Foot and Ankle Surgery
Our feet and ankles are made up of 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments, 33 joints and 26 bones creating a flexible structure, which allows us to perform many complex movements. From walking to running, standing to jumping, we use this area of the body everyday and therefore are prone to all sorts of problems, meaning foot and ankle surgery may be required.
There are many causes of pain in our feet and ankles, whether through injury, wear and tear, or even wearing ill-fitting shoes, these can all cause problems in this area.
At Clifton Park Hospital in Yorkshire, we have the specialist knowledge and expertise to diagnose and treat many problems in the foot and ankle area.
Ankle Fusion (Ankle Arthrodesis)
If you are experiencing severe arthritis in your ankles and have tried treating the problem with non-surgical methods (e.g. painkillers, injections and physiotherapy) then you may need an ankle fusion (arthrodesis).
Ankle Fusion is performed to reduce the pain of arthritis and improve function in the ankle area.
During the procedure, your surgeon will work to fuse the bones in the ankle (tibia, fibula and talus) together into one by securing them in place with metal hardware therefore allowing the bones to heal together.
This method reduces motion in the ankle and therefore reduces the pain and discomfort of arthritis in the area.
Bunion (Hallux Valgus)
If you have noticed that your big toe has started to lean towards the second toe leaving a bony bum on the inside of the foot, it is likely to be a bunion (hallux valgus).
The deformity of the bunion can be very painful and skin around bony bump on the side of your foot can become very sore.
There is no exact cause of a bunion however wearing poorly fitted shoes can make the problem worse.
Non-surgical treatments can be tried to use on a bunion, however it may not always respond, in this case surgery may be required. Your surgeon will work to realign the big toe and reduce the lump on the side of the foot.
Claw / Hammer Toes
Deformities in your smaller toes caused by wearing tight shoes are known as claw / hammer toes.
If you have a claw/hammer toe, you will find that your smaller toes have contracted and become deformed in some way and can be very discomforting.
Depending on the severity of the problem, you may need surgery.
Your surgeon will X-ray the affected toes to identify the severity of the deformities. If symptoms are severe, then a minor surgery will be performed to relieve the trapped tissue and length of the tendon.
Cartilage in the toe may be removed in more severe cases.
Joints throughout the body can become affected by arthritis – osteoarthritis in particular as the most common form.
Arthritis in the toes can feel very sore, uncomfortable and achy and, depending on the severity and pain caused, may require surgery.
During surgery, your surgeon will work to fix the joint in position with pins and take away the damaged cartilage.
If you experience severe pain on the ball of the foot and at the base of the toes, then it may be that you are suffering Morton’s Neuroma.
This condition usually develops between the third and fourth toes where fibrous tissues form around the nerve between the toes.
It may be that you are just experiencing a tingling sensation in early days however, if left untreated, Morton’s Neuroma can worsen overtime and leave you feeling sharp shooting pains and cramp.
During the procedure, your surgeon will work to remove thickened tissue around the nerve or even (depending on severity) take away the nerve completely.