Surgery Negligence

Negligent Bunion Surgery

If you have undergone bunion surgery which you believe was negligently performed, you need to contact a solicitor as soon as possible. This is because you may well have been the victim of a substandard level of care, meaning you will be entitled to compensation for the pain and suffering you have experienced.

Surgical treatment for bunions

A bunion is when the big toe angles inwards towards the second toe, causing the first metatarsal to become misaligned. In time this will force the joint at the base of the big toe (called the metatarsophalangeal or MTP joint) to stick out from the side of the foot. This deformity is known as a bunion or, in medical terms, a hallux valgus.

Bunions typically lead to a degree of discomfort, often preventing someone from walking long distances. Furthermore, bunions can deteriorate if left untreated, so it is a good idea to seek medical advice. As long as a bunion is not severe, non-invasive treatment can prove effective, with measures such as bunion pads, orthotics and medication all able to alleviate symptoms. However, if there is a significant deformity and/or a bunion is affecting your quality of life, medical professionals may suggest surgical intervention. This is the only way to actually correct a bunion.

There are a number of surgical procedures available to suit different problems; the type of operation will be determined by your individual condition. The most common form of bunion surgery is an osteotomy, whereby the bony lump is removed and the bones within the foot and toe realigned. Other options also include distal soft tissue realignment, arthrodesis and excision (Keller's) arthroplasty.

Bunions and surgical error

Bunion surgery is considered to be around 85% successful in those who have it. It may not, therefore, totally rectify your problems. This is simply an accepted fact of bunion surgery which can be complex, particularly if the deformity is severe.

However, there are unfortunately times when mistakes made during bunion surgery actually cause a patient's condition to deteriorate. This may happen if a surgeon fails to display the necessary skill, fails to carry out the necessary corrections or causes further damage (for example to the bone or tendons) without noticing. Such medical errors can have devastating consequences for the patient concerned, as their pain and discomfort will only increase, while additional operations may be necessary in order to repair the complaint. It is also possible that permanent damage is done.

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