Bunions can be an extremely uncomfortable condition and for some, surgery may be the best option to achieve long-term relief. Orthopedic foot and ankle surgeon, Stuart Katchis, M.D., is a leader in treating bunions and performing bunion correction surgeries. He has helped hundreds of patients get back on their feet pain-free with remarkable results.
If you are considering bunion surgery in NYC, here’s a look at Dr. Katchis’ answers to the most frequently asked questions.
1) What are bunions?
A bunion is a foot condition caused by misalignment of the metatarsophalangeal joint, the joint between the bones of the foot and the bones of the big toe. It results in a bump on the outer edge of the foot at the base of the big toe, which can be extremely painful.
Bunions happen when the joint becomes unstable. This is usually due to abnormal foot structure or poor foot mechanics, both of which place excessive pressure on the ball of the foot and the toes. This leads to instability in the joint, and causes the big toe to drift inward toward the second toe and the joint to push out toward the outside of the foot.
2) What makes bunions worse?
Experts disagree about whether narrow shoes that crowd the toes—like typical women’s dress shoes—actually cause bunions, but there is little doubt that they exacerbate the condition. Poorly fitting shoes, prior toe injuries, and rheumatoid arthritis all place you at a higher risk for developing bunions. Women are also more likely to develop them than men.
Bunions are a progressive condition and tend to worsen over time. Along with the bump at the base of the toe, bunion symptoms include:
- Pain at the base of the big toe or along the inside of the foot
- A burning sensation in the same area
- Swelling, redness or inflammation
- Loss of movement in the big toe
- Pain that worsens after standing for long periods of time
3) Do all bunions require surgery?
As a progressive condition, bunions are best treated as soon as you first notice symptoms. Bunions don’t always require surgery, and the earlier you seek treatment the less likely it becomes. Non-surgical treatment can include icing, taking anti-inflammatory medication, or even receiving cortisone injections. Changing your footwear—trading in tight shoes and high heels for footwear with ample toe room and supportive soles—can be helpful, as can orthotics. Taping and padding the big toe can also improve joint stability and reduce pain and stress. If conservative treatments aren’t effective, surgery may be an option.
4) Will my bunion surgery in NYC be covered by my insurance?
Bunions are often more than an annoyance or a cosmetic concern. They can cause not only significant pain, but functional limitations, and can have an impact on what activities you are able to perform. Because of this, bunion surgery in NYC is commonly covered by health insurance. However, if you’re considering surgery for primarily cosmetic reasons and not because of painful symptoms, it probably won’t be covered. The best way to find out whether your insurance will cover bunion surgery is to contact your insurance provider directly.
5) What should I expect if I decide to undergo bunion surgery in NYC?
At Extend Orthopedics, we offer a cutting-edge procedure using the Re+Line® Bunion Correction System. People often put off bunion treatment due to the length of time involved in recovery, and the Re+Line® system significantly reduces the elevation period. In fact, most patients can bear weight on the affected foot the same day as their surgery, and the procedure eliminates the need for a bulky cast. There are numerous types of bunion surgery and the option that is right for you will depend upon your unique needs. We will be able to recommend the appropriate procedure after examining your condition.
6) How long will it take before I can walk after undergoing bunion surgery?
This depends on the patient and the type of surgery you undergo. One of the advantages of the Re+Line® procedure is that it can have you back on your feet almost immediately. No matter what type of bunion surgery you undergo, you will likely need to wear a flat and firm post-operative shoe to support and protect your foot while the bones heal.
Find Out More About Bunion Surgery in NYC
You don’t have to live with bunions. Whether you’re in the early stages of this condition or have advanced symptoms, numerous treatment options are available to you. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Stuart Katchis today to learn more about our effective bunion treatments to get you back on your feet.