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What Is A Foot Exostectomy?
A foot exostectomy, also known as exostosis removal, is a surgical procedure performed to remove a bony prominence or growth called an exostosis from the foot. Exostoses are benign bony outgrowths that can develop on the surface of bones, often at joints or where tendons and ligaments attach. These growths can cause pain, discomfort, and limited mobility, especially when they impinge on nearby structures like nerves or soft tissues.
Foot exostectomy is commonly performed to address exostoses that cause problems such as:
- Bunions: A bunion is an exostosis that develops at the base of the big toe, causing the big toe to angle toward the second toe.
- Haglund’s deformity: This condition involves an exostosis at the back of the heel bone, leading to pain and inflammation in the area where the Achilles tendon attaches.
- Hallux rigidus: An exostosis on the top of the big toe joint can cause stiffness and limited range of motion in the joint.
- Tailor’s bunion: Also known as a bunionette, this exostosis develops at the base of the little toe.
During the foot exostectomy procedure, the surgeon makes an incision over the affected area to access the exostosis. The bony growth is then carefully removed, and any necessary adjustments to the surrounding tissues, tendons, or ligaments may be made to ensure proper alignment and function.
After the surgery, the incision is closed with sutures, and the foot is typically placed in a bandage or cast to protect the surgical site during the initial healing phase. Post-operative rehabilitation may involve physical therapy and exercises to help restore foot function and mobility.
Foot exostectomy is generally considered a safe procedure with a relatively short recovery period. As with any surgery, there are potential risks and complications, including infection, nerve damage, and delayed wound healing. However, complications are relatively rare.
The decision to undergo a foot exostectomy is made after a thorough evaluation and discussion with an orthopedic surgeon. They will assess the patient’s specific condition, medical history, and overall health to determine if exostectomy is the appropriate treatment option for the foot condition.