Bunions can be a source of ongoing pain and swelling that can affect your ability to walk and perform your daily routine. If you have a bunion, then your foot specialist may recommend that you undergo bunion removal. Continue reading to learn how to prepare for bunion surgery in Sugar Land.
Undergo Pre-Admission Testing
Before the day of your surgery, your doctor may have you do some pre-admission testing (PAT) to ensure that you are physically and medically fit for surgery. While the nature of these tests can vary, they usually involve the taking of blood samples. Non-invasive heart examinations, physical examinations, and chest X-rays are other examples of PAT.
Stop Nicotine Use
As with many other surgical procedures, you may be advised to quit smoking in the time leading up to your surgery and during your recovery. Nicotine, along with other chemicals contained in cigarettes, can increase your risk for experiencing problems after your bunionectomy. The use of nicotine can slow blood flow to the leg and potentially increase your risk of blood clots and deep vein thrombosis, impede the healing of soft tissue and bone at the surgical site, and increase the chances of infection after surgery. To help ensure the best results from your bunion removal, it’s best not to use any products that contain nicotine before the procedure. Discuss your options for quitting smoking with your surgeon or primary care physician.
Purchase Orthopedic Devices
To promote better healing, your surgeon may advise you to avoid putting weight on your foot after your bunionectomy. To help with this, you may be provided with a list of devices, such as crutches, shower chairs, or walkers, to purchase before and use after your surgery.
Stop Eating and Drinking
It’s important to have as little contents in your stomach at the time of your surgery as possible. For this reason, your doctor will tell you to stop eating and drinking at some point before your appointment, with midnight the night before being typical. Finally, your surgeon may have you avoid certain medications before your surgery.
X-rays are an important diagnostic tool for foot doctors. They allow doctors to evaluate a problem and track the effectiveness of the treatments they are using. Here are some of the reasons your foot doctor in Sugar Land may recommend an X-ray.
If your doctor suspects that your foot pain is being caused by a fracture, he or she will order an X-ray to see the bone and look for signs of a crack or break. An X-ray can also tell your foot doctor if the bone has been changed by an infection, arthritis, or another bone disease. If you have suffered an injury, an X-ray lets your foot doctor locate pieces of glass, metal, or other foreign objects that can be lodged in the wound. In some cases, X-rays are used to ensure that children’s bones are growing properly. If you had your foot in a cast, your doctor will perform an X-ray when it is removed to make sure that the bones are fully healed.
If you undergo foot surgery, you will receive anesthesia for your comfort and manage your pain. The type of anesthesia you receive depends on the type of surgery you are having, your health, and your preferences. Your foot surgeon in Sugar Land will explain your options to you so you know what to expect. Here is a look at some of the different types of anesthesia used during foot and ankle surgery.
Local and Regional Anesthesia
Local and regional anesthesia are similar to what you receive at the dentist. You receive a series of injections that prevent nerve impulses from being conducted, thus blocking any pain you may feel. A local anesthetic is used to numb a small area, like a toe, while a regional blocks pain in a large area, such as your leg. With both these forms of anesthesia, you remain completely awake, so you can respond to questions and instructions from your foot doctor. Some of the benefits of these types of anesthesia is that there is no increased risk of heart attack or stroke as there is with general anesthesia. They are also the most affordable forms of anesthesia.
Conscious sedation involves the use of a mild sedative, delivered via an IV by your foot surgeon. You will not fall asleep with this kind of sedation, but you will feel extremely relaxed. Because this kind of anesthesia does not block pain, it is often combined with a local or regional option. Conscious sedation is not ideal for long procedures and can cause nausea and headaches in some patients. If you are nervous about your procedure, your podiatrist may recommend conscious sedation.
When you have general anesthesia, you will be put in a deep state of sleep throughout your operation, so you don’t experience any kind of pain. You also will not have knowledge of the surgery. General anesthesia comes with a risk of heart attack, stroke, and lung infection, which is greater in smokers and people who are overweight. Your surgeon will help you determine if this is the best fit for your operation.
One common condition that foot specialists near Sugar Land can treat is plantar warts. Plantar warts are skin growths that are caused by viral infections. They can be painful when they grow on the weight-bearing areas of the feet and they can often recur despite podiatric treatment. That’s why podiatrists recommend taking steps to reduce the risk of contracting the viral infection.
Plantar warts can easily spread from place to place, both on the same person and from person to person. Avoid walking around barefoot to reduce your risk of contracting this viral infection. You can wear flip-flops while using shower facilities in locker rooms or hospitals. Never touch a plantar wart on yourself or someone else; instead, see a podiatrist promptly. Keep your feet as clean and dry as possible. If you tend to sweat from the feet excessively, you may wish to change your socks several times during the day, especially in hot weather.
There are a variety of foot conditions that a podiatrist can treat, including flatfoot. If you are suffering from foot pain on a regular basis, particularly pain around your heel or arch, you may have flat feet. Talk to your foot surgeon in Sugar Land about your symptoms, and read the answers to the following questions to find out more about flatfoot and how surgery can help.
What Is Flatfoot?
Feet that have low arches are considered flat. If you have flat feet, you may notice that the entire sole of each foot touches the floor when you are standing. While some individuals with flatfeet experience no symptoms, others experience pain that can make activities such as running and playing sports more difficult. Flatfeet may be a hereditary condition that results in the arches not fully developing during childhood, or it can develop as the result of an injury or wear and tear with age. Even if you do not experience foot pain due to flat feet, you may develop problems with your ankles and knees due to the misalignment of your legs.
What Does Surgery Involve?
