There are many different options when it comes to bunion surgery. Depending on the degree of the bunion, a surgeon may choose to make a cut towards the head of the bone, the shaft of the first metatarsal or even a procedure at the base of the bone. Each procedure choice has its own post-op protocol, but many of them have the patient non-weight bearing for up to 3 months. At AZ Choice Foot and Ankle, we are able to have our patients walk immediatly after surgery and back in normal shoes at 6 weeks!
At AZ Choice Foot and Ankle, we specialize in the Lapiplasty 3D Bunionectomy. This procedure has several benefits over traditional bunionectomy including early weight bearing. Patients are allowed to walk on the foot the same day as surgery in a post-op boot. X-rays are taken at 2 weeks and 6 weeks to check alignment and assess healing. Most patients are able to walk in athletic shoes after 6 weeks. Low impact exercise may resume at 6 weeks. At 10-12 weeks, new x-rays are taken and impact exercise including running, jumping and hiking may resume in most cases. Physical therapy may be initiated at the 2 week mark if it is needed.
What Will The Pain Be like?
Post-op pain is a given in any surgery, but Dr. Suykerbuyk has developed a pain regiment for post-op bunions to minamize the effects. The day of surgery, patient receive a block at the leg which will prevent pain for 24-48 hours. Patients will also begin a treatment regiment of non-steroidal anti-inflammatories for swelling, gabapentin for nerve control and to help with sleep and hydrocodone for any break through pain. This regiment may varry depending on the patients history and current medications. Most of our post-bunionectomy patients have little to no pain and are off of narcotic pain medication by day 3.
What Can I Do While I'm In The Boot?
For the first 2 weeks, we recommend avoiding activity. It is important for the foot to rest and for the patient to recover from surgery. After 2 weeks, non-impact exercises may begin in the boot. This includes rowing, sit-ups and upper body weight training. See the attached video for more ideas!
The post-op recovery process has come a long way in the past 5 years. Pain is minimal after the Lapiplasty 3D Bunionectomy with early weight bearing and return to activity. Schedule your evaluation today!
Dr. Suykerbuyk, FACFAS