Foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons explain why this surgical technique is gaining attention
Rosemont, Ill. (May 27, 2020) – Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) is a technique used by foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons to correct specific foot and ankle conditions with very small incisions. This technique has gained attention among surgeons and patients alike due to its reported faster recovery time, smaller scars, and reduced postoperative opioid use.
Peter G. Mangone, MD, a foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon with Blue Ridge Bone & Joint Clinic in North Carolina, explains the difference between minimally invasive surgery and traditional open surgery. “Minimally invasive surgical techniques usually have less soft tissue stripping, which results in less pain and tissue trauma for the patient. There is not a set length or size of the incision that defines the difference, but minimally invasive incisions are about 75% smaller than traditional open incisions.”
Common foot and ankle conditions that can be treated using minimally invasive surgical techniques include bunions, hammertoes, big toe arthritis, and metatarsalgia.
Researchers in foot and ankle orthopaedics continue to investigate MIS techniques and their effects on patients. A preliminary study published in Foot & Ankle International (FAI) in 2019, found that the MIS approach for bunion surgery improved function and decreased pain in patients. However, in a different FAI study from 2019, patients who had MIS cheilectomy surgery for the big toe joint were more likely to need an additional operation, compared to those who had traditional open surgery.
“Research continues to identify which procedures can be performed successfully using minimally invasive techniques and those that are too complex and best managed traditionally,” Dr. Mangone added.
It is important to note that not all patients are good candidates for minimally invasive surgery. If you have a foot or ankle condition, first consult with a foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon to determine the best treatment option for you.
Learn more about MIS and other foot and ankle conditions and treatments from FootCareMD.
Foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons are medical doctors (MD and DO) who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders and injuries of the foot and ankle. Their education and training consist of four years of medical school, five years of postgraduate residency, and a fellowship year of specialized surgical training. These specialists care for patients of all ages, performing reconstructive surgery for deformities and arthritis, treating sports injuries, and managing foot and ankle trauma.
The American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS) mobilizes our dynamic community of foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons to improve patient care through education, research, and advocacy. As the premier global organization for foot and ankle care, AOFAS delivers exceptional events and resources for continuous education, funds and promotes innovative research, and broadens patient understanding of foot and ankle conditions and treatments. By emphasizing collaboration and excellence, AOFAS inspires ever-increasing levels of professional performance leading to improved patient outcomes. For more information visit the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society online at aofas.org.