If your podiatrist has recommended surgery to correct your flat feet, you may be wondering what this procedure entails. Flatfoot surgery is a reconstructive procedure that aims to improve the alignment of the foot by creating a higher arch. The exact techniques used depend on the patient’s specific problems, but the procedure usually involves repairing the ligaments and tendons that support the arch. Bone cuts may also be needed to correct flat feet.
Can Surgery Help Me?
Only a foot surgeon can give you a definitive answer about whether or not flatfoot surgery will help you. However, there are a few signs which indicate that this procedure may be useful. If you experience foot or ankle pain on a daily basis, then you may benefit from surgery. Your podiatrist may recommend non-invasive treatments, such as immobilization, shoe inserts, and physical therapy, before considering foot surgery.
Plantar fasciitis is a common and painful condition that affects the plantar fascia, the ligament that runs from the heel along the bottom of the foot. Although it frequently begins in one foot, over time, it may impact both feet. If you think you could have plantar fasciitis, see your foot doctor in Sugar Land as soon as possible for diagnosis. The earlier you begin treatment for plantar fasciitis, the easier it is likely to be to get relief. Consider making an appointment with your foot doctor if you have these symptoms.
The pain caused by plantar fasciitis is usually sharp and intense. It starts in the heel and may run along the bottom of the foot. The pain is at its worst after a period of rest, when the ligament gets stiff and needs to be stretched out again. For that reason, most people complain of significant pain when getting out of bed in the morning or after extended periods of sitting or standing still. Depending on the severity of the condition, the pain may go away completely after the ligament gets stretched out after periods of walking around, or it may persist throughout the day and interfere with mobility.
Burning sensations are also possible with plantar fasciitis. This kind of pain usually occurs along the bottom of the foot and may persist all day. Burning pain may be accompanied by numbness or tingling that may be relieved after walking to loosen the ligament.
Stiffness is a very common symptom of plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia can get very right and stiff after periods of inactivity, causing stiffness that affects the whole foot. Swelling is also possible alongside the stiffness. If you have plantar fasciitis, your foot doctor may show you exercises you can use to reduce stiffness to help control some of your symptoms. Many people with plantar fasciitis must do these exercises as soon as they get out of bed in the mornings to reduce the intense pain they feel.
Ganglion cysts are fluid-filled masses that can cause discomfort. Although ganglion cysts most commonly appear on the wrists and hands, they can and do affect your feet. If you experience one of these common soft-tissue injuries, visit your foot doctor in Sugar Land as soon as possible. Early treatment can often prevent the cyst from worsening and reduce the need for foot surgery in the future. If a ganglion cyst is affecting your feet, here is what you need to know.
What causes ganglion cysts?
Doctors are unsure what causes ganglion cysts to occur. Some experts believe that the cysts are the result of some kind of trauma to the soft tissue and that the ganglion cyst is actually a collection of several smaller cysts. Others suspect that a flaw in a joint allows connective tissue to bulge, creating the cyst. In many cases, people who experience a ganglion cyst cannot point to any kind of injury or other occurrence that preceded the appearance of the cyst.
What are the symptoms?
The cyst itself, which is usually a soft, unmovable lump, is typically the first sign. Some people also experience aching or throbbing pain. Typically, cysts get bigger over time and may suddenly reduce in size or disappear completely, only to reappear again. Rather than waiting out a cyst to see if it goes away, it is helpful to see your foot doctor when it appears, so he or she can evaluate it when it is flared up.
What types of treatments are available?
If you have a ganglion cyst, your foot doctor may recommend aspiration. During an aspiration procedure, your doctor will remove the fluid inside of the cyst using a needle and may inject corticosteroids to ease the inflammation. If the cyst is not painful, simply monitoring the cyst may be enough. For persistent and painful cysts, foot surgery may be needed. Foot surgery is the most effective procedure for chronic cysts, which often reappear after aspiration.
There are a few different types of cysts that can develop on the feet. Cysts are a bulging, sac-like structure that fills with pus or liquid. Cysts can be caused by infection, trauma, inflammation, or clogged oil glands. The most common types of cysts are ganglion cysts, synovial cysts, and plantar fibroma. Cysts can be diagnosed and treated by a podiatrist, food specialist, or foot doctor in Sugar Land.
Ganglion cysts are benign growths that are filled with fluid and attach to a tendon or tissue that surrounds the joint in the foot. They are sometimes asymptomatic, but can also cause a burning sensation, skin irritation, and can make walking and wearing shoes difficult.
Plantar fibroma cysts are fibrous and hard knots that are found deep within the skin of the arch of the foot. They are non-cancerous and can be found in either or both feet. A synovial cyst is a small, fluid-filled sac that occurs on the top of the foot, or over a tendon or joint. These cysts are initially soft but can become firmer over time. A foot doctor or foot specialist near you can treat or remove your cysts surgically or non-surgically.
There are three types of cysts that are common on the feet: ganglion cysts, synovial cysts, and plantar fibromas. Ganglion cysts and synovial cysts share several similarities. They appear on the tops of the feet, usually along a tendon or joint, and they can cause tendon, ligament, or joint damage. The main difference between these two types of foot cysts is that synovial cysts are encased in a layer of tissue that completely surrounds the cyst. Plantar fibromas occur on the bottom of the feet, usually in the instep. The cause is unknown, but genetics may play a part. You can learn more about these types of cysts and their potential treatments in this infographic from Advanced Foot and Ankle Specialists. Our foot doctor offers a range of treatments when home care is not enough, including drainage and surgery. If you’re suffering from foot pain in Sugar Land, make an appointment with us to see a foot doctor right away. Help others understand more about foot cysts and pain by sharing this information.
If you are in need of a foot doctor in Sugar Land, TX, visit Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists or call 281-242-3338.
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