A bunion is a bony bump on the side of the foot near the great toe which can be painful and inflamed or have no symptoms for many years. The deformity occurs when the big toe is forced inwards towards, and sometimes under or over, the other toes. As pressure is applied, the tissues around the joint may become swollen, red, stiff, and tender. Over the years the characteristic bony bump becomes increasingly prominent and arthritis will develop in the joint. Bunions can also occur on the outside of the foot near the little toe. This is called a “bunionette” or “Tailor’s Bunion”.
Conservative treatments for bunions are often limited because they cannot correct the bone deformities. There is no way to stop the progression or reverse the deformity without moving the bones back into the correct position and realigning the joint. This can only be accomplished with surgery. So, when conservative treatment fails or the bunion progresses to the point where conservative treatment is no longer a viable option, surgical intervention may be needed to correct the deformity.
Dr. Nunez does a minimally invasive ambulatory surgical technique to correct bunions. It involves making extremely small incisions, “The three magic incisions” to remove the bony exostosis or bump located along the medial side of the foot and on the top of the big toe to bring it into proper alignment or position. There is no need for a long open incision thus causing minimal injury to the adjacent tissues which results in reduced swelling, pain, and recovery time. MIS surgeons are able to rely on a compression dressing for stabilization immediately after surgery, eliminating the need for internal fixation (pins, screws plates, etc.)
The small surgical incisions enable the surgeon to use fine specially designed instruments to obtain the best cosmetic result.
Surgery is performed under Fluoroscopic imaging and using just local anesthetic instead of general anesthesia, making foot surgery possible for some patients who were previously considered to be too at risk for traditional surgery due to age or medical history.
There is less trauma to the tissue and surgical times are lessened with this technique, reducing pain and recovery time. Less suturing is necessary and often times no sutures are used. Postoperative patients ambulate immediately and are placed temporarily in a surgical shoe or boot to aid ambulation.