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Minimally Invasive Bunion Surgery

Minimally invasive or key-hole Bunion surgery is a technique that reduces the size of the incisions during the surgical procedure.

Bunion surgery is most often a day case or one night in hospital. Surgery can be done under ankle block (patient awake) or general anaesthetic.

Minimally invasive or key-hole Bunion surgery is a technique that reduces the size of the incisions during the surgical procedure. The Minimally invasive Bunion surgical technique has evolved and is in its third generation. It involves performing an osteotomy of the first metatarsal and phalanx through keyhole incisions and stabilizing with screws under fluroscan guidance. Dr Dracopoulos has completed three cadaver workshops on this method and recently spent time in Sydney learning this technique from a recognised leading surgeon in the field. Committed to offering patients the latest technology Dr Dracopoulos has now commenced keyhole or minimally invasive surgery for selected bunion cases.

MIS involves a much smaller skin incision through which the entire joint replacement operation takes place. In total knee replacement surgery this can often mean patients receive an 8-9cm surgical scar rather than 24-25 cms. This can also mean decreased post-operative pain due to reduced surgical disruption to surrounding muscles and tendons, a shorter stay in hospital and a faster return to everyday activities.

Possible specific complications include:

  • Under-correction (deformity returns)
  • Over-correction (great toe too straight)
  • Arthritis leading to pain and stiffness of the great toe
  • Nerve damage leading to permanent numbness of part of the great toe
  • Infection of the wound

In addition, as with any surgery there is a risk of deep vein thrombosis (blood clot) with potentially very serious consequences.

Occasionally (but not often) patients may have such a complication so severely that they feel worse off and need further correction surgery to address this, possibly by fusion of the great toe.

It is best to rest with the foot elevated for the first 2 weeks after surgery. The foot is bandaged and a special sandal supplied by the hospital is worn for 6 weeks. Sensible shoes are to be worn for a further 6 weeks after the bandages are removed.

It will take between 3-6 months for the swelling to go down. It will take 12 months before everything completely settles.

It is also important to remember that not all bunion operations are entirely successful.



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