Treatment Options for Bunions: Treating Bunions With an Innovative 3D Approach by Paul Dayton
Bunions are an all-too-common problem that many people suffer from in silence. In fact, the condition affects about 25 percent of the population on the United States alone. While bunions are seen more commonly in older women, men and teenagers can also be affected. Many of us recognize the telltale bump on the side of the big toe that a bunion can cause but the problem can have far more serious consequences than just an unsightly appearance.
What Is a Bunion?
A bunion is a bone deformity caused by an unstable joint in the middle of the foot that allows the big toe to drift out of alignment. The condition is progressive and can cause discomfort and severe pain. Many patients who once enjoyed being active – even running marathons – eventually have trouble walking and performing daily activities as their bunion worsens.
What Are the Options a Patient May Have to Get Rid of Bunions?
During the initial evaluation and treatment in office, podiatrists often recommend that patients try conservative options first. These include buying wider shoes, padding or orthotics to accommodate the deformity and reduce pain. If conservative options fail and the bunion is severe, surgical options are discussed.
Traditionally, podiatric surgeons have used a procedure called 2D osteotomy where they shave down the protruding bone of the big toe and then cut and shift the bone over. This gets rid of the cosmetic bump but doesn’t address the unstable joint in the foot that causes the bunion. These procedures can involve a long recovery process where patients may remain non-weightbearing for up to eight weeks. Even after recovering, up to 70 percent of patients who have had traditional bunionectomies can experience a recurrence of their bunion. However, a growing number of surgeons in the U.S. are now performing a relatively new procedure called Lapiplasty® 3D Bunion Correction™.
What Is the Lapiplasty® Procedure and How Does It Work?
The Lapiplasty® Procedure addresses the three-dimensional deformity that causes a bunion by returning the bones in the foot to their correct alignment and securing them with a system of patented titanium plates. This method allows most patients to get back on their feet in a walking boot within days. Patients are generally able to return to their usual lifestyles faster than they might after traditional bunionectomy surgery.
The Lapiplasty® Procedure has demonstrated low rates of bunion recurrence, with 97 percent and 99 percent of patients maintaining 3D correction in 13- and 17-month clinical trials, respectively. Since the procedure was first marketed in 2015, more than 30,000 patients have been treated with Lapiplasty®.
The Lapiplasty® Procedure has been performed on patients of a wide range of ages and from all walks of life. It is rewarding to see their abilities to return to physical activities like walking, running, biking and skiing without pain just a few months after surgery. Many patients also enjoy the cosmetic benefits of the procedure. They are excited to wear sandals without worrying about drawing attention to the bump on their toes after years of dreading shoe shopping.
Be sure to discuss potential risks with your doctor such as infection, pain, discomfort from the presence of the implant, loosening of the implant and loss of correction with nonunion or malunion, which means that the bone does not heal correctly.
As with any medical treatment, individual results vary and experiences discussed are specific to this patient and surgeon only. For more information, including benefit and risk information, visit AlignMyToe.com.
This article is sponsored by Treace Medical Concepts, Inc. Dr. Paul Dayton is a paid consultant of Treace Medical Concepts.
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