Hammertoe is a word that describes a deformity in one of the middle toes of the foot. It's typically caused when the first joint of the second, third or fourth toe contracts, causing the toe itself to bend inward and upward. This creates an appearance similar to that of a hammerhead, and there it gets his name. If hammertoe is diagnosed and treated early enough, resolution of the condition may be achieved through a nonsurgical approach.
However, when left untreated, the toes may often grow so stiff that they resist movement and surgery is often the only option that provides restoration of mobility and function. Hammertoe is caused by a variety of issues including heredity, wearing improperly fitted shoes, chronic wear of high heels, muscle imbalances and contractions of tendons in the foot or toes.
Benefits of Laser Foot Surgery
Laser foot surgery provides correction and relief of painful foot problems associated with hammertoes, heel spurs, and neuromas. Such procedures are typically performed in a doctor's office, eliminating the need for an expensive hospital stay. Noninvasive foot surgeries are common, when today, nearly one in every five experiences some type of foot pain and seeks relief.
The most commonly treated foot issues include not only the above-mentioned hammer- toes, heel spurs, and neuromas, (areas of the feet that lack sensation), but also warts, calluses, corns and other foot pain are also treated. Surgery is designed to reduce pain and increase function and range of motion as well as mobility for the patient.
Lasers emit light and produce modulations or wavelength of frequency of light in order to produce heat. Laser technologies can literally "slash" or open tissues much like a scalpel, but rather than steel, utilize heat to create a surgical opening. Because heat is used, veins and other tissues are immediately cauterized, reducing bleeding.
Short wavelength lasers are known as visible, UV range and near-infrared lasers. They utilize very small micro-explosions to tear apart molecules. Such lasers create a pulse of plasma, or an electrically charged gas, to deliver very precise cuts with reduced surrounding tissue damage.
Laser surgery techniques can be utilized through endoscopic or laparoscopic surgical approaches through very small incisions, rather than incisions made through conventional surgery procedures utilizing a scalpel.
If nonsurgical approaches to resolution fail, a podiatrist, or a podiatrist specializing in laser surgery may recommend foot surgery. During the hammertoe procedure, an incision is made over the affected knuckle/s or joint/s of the toe with the laser. The tendons are then severed and realigned. In some cases, the middle joints of the toe or toes may be fused for added stability. In other cases, small portion or portions of bone may be removed to facilitate joint range of motion. The incision is then closed, and dressings are placed over the incision area.
Cost of Hammertoe Laser Surgery
Laser treatment approaches to hammertoe conditions can save tens of thousands of dollars. Traditional hammertoe surgery, including hospitalization, may cost over $13,000, while laser surgery costs for visitors traveling to foreign destinations including Asia, Central Europe, and Mexico, may save between 20 and 50% on such costs.
Who Performs Laser Foot Surgery Procedures?
A podiatrist who belongs to the American Board of podiatric surgery, the American Board of them dilatory foot surgery, or the American Academy of pain management, or country specific organizations and associations, or trained to deal with not only a number of podiatry issues, but laser surgery approaches in dealing with those issues.
Laser surgery, quite simply, uses a laser beam instead of a scalpel during a surgical procedure. Laser surgery is quite common when performing soft tissue operations and surgical procedures. Technically, laser surgery is the technique that utilizes a laser beam that literally vaporizes soft tissue. Laser surgery has become more common in recent years due to great strides in technology and equipment. Equipment, such as the da Vinci robotic surgical system, allows precise laser propulsion surgery techniques as well as computer assisted surgical techniques.