What to expect with bunion surgery

How painful is bunion surgery?

Is the surgery painful? The amount of pain experienced after bunion surgery is different from one person to the next. Most patients will experience discomfort for three to five days. If you closely follow your foot and ankle surgeon’s instructions, you can help minimize pain and swelling after your bunion surgery.

What can I expect after bunion surgery?

Ice your foot and toe to speed healing and reduce inflammation. After a week or two, you can drive if necessary. Expect your foot to remain swollen to some degree for several months after bunion removal. Wear shoes with ample room to minimize your pain.

Can you walk after bunion surgery?

In many cases, walking after bunion surgery means patients can get around but not run around. Patients are generally walking in a surgical shoe and usually keep weight on the heel or outer edge of the foot. Some are able to get back to work soon after surgery, especially when their jobs are more sedentary.

What is the fastest way to recover from bunion surgery?

Recovery after the procedure

  1. rest and elevate their foot and leg to keep it from moving.
  2. take pain medications for discomfort and antibiotics to prevent infection.
  3. use ice packs on the foot and toe to bring down swelling.
  4. wear a surgical boot for several weeks.
  5. use crutches or a knee walker for a few weeks.

Are you asleep during bunion surgery?

Most bunion surgery is performed under ankle block anesthesia, in which your foot is numb, but you are awake. Occasionally, general or spinal anesthesia is used.

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Is bunion surgery worth having?

The majority of patients, having bunion surgery for the right reasons, end up with a good to excellent outcome and would tell you that bunion surgery is definitely worth it!

How long do you need to be off work after bunion surgery?

If you are on your feet for most of the day we estimate that you should be able to return to work in about 2 weeks. However, if your bunion is more severe you will need to take somewhere between 6-8 weeks off and you may require a cast for part of this time.

Can I take my boot off to sleep after bunion surgery?

You must not walk on the operated foot unless you are wearing the post-operative shoe. Some people sleep with the shoe on for the first few days after surgery because it gives them a sense of more security, but you do not have to keep it on unless you are walking.

Do screws stay in after bunion surgery?

The screw can also remain in the foot for life, and only needs to be removed in very rare cases if it becomes painful or prominent. This can be done in a straightforward outpatient procedure performed long after the bone has healed.

How many hours does bunion surgery take?

Surgery is typically done one foot at a time; depending on the procedure both may be done. The actual surgery takes less than an hour.

Does your shoe size change after bunion surgery?

The vast majority of patients who undergo bunion surgery experience a dramatic reduction of foot pain after surgery, along with a significant improvement in the alignment of their big toe. Bunion surgery will not allow you to wear a smaller shoe size or narrow-pointed shoes.

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Do they break your toe in bunion surgery?

Bunion surgery usually involves breaking the toe bone (metatarsal) to correct the alignment problem that caused the bunion to form, this part of the procedure is called an osteotomy.

What happens at 6 weeks after bunion surgery?

About 6 weeks after surgery it is important to exercise or mobilise the toe to reduce the risk of the toe remaining stiff. You will be advised of the exercises and when to begin them at your out-patient appointment. On average, you should expect to spend six weeks using the post-operative shoe.

Can you have both bunions removed at the same time?

In fact, Kathy required a bilateral bunionectomy, where bunions on both feet are removed during two different procedures.

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