Foot and Ankle Surgery

Foot and ankle surgery stands as the sub orthopaedics speciality and podiatry speciality. These surgeries are performed to treat and deal with the prevention of disorders associated with the foot and ankle. This surgery is recommended only as the last option after trying the regular and conservative approaches get failed to relieve the symptoms.

Need for the Surgery

Surgery of foot and ankle are not needed most commonly. However, the surgery may be needed on some of the factors, like,

  • The expected needs
  • Severity of the symptoms like pain and its impact on the lifestyle
  • Response to the treatments undergone, including special footwear, orthoses drugs, etc.

Usually, there are certain medical conditions that may result in need for the foot and ankle surgery, like archilles tendon disorders, ankle arthritis, bunion, hammer toes to list a few.

Types of the Surgeries

Bunionectomy – This surgery is performed to remove the deformalities of foot and ankles and also to treat arthrodesis or joint spaces fusion towards surgical reconstruction and inflammatory processes.

Arthroplasty – The objective of the arthroplasty is to remove the deformed joints that is between the bones of the toes that stands significant for flexibility of the joints.

Arthrodesis – This surgery treatment fuses the phalanges together to enable more stable toe. After this surgery, flat shoes only must be used.

Triple Fusion – This treatment is performed for fusion of three joints called calcaneocuboid, subtalar and talonavicular joints.

Ankle Replacement – This surgery is performed to take out the ends of the worn-out talus bone and tibia bone and replace with artificial metal or plastic ends.


Foot and ankle surgeries are choices of many because of these advantages.

  • Better function
  • Relief from long lasting pain
  • Better mobility
  • Better appearance of the feet
  • Improved choice of footwear to the comfort levels

There are also certain disadvantages to know prior to the surgery.

  • Joint replacement with hard wearing is not as potential as natural joints.
  • Some of the surgeries may restrict movement of the joints
  • Some of the surgeries do not allow proper use of the foot


Technically small nerves around the incision may get damaged resulting in patches of numbness. Sometimes foot may not be used normally for some time, because of the time taken to fuse the joints together. If the fusion of the joints is not successful, further surgery may be needed.


Technically possible complications after the foot and ankle surgery, though rare, are like the following.

  • Infections
  • Increased pain
  • Unpleasant smell
  • The surgical area feels to be warmer
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling


Recovery period is varied for different surgery procedures related to foot and ankle surgery.

Post Surgery Care

Most of these surgery cases can be performed as an outpatient basis and the individual may return home on the same day. After the surgery foot is covered with the bandage and most commonly Velcro surgical shoes are needed to wear for 4 to 6 weeks.