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Forefoot problems are often caused by rheumatoid arthritis. Symptoms can be painful causing deformities such as:

Initially conservative treatments such as modifying your shoes or using shoe inserts (orthotics) may relieve your symptoms. If conservative treatment does not work for you your consultant may recommend forefoot reconstructive surgery.

What happens during forefoot reconstructive surgery?

Forefoot reconstructive surgery is usually performed under general anaesthetic. The extent of your surgery will depend on your own situation.

Usually your big toe will be fused making it stronger and straighter. Fusing also allows your big toe to take on more weight as you walk.

Your small toes may also be straightened. Your surgeon will make a small incision (cut) over the top of your toe. They will remove a small piece of bone from the base of your toe so that it will drop into a flat position. They will also repair any ligaments or tendons. Sometimes a pin is used to ensure the toe stays in position. All wounds will be closed with stitches.

Your foot will be wrapped in a firm dressing. We will give you medication for pain relief.

Going home after forefoot reconstruction surgery

Your length of stay in hospital will depend on how well you are able to move around after your procedure. You may need to stay 1 or more nights. You will not be able to drive. Please arrange for someone to take you home on the day of discharge.

Your dressing will be in place for the first 2 weeks. Keep it clean and dry. Continue to take any pain relief medication as needed. Elevate your foot as much as possible. If your big toe has been fused you will need to walk placing most of your weight on your heel. Since your toe will be fixed into one position you may need to wear low heeled shoes.

After 10-14 days you will need to return to have your stitches removed. Your consultant will may recommend using a brace or a cast may be applied.

Please discuss any return to work or sports activities with your consultant.

Most people make a full recovery from forefoot reconstructive surgery. As with any surgery there could be complications:

Specific complications of forefoot reconstructive surgery:

  • Plaster problems
  • Nerve damages
  • Swelling
  • Toe fusion fails
Find your nearest hospital that provides this treatment

67 Lansdowne Road, Bournemouth, BH1 1RW

01202 291866
Overall rating View rating

Shenfield Road, Brentwood, CM15 8EH

01277 695695
Overall rating Good

Warren Road, Brighton, BN2 6DX

01273 624 488
Overall rating Good

3 Clifton Hill, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1BN

0117 906 4870
Overall rating Good
Cardiff and Vale  

Cardiff Bay Hospital, Dunleavy Drive, Cardiff, CF11 0SN

02920 836700

Hatherley Lane, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL51 6SY

01242 246 552
Overall rating Good

Wrexham Road, Chester, CH4 7QP

01244 680 444
Overall rating Good

78 Broyle Road, Chichester, PO19 6WB

01243 530600
Overall rating Good

Rykneld Road, Derby, DE23 4SN

01332 540100
Overall rating Good

Wonford Road, Exeter, EX2 4UG

01392 276 591
Overall rating Good

25 Beaconsfield Road, Glasgow, G12 0PJ

0141 334 9441

Stirling Road, Guildford, GU2 7RF

01483 555 800
Overall rating Good
Haywards Heath  

Burrell Road, Haywards Heath, RH16 1UD

01444 456999
Overall rating Good

Venns Lane, Hereford, HR1 1DF

01432 355 131
Overall rating Good

Foxhall Road, Ipswich, IP4 5SW

01473 279100
Overall rating Good

2 Leighton Street, Leeds, LS1 3EB

0113 388 2111
Overall rating Outstanding

Scraptoft Lane, Leicester, LE5 1HY

0116 276 9401
Overall rating Good
Newcastle upon Tyne  

Clayton Road, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, NE2 1JP

01912 816 131
Overall rating Good
North Staffordshire  

Clayton Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 4DB

01782 382551
Overall rating Good

Beech Road, Headington, Oxford, OX3 7RP

01865 307777
Overall rating Good

Derriford Road, Plymouth, PL6 8BG

01752 775 861
Overall rating View rating

Longden Road, Shrewsbury, SY3 9DP

01743 282 500
Overall rating Good

Staplegrove Elm, Taunton, TA2 6AN

01823 286 991
Overall rating Good

Junction Road, Norton, Stockton on Tees, TS20 1PX

01642 360 100
Overall rating Outstanding
Tunbridge Wells  

Kingswood Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN2 4UL

01892 531 111
Overall rating Good

The Chase, Old Milverton Lane, Leamington Spa, CV32 6RW

01926 427971
Overall rating Good

Wood Road, Tettenhall, Wolverhampton, WV6 8LE

01902 793 269
Overall rating Good

Haxby Road, York, YO31 8TA

01904 715 000
Overall rating Good

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