Toe Conditions: Bunions

Dr. Baravarian discusses bunion causes and treatment options.

A bunion typically appears as a bump on the inside edge of the foot, where the innermost bone of the foot meets the big toe. The bump appears when the first metatarsal shifts outward so that the head of the bone protrudes on the inside of the foot near the big toe joint.

 

If you suffer from bunions, you’re in good company (although it may not feel like it by the end of the day). Bunions are one of the most common foot problems, affecting an estimated 25-33% of adults. Bunions occur the most in women and older adults.

Is Surgery the Only Treatment Option for Bunions?

Carmerlla discusses her bunion revision surgery at UFAI and how it has changed her life.

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Yes and no. While you can technically only “fix” a bunion with surgery, there are non-surgical treatments that will help relieve symptoms.

 

These include wider shoe gear, orthotic inserts and stretching exercises to reduce pressure on the joint of the bunion. When the bunion is painful despite conservative treatments, you should discuss surgery with a qualified and experienced foot surgeon.

Read more about the different stages of a bunion and varying treatments options.


For Over a Decade, Nationally Recognized as a Bunion Surgery Center of Excellence

With decades of combined experience, the bunion surgeons at University Foot and Ankle Institute have collectively performed over 20,000 bunion surgeries and have one of the highest success rates in the country.

 

Years of research have proved that no one bunion procedure works for everyone. The majority of bunion surgeons have one universal procedure for all of their patients and can lead to unsuccessful surgical outcomes. UFAI is one of the few practices in the world that are trained in all 44 variations of bunion surgery.

 

It’s our experience and expertise with the different bunion surgeries that allows us to determine the very best option for each individual patient. This means the quickest, most comfortable, pain-free and successful surgery available.

Read more about the types of bunion surgery available at UFAI.

 

 

What's The Gold Standard for Bunion Surgery?

Dr. Baravarian explains why the lapidus bunionectomy is considered to be the Gold Standard for bunion surgery.

Lapidus bunionectomy, considered the Gold Standard for bunion surgery, is the most advanced and permanent option ever available for bunion correction. For the right patient, this procedure has the highest success rates with essentially a 0% chance of the bunion returning.

 

University Foot and Ankle Institute is one of the few institutes that offer this procedure. We assisted in developing the technology that allows for immediate weight bearing following the surgery. Our rate of fusion (success) for the Lapidus Procedure is 99.9%, among the highest in the country.

 

 

Our Patient Care is Second to None

Our family friendly staff is one of our greatest assets and our number one priority is our patients. We have the our own imaging services, brace and orthotic manufacturing, as well as on-site physical therapy clinic and state-of-the-art operating rooms. This often eliminates the need to go from one office to another and allows us to coordinate all services and specialties for our patients in a single location. From start to finish, we are with you every step of the way.

 

 

UFAI, Innovators in Bunion Care

We are constantly researching and developing new technologies and techniques to advance the best possible surgical outcomes for physicians everywhere. It was our surgeons who developed procedures that infuse stem cells and amniotic cells during bunion surgery. These advanced technologies help prevent scar formation, speed up recovery time and decrease the need for physical therapy.

 

We work with manufactures in the development of surgical products and appliances and always are conducting studies to advance the state-of-the-art technologies used in bunion surgery. Currently we are studying the relevance of bone marrow infusion and gelling techniques for several types of bunion surgeries including the Lapidus Procedure.

 

Our surgeons are often asked to share their experience and expertise. They have published dozens of articles and case studies in many scientific journals, including Podiatry Today and Clinics in Podiatric Medicine and Surgery. They are regularly invited to lecture at The American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeon and Western Podiatric Medical Association conventions, as well seminars around the world.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Bunions and Bunion Surgery

 

Q: Am I a candidate for bunion removal surgery? 

Not everyone is a good candidate for a bunionectomy, and if a bunion is in its early stages, which we hope it is, we will want to consider less-invasive treatments. We want to avoid surgery whenever possible. Since bunions tend to worsen with time, early treatment is the best medicine.

 

Q: Will my bunion come back after surgery?

Bunionectomy is a very effective treatment in that it removes the bunion, relieving the pain and discomfort it can cause when walking and performing other activities. However, proper foot-care after surgery is essential to prevent bunions from coming back. After we correct your bunion issue it is important to avoid the same things that helped cause the problem in the first place. We know it can be difficult for some patients to avoid wearing high heels and other improper footwear, but it is more important for you to never suffer from bunions again. As you recover we may suggest the use of corrective orthotics.

 

Q. I think my child may have a bunion. At what age can you diagnose a bunion? And is bunion surgery ever recommended for children?

We can diagnose a bunion in a child as young as three or four years of age. If surgery is required, we usually hold off until they are thirteen or fourteen, when the growth plate in the foot has completely closed. The recommended procedure for our pediatric bunion patients is most often the Lapidus Bunionectomy.

 

Q: I read about a minimally invasive bunion procedure that removes the bunion by simply shaving down the bone. They claim it results in a faster recovery and no scarring. Is bone shaving an effective option for bunion removal?

Unfortunately it is not a good option for most people because you are not realigning the bone, so you are not correcting the core problem. The end result is the bunion will most likely return and then need to have surgery again. We know this first-hand since about 20% of our bunion surgeries are correcting other’s work and we have repaired our fair of these of these procedures as have many of our colleagues.

 

Fortunately permanent bunion correction surgery with minimal or no scarring is done by us all the time with immediate weight-bearing with an essentially painless recovery.

 

Q. I have a plantar plate tear affecting my 2nd and 3rd toes. I also have a bunion on same foot. I can't have the surgery for 4 months and I am worried that waiting may be detrimental to it's success. Your website gives me hope, your thoughts?

You should be alright waiting but you must make sure the person who performs your surgery is well versed on plantar plate repair and the bunion type is done to your specific need. There are 44 variations of bunion surgery and research has proven that no one bunion procedure works for everyone.

 

Q. I had low back fusion surgery and was told because of my back issues that bunion surgery is not an option for me...is this true?

No, this is not true at all. If anything, stabilizing the foot through bunion surgery decreases stress on the back.


View our patients' bunion surgery before and after photos.

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    Dr. Gary was terrific and numbed my toe before he did the procedure. It was absolute pleasure, with minimal pain and anxiety.
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