Thousands of foot surgeries are performed in the United States annually. However, these procedures are not always the treatments of choice. Your foot and ankle specialist will tell you if surgery is right for your foot or ankle and also the details of the treatment and recovery.
Let’s talk about foot surgery, what you should know before considering foot surgery, and where you can go in Hartford County, CT, for outstanding foot care.
The Reasons for Foot Surgery
Foot and ankle problems can develop suddenly, as with a fracture or tendon tear. Or, a podiatric problem may develop over time. Perhaps you have osteoarthritis in your feet or ankle instability due to repeated sprains.
Or, the skin and nails on your feet have changed. Maybe the wrong shoes or foot deformities, such as hammertoes, have caused uncomfortable corns and calluses. Perhaps injury or repeated fungal infections have discolored and thickened one or more toenails.
Whatever the underlying pathology, when you perceive a difference in foot function, form, and health, you may feel you need the advice of a foot and ankle specialist.
Evaluation For Foot Surgery
An evaluation for foot surgery involves a friendly, in-depth consultation with foot and ankle specialists. They will discuss your symptoms and concerns with you, along with your health history, medications, and past orthopedic interventions.
Also, the surgeon will look at your feet and, as needed, perform imaging assessments with digital X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or other tests. She may analyze your gait, too–that is, detail the biomechanics of how you place your feet when you walk. Then, she will discuss treatment.
Sometimes, treatment for foot and ankle issues is as simple as changing shoes or losing some weight. With others, pain relievers and rest are in order; some people benefit from physical therapy, assistive devices, and other services.
However, surgery may be in order when conservative measures fail to produce relief. Surgery can:
- Relieve pain and stiffness
- Correct deformities
- Improve mobility and ability to bear weight
- Correct gait and balance issues
- Improve the health of skin, nails, muscles, nerves, connective tissues, and bones
Kinds of Foot Surgeries
There are many surgical procedures that address problems associated with your complex feet and ankles. Here are just a few of them.
Depending on the severity of the deformity, a bunionectomy may be performed in the office or hospital. It involves removing the bony bump at the base of the big toe and straightening the affected joint.
Ankle joint replacement
Ankle joint replacement surgery removes the damage when the ankle sustains traumatic damage or deteriorates due to arthritis. Then, the orthopedic surgeon implants plastic and metal components to duplicate the weight-bearing and motion capabilities of the natural joint.
Arthritis, complex fractures, and repeated ankle fractures may warrant joint fusion. This procedure removes damaged cartilage and bone and stabilizes the joint(s) with wire, screws, or plates. The result is improved balance and gait, along with pain relief.
Done in the orthopedic care center, nail surgery corrects ingrown and diseased nails. The common matrixectomy removes all or part of a nail growing into the skin surrounding the nail.
Skin and tendon surgeries
Warts, fatty and fibrous growths, and more can interfere with shoe fit and comfort, as well as gait and balance. Your foot and ankle doctor can remove most of these growths in the office. More complex tendon surgeries reroute or repair the thick cords of connective tissues within the foot or between the calf and heel. Mostly involve a period of recovery and rehabilitation.
Leading Foot and Ankle Specialist in Hartford County, CT
At Advanced Orthopedics New England, our on-staff foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Amanda Fantry, is a board-certified expert in diseases, injuries, and malformations of the foot and ankle.
Call us for an in-office evaluation of your lower extremity issue. Dr. Fantry works out of our Bloomfield, Enfield, Vernon, and Rocky Hill locations. Phone (860) 728-6740, or request a visit online. We look forward to speaking with you.