Arthrex Bunionectomy Patient Stories | Sammy

This real patient was compensated for the time they took to share their personal experience with the Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy procedure.

A former college athlete, Sammy C. continued her active lifestyle beyond school. She’s now a college coach herself as well as a CrossFit® enthusiast who begins every morning at the gym. When she’s not working or training hard, she stays physically active, hiking the trails with her boyfriend, or walking her recently rescued dog, Nova.

Sammy says that competition is in her DNA, and that CrossFit gives her the adrenaline she craves and fulfills her need to compete. It also helps her relieve stress and socialize with like-minded people. So when her foot began to ache and the sharp pains she felt directly over the bumps on her big toe and her pinky toe began to interfere with her workouts, in addition to the physical discomfort she also felt the mental pain of not being in control of her ability to progress in her sport.

Dealing With Bunion Pain

“Being on my feet for long periods of time was dreadful,” Sammy said. “Honestly, it was really painful. The aching would just progress throughout the day, and if I was wearing the wrong pair of shoes, it ruined my entire day.” Sammy knew she needed help to relieve her pain, so she researched bunion treatment options online and made an appointment with a local foot surgeon.

Sammy Finds a Minimally Invasive Solution for Bunions

During the initial consultation, Sammy expressed her concerns about the recovery time after bunion surgery; she wanted to get back to her activities as quickly as possible. Her doctor recommended the Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy. He explained how the procedure would repair her bunion, leaving her with a better-looking foot without huge scars.¹ Sammy was convinced to undergo the surgery when he discussed the shortened recovery time compared to other bunion removal surgeries.¹ ² Sammy says she felt a little nervous, but she was “confident that the Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy was the best option for me.”  

Because the surgery was covered by her health insurance, cost was not a factor in Sammy’s decision to proceed with bunion surgery.

Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy and Post-op Recovery

Soon after visiting her doctor, Sammy underwent minimally invasive surgery to correct the misalignment of the bones in her big toe (or “hallux valgus”) that caused the bunion deformity and the bunionette (also known as a tailor’s bunion) on her little toe.  

Post-surgery, Sammy didn’t feel a lot of pain. She says the first 2 days were a little rough, but she was able to put on a boot and walk around her apartment, take a shower, and start to get back to her normal life after the first 48 hours spent recovering from her bunion surgery. In fact, by post-op day 3, she was back at the gym for an upper body workout.

Sammy’s New Bunion-Free Life

Sammy said that rehab involved building the strength in her ankle to support weight-bearing and physical therapy consisted of curling her toes, loosening her calves, and extending the range of motion. She used a scooter when she needed more mobility, but by 4 weeks, she was able to wear a shoe and walk normally.  

Cosmetically, Sammy loves the look of her foot now. She notes that her two scars are so small that no one besides herself would notice them. And, more importantly, she can wear the shoes she enjoys. Slipping on a pair of sandals she bought before surgery but couldn’t wear because they were uncomfortable and rubbed on her bunion, she says “I knew in that moment, okay, this was worth it.”

Best of all, Sammy says her life is back to how it was before she had a bunion, if not even better. “As far as CrossFit goes, I do [it] every day…I have no pain with any movement. I’m able to run, able to sprint, able to bike, able to Olympic lift with no issues at all!”

Asked what she wishes she’d known before her Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy, Sammy says “I think the greatest thing I would have liked to know before going through this procedure was that the recovery time isn’t nearly as bad as people may be telling you, and even the 6- to 8-week recovery time, you’re still living a good life. You’re not posted up on the couch the entire 6 to 8 weeks. You’re able to do things that you enjoy.”  

Sammy has no regrets after having her bunion removed with the Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy. “I was able to pretty quickly get on my feet, and now currently I live a much greater, happier life.”

References

1. Lai MC, Rikhraj IS, Woo YL, Yeo W, Ng YCS, Koo K. Clinical and radiological outcomes comparing percutaneous chevron-Akin osteotomies vs open scarf-Akin osteotomies for hallux valgus.Foot Ankle Int. 2018;39(3):311-317. doi:10.1177/1071100717745282  

2. Lee M, Walsh J., Smith MM, Ling J, Wines A, Lam P. Hallux valgus correction comparing percutaneous chevron/Akin (PECA) and open scarf/Akin osteotomies. Foot Ankle Int. 2017;38(8):838-846. doi:10.1177/1071100717704941

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Surgeons using the Arthrex Minimally Invasive Bunionectomy procedure have been trained in minimally invasive surgery for bunion correction.

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