The main goal of hammertoe surgery is to re-align the crooked toe into an improved anatomic alignment. If a pin is used, it may be protruding out the end of the toe for a temporary period of time or there could be an implant in the toe. This allows your surgeon to track healing progress, and to easily remove it when it’s not needed any longer. Typical hammertoe surgery is done in an outpatient surgical facility with IV conscious sedation.
For the first few days after surgery, you should keep your foot elevated and applying ice as your doctor recommends. You should keep your foot dry and stay off your feet for 3 to 5 days after your surgery. You should use a walker, cane, knee scooter or crutches to get around. Depending on your specific hammertoe surgery, your doctor may allow you to walk on it with a surgical shoe or boot right after surgery. Follow your doctor’s recommendations exactly for any medications you have been given after surgery. You should expect swelling and some pain after surgery. If you experience pain out of proportion, don’t hesitate to contact the office.
Signs of Infection
Be alert for signs of infection, which can include fever, chills, and a feeling of persistent heat or warmth in the affected foot. Persistent or worsening pain can also be a sign of infection, as can a swelling in the calf of the affected foot.
After the dressings are removed, you can return to wearing shoes once your doctor gives you the okay. Most patient’s sutures are removed 2-3 weeks after surgery. Dr. Butler at Cornerstone Foot and Ankle notes that 60 percent of patients will be able to resume wearing shoes in 4 weeks, with 90 percent able to wear shoes at 8 weeks after surgery. Cornerstone Foot and Ankle recommends wearing athletic shoes or soft moccasin or oxford-type footwear, and gradually putting more weight on your foot and walking farther as your incision heals. Do not wear high heels for the first 3 to 4 months. You should also wait 1 month to begin driving again if this is a right foot surgery, and refrain from driving until you feel confident that you can come to an emergency stop. If the surgery is on a left foot the patient is usually allowed to drive after a few days.
Cornerstone Foot & Ankle is a full service foot and ankle specialty office with locations in Sewell, Cherry Hill, Marlton, Mt. Holly, and Glassboro; serving the South Jersey region. We offer a full suite of services including surgery, fracture care, fungal nail care, diabetic foot care, pediatric podiatry, custom braces and orthotics, wound care, limb salvage, and treatments for arch pain, heel pain, and sports injuries; just to name a few. If it hurts below your knee, we can help you! CALL NOW or request your appointment online TODAY!