Surgery

Dr. Bills performs outpatient surgery at Mid-Michigan Medical Center-Clare. Dr. Bills does not perform reconstructive or "cosmetic" surgery. If you are considering surgery, please be aware that you must take time off from your job for at least a 3 weeks and up to 8 weeks. Also be advised that some patients may experience more pain AFTER surgery than they originally had due to scarring, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, or other complications.

Bunion Correction

Bunion deformities are painful "bumps" occurring on the side or the top of the great toe joint. Arthritis, or joint pain, accompanies this condition most of the time and is worse in shoes. The best type of shoe to wear if you have this problem is a lace up/tie shoe that controls the heel and doesn't constrict the ball of the foot.

Surgery can consist of simply removing the bump or may require cutting through the bone and moving it into alignment; and if cartilage is damaged, joint implant. Post operative care is usually 4 - 6 weeks and requires one week of complete rest and elevation of the foot. Sutures are removed in 10 - 14 days, and the patient may return to a regular shoe in 3 - 6 weeks depending on post operative swelling.

Hammertoe Correction

A hammertoe is a contracture of one of the lesser toes and is usually caused by a muscle imbalance. After years of being contracted the joints become stiff and can no longer be straightened manually. Surgery consists of removing part of the middle joint in the toe, thereby loosening the tendons so the toe can straighten. Some shortening of the toe may be seen but usually this is not significant. Patients may walk on the foot after surgery but must elevate and rest as much as possible for 9 days to prevent swelling. Sutures are removed in 2 weeks, and patients usually wear loose sneakers at that time.

Neuroma Excision

A neuroma is an irritated nerve usually in the toe sulcus area (just in front of the ball of the foot) that has formed tissue around itself to protect it from the irritant. Very few patients need to have the nerve excised or cut out. This surgery requires mandatory elevation of the foot as much as possible for one week to prevent early swelling. Sutures are removed in 2 weeks and patients can usually wear a sneaker in 3 weeks.

Tumor Excision

Small fibrous or fatty tumors and ganglion cysts can be easily removed as an outpatient procedure and are usually minimally invasive, healing in 2 - 3 weeks. What we have to be concerned about in these cases are residual scars on bony prominences.

Spur Removal

Spurs may form on many areas of the foot and may become painful. If a spur is painful, the only options are to remove pressure from it (shoe gear, padding) or perform surgery to remove the offending spur. Surgery requires elevation of the foot as much as possible for a week. Sutures are removed in 2 weeks and patients may wear sneakers at that time.