Choosing to have foot surgery is a big decision that could affect your health and lifestyle for years to come. Whether you’re dealing with a small bunionette or severe hammertoes, it’s important to understand your treatment options and how long it may take to recover from any procedure. As such, today we’re going to tackle a question we field all the time: what is the recovery time for heel spur surgery? The short answer is that it depends on the severity of the condition and the type of procedure performed. At Northwest Surgery Center, many of our patients are able to return to full fitness and mobility after just a few weeks following heel spur surgery. We’ll explain how this is possible here:
Heel Spur Treatment Options
A heel spur is essentially a build-up of excess calcium that forms at the bottom of the foot under the heel. However, not all heel spurs are created equal. Some are so minor that an individual may not even notice it. Others are so painful and debilitating that they can alter the way a person walks and lead to further joint/muscle issues in the hips or back. The upshot is that there are different ways to treat heel spurs depending on their severity.
In most instances, medical professionals will at first recommend a number of nonsurgical methods that may sometimes be able to alleviate heel spur pain and reduce inflammation. These include actions like:
- Icing the affected area.
- Switching to more comfortable footwear or adding cushions to your shoes.
- Physical therapy –– including specific foot stretches.
- Weight loss.
- Rest. (Particularly for athletes or highly active individuals.)
- Anti-inflammatory medication.
For some people, a combination of these treatments may prove effective. However, others may struggle to make progress with nonsurgical techniques depending on the severity of the heel spur and other health factors.
Minimally Invasive vs Traditional Foot Surgery
Foot surgery may not be the first option your doctor recommends for dealing with a heel spur, but if pain persists despite other treatments, and/or if the heel spur becomes associated with plantar fasciitis, surgery may be your best option moving forward.
At this point, it’s key to learn the difference between minimally invasive heel spur surgery and traditional methods. During a minimally invasive heel spur surgery, the surgeon will make only a very small incision to correct the pain point. This is an outpatient procedure, and most of our patients are able to leave the operating room under their own two feet and resume normal activities almost immediately. Total recovery time for minimally invasive heel spur surgery may last anywhere from two-to-four weeks. Though, a postoperative shoe and/or orthotics may be necessary following the procedure.
To learn more about minimally invasive surgery, download our free “Guide to Minimally Invasive Foot & Ankle Surgery”!
By contrast, traditional foot surgery could leave severe scarring and require extensive recovery time –– sometimes several months depending on the nature of the procedure.
At Northwest Surgery Center, our expert team is always available for consultation. We’ll review your case and help you find a solution that will address your foot-pain problems for good. You can contact us here to learn more about our cutting-edge methods or to schedule an appointment ASAP.