This patient has bunion to her both feet. Correction of bunion is done to her left foot.
The hallux valgus (Bunion) is the most common foot deformity. Bunions are bony protrusions on the inside of the big toe and are a common source of pain and difficulty and wearing shoes. They are commonly associated with deformities of the other toes, such as Hammer toes and Claw toes. The main underlying problem is the protrusion of the “knuckle bone” (Metatarsal bone) of the foot.
Bunion with 2nd Hammer toe deformities
These forefoot deformities can also cause painful corns under the ball of feet, or along the sides of the feet at the Bunions, and occasionally at the 5th toe (also known as Bunionette Deformity). Another common association is that of flat feet, and tight calf muscles.
Many people live with these problems by wearing broader extra width shoes or open sandals but the more severe and problematic feet often need surgery.
However, foot surgery has traditionally always been associated with long down times and this has deterred many patients from surgery. Fortunately, new techniques and concepts in surgical management have shortened down times by as much as 90%.
Traditional techiniques been using Distal Osteotomies (e.g. Mitchell or Chevron Osteotomies ) for the milder bunions. An Osteotomy is a cut made in a bone to correct deformities. These are relatively simple procedures. However, they are not able to correct the more severe deformities.
The more severe deformities require proximal Metatarsal osteotomies or fusions (Lapidus procedure).
The Scarf Osteotomy is a hybrid procedure which has the best of both worlds. It is able to correct very large deformities and yet has the shortest down time of all. The term “scarf” comes from carpentry and the nature of the scarf cut is that is it more stable, allowing for quicker recovery and earlier weight bearing.
With the aid of a special walking shoe, the patient is able to walk immediately with minimal pain soon after the surgery. By about four weeks, most patients are walking reasonably well. Return to sports can be made possible in as early as three months.