- A congenital foot deformity (that is, inherited and present from birth), or
- An acquired foot deformity (which is a result of injuries, Neuro issues, muscular imbalances, infections, etc.).
- Physical therapy,
- Orthoses; the use of splints or braces, or other artificial external devices,
- Special footwear and
- A small surgical incision is made at the affected site of the affected foot or ankle, and the affected part is accessed.
- Then extra or unwanted bone wedges and soft tissues are cut off and removed.
- Then the bones are realigned, the soft tissues are released, and the tendons or ligaments are adjusted.
- The realigned bones are held in the proper position and stabilized with tiny wires, pins, or plates.
- The incision is then closed up with small stitches, with a dressing or bandage applied.
- Wisely follow the post-operative instructions given by the surgeon.
- Provide sufficient rest to the corrected foot and ankle.
- Significantly limit weight-bearing during initial days.
- Constantly check with your surgeon on a regular basis for progress.
- In addition, splint, cast, or brace might be used along with special shoes for a specified period to ensure a safe recovery and prevent the deformity from returning.
• Tenderness or pain.
• Reduced ability to move, walk, or bear weight.
• Stiffness in the joint.
• Swelling in the joint.
Certain diseases conditions such as diabetes, stroke, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis affect the functioning of muscles and nerves and can cause tightening of ligaments or tendons resulting in these deformities. In some cases, accidents or injuries can result in fractures and lead to toe deformities.
What are the indications for foot and ankle deformity correction?
There are a couple of notable indications for foot and ankle deformity correction. These include;
- Walking difficulty as a result of an unusual gait.
- Problems with balancing.
- Signs of disability.
- Foot pain or trouble wearing shoes.
- Thick, hard skin and pressure sores
- Inflammation of the bones in the foot and ankle.
- Pain in the knees, hips, back and head.
How do I prepare for foot and ankle deformity correction?
There are a couple of Dos and DON’Ts to help prepare patients for foot and ankle deformity correction surgery. These include;
- A check of general health and review of medical conditions by carrying out specific tests.
- A patient may be asked to stop taking any medications or have changes made to the dosage or timings.
- Make arrangements for safe transport back home after the surgery.
- Abstinence from food or drink for a few hours before the operation.
What are the benefits of foot and ankle deformity correction?
There are a host of benefits in carrying out a foot and ankle deformity correction. These include;
- Getting back a near normal, painless and stable foot and ankle.
- There’s an improved mobility and functioning of the foot and ankle.
- Allows for normal shoe wear.
- Ensures a better gait.
- A cosmetically improved appearance of the foot and ankle.
- The procedure is minimally invasive.
Are there any risk associated with foot and ankle deformity correction?
Just as with any surgery, foot and ankle deformity correction comes with some risks and complications, such as;
- Infection, swelling or stiffness.
- Wound haematoma.
- Problems with healing.
- Blood clots formation in the leg.
- Nerve injury with numbness.
- Restriction to joint movement.
- Shortened foot.
- Development of arthritis later on in life.
- Additional surgery may be required due to non- or mal union.
What are the types of foot and ankle deformity correction?
There are a number of forms foot and ankle deformity may present.
- Flat foot (also known as pes planus): This is a deformity of the feet is characterised by the collapse of the arch running lengthwise along the sole of the feet. In some cases, the arch does not form at all.
- Tarsal coalition: This is a developmental deformity that arises as a result of fusion between two tarsal bones at back of the foot.
- Congenital clubfoot: This is the most obvious and common of all foot deformities. In this foot deformity, the feet is twisted inwards in a way that top of the foot comes in place where the bottom should be.
- Calcaneovalgus foot: In this ankle deformity, the foot appears to be bent upwards; it appears flat with the heel bone turned outwards.