Metatarsalgia / Deformed Metatarsals
Metatarsalgia is a general term used to refer to a painful foot condition in the metatarsal region of the foot (the area between the arch and toes, or ball of the foot). The ball of the foot is a weight bearing area where the metatarsals bear the greatest amount of weight and pressure. If one or more of these metatarsals is out of alignment then excessive pressure is generated in the area causing pain, inflammation and sometimes producing a callus. Many people say the painful feeling is “like walking on rocks”
Conservative treatments for metatarsalgia are often limited because they cannot correct any bone deformities that contribute to the symptoms. If conservative treatment fails or the pain 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 (MIS) ambulatory surgical technique to correct metatarsalgia. It involves making “extremely small incision” on top of the foot to correct the affected metatarsal. 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, makes 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 temporally in a surgical shoe or boot to aid ambulation.