of surgical bunion treatment is to correct this deformity straighten the big toe.

What does this involve?

The operation is usually carried out under general anaesthetic, and is a day-case procedure. An incision is made on the side of the big toe, with a small incision over the top of the foot. The metatarsal bone, which is the long bone in the foot at the base of the bog toe, is cut and moved across to correct the bunion deformity and this is fixed with two small screws. Any extra bone is then removed. Following the operation, you will be placed in a special bandage.

When will I recover?

For the first few weeks following surgery you will need to elevate your foot as much as possible to reduce swelling. This will both make the foot more comfortable and help the wounds to heal. You must walk on your heel for six weeks following this operation.

The stitches will be removed after two weeks and your foot will be placed in a soft splint that helps to hold the big toe straight whilst it heals. You will wear this splint for another four weeks after which, if x-rays are satisfactory, you will be able to walk normally in loose fitting shoes. The swelling can take several months to completely settle.