Conditions that May Require Surgery
Our goal is always to resolve your foot conditions and injuries with nonsurgical care as often as possible. Unfortunately, surgery is sometimes the best course of treatment. There is good news in the fact our medical team has the proven ability to perform successful procedures for conditions like:
- Bone fractures. There are different types and severity of broken bones, including ones where there are multiple pieces or the broken ends do not line up correctly for proper healing. In these cases, reconstructive surgery can be used to place everything back where it belongs.
- Bunions. One of the most common of the potential toe problems a patient may develop, this is a progressive condition. That means we might be able to use conservative care to treat the symptoms and slow its development, but surgery is the only way to truly correct it.
- Charcot foot. This deformity is one of the major lower limb concerns that can result from diabetes. Impaired blood flow and damaged nerves can weaken bones, make them more susceptible to fractures, and leave you unaware problems have developed. Normal usage leads to further deformity and the need for reconstructive surgery.
- Flatfoot. If you have flexible flatfoot, or a child has pediatric flatfoot, there is not likely the need for surgical reconstruction, but a rigid condition causing difficulty and pain with your daily activities may need surgery.
- Hammertoes. This particular deformity, along with the related mallet and claw toe conditions, develops when an imbalance in strength between the muscles and tendons located on the bottoms and tops of toes leads to abnormal bending of the toe(s). Much like with bunions, these are progressive conditions, and they are best resolved at early stages, so do not wait to seek treatment.
Some of the types of reconstructive surgical procedures we may use include:
- Bone fusion. Separate foot or toe bones can be fused together to restrict movement by a procedure sometimes used to treat severe arthritic conditions.
- Bone grafting. Bone grafts take a bone tissue from a different location to help repair bones damaged by physical trauma.
- Joint implantation. This procedure essentially entails replacing a damaged or dysfunctional joint with an artificial joint or an orthopedic prosthesis.
- Osteotomy. Depending on your condition, we need to make a cut in the bone, reposition them, and then hold the bones in place with the use of screws, pins, or plates.
- Tendon repair/transfer. In some reconstructive surgeries, we either repair a damaged tendon by making cuts and sewing the ends together or transfer a tendon from one location to another.
Preparing and Recovery
After we have determined that your best course of treatment is surgery, we will carefully discuss your options so you can make the best possible decisions for your healthcare. Our doctors want you to understand all potential risks and benefits, and everything that may be involved with your recovery.
Before you come in for your surgery, we will have conducted the appropriate tests and examinations (X-rays, EKG, etc.). It is our goal to be completely familiar with the area before the procedure so we can deliver the best possible results for you.
In addition to tests and exams, we perform a careful review of your medical history and any existing conditions. To further ensure your safety and reduce the risk of complications, we will evaluate your current medical condition, including allergies, medications, illnesses, and other such matters.
Naturally, every reconstructive surgery and recovery period will differ based on the patient and the procedure(s) being performed. With this in mind, we will provide guidelines for your recovery timeframe. Additionally, we will discuss what you can expect from the procedure, any preparations that need to be made, and what actions you will need to take while recovering from surgery.
For more information about the reconstructive surgical procedures we provide here at Dr. DeCato and Associates, give us a call at (440) 992-4477. Our friendly staff will be happy to answer any questions you might have, or help you schedule an appointment with one of our surgeons.