When Is Foot Surgery Needed?
By Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic, PC
November 15, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Foot Surgery  

When would you need foot surgery? Your Kalispell podiatrist, Dr. Esther Barnes, says reasons and circumstances vary. However, generallyFootHealth people need an operation to reduce pain, correct structural deformity and improve an improper gait. If you're concerned about how your foot looks, feels, or functions, contact Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic for a precise diagnosis and treatment.


Does every foot problem require surgery?

The answer is no. In fact, your Kalispell podiatrist believes many other treatment options optimize lower extremity function and comfort. At Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic, Dr. Barnes has an on-staff pedorthist to craft special footwear and orthotics (shoe inserts) to cushion wounds, correct gait problems, accommodate deformities, and more.


Situations requiring surgery

Only your podiatrist can determine if you need foot or ankle surgery, its type and how you'll recover. Dr. Barnes will examine your foot and gait, do specialized X-rays or other imaging and consult with your primary care physician about your medical history as needed.

The American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) outlines many kinds of foot and ankle operations, many of which may be performed in-office on an outpatient basis. They include:

  • Bunionectomy to remove the bony bump associated with the base of the big toe. This operation may re-align the toe, too.
  • Fusion surgery removes the cartilage from a foot or ankle joint and adds pins, screws, or plates to stabilize it.
  • Toenail removal corrects an ingrown toenail or one severely damaged by traumatic injury. Matrixectomy destroys the nail bed so the nail cannot grow again.
  • Heel spur removal often accompanies the treatment of an inflammatory condition called plantar fasciitis.
  • Hammertoe correction straightens this deformity common to diabetics. A wire or implant maintains the new position of the toe.
  • Achilles tendon release actually lengthens a tight and painful tendon that connects the calf muscle and heel.
  • A neuroma surgery removes benign growths of the nerves in the ball of the foot. This operation relieves pain, tingling and numbness.


After surgery...

The team at Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic will help you recover from your foot surgery. Whether you need pain medication, supportive footwear, crutches or other items and services to maximize your foot and ankle function, expect a care plan customized to your needs and overall health.


Find out more

Please contact Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic in Kalispell, MT, if you have a foot or ankle problem. Usually, early intervention avoids surgery. Count on Dr. Barnes's expertise and compassionate attitude to guide you in the proper direction. Call today for a consultation: (406) 755-2818.


Contact Us

Office Hours:
UPDATE 3/23/20: In attempt to maintain the safety of our patients, employees, and the community, the office is physically closed, other than for the care of patients with urgent concerns / emergenices only. Attempts will be made to return phone calls Monday through Thursday from 9AM to 1PM. Please use the "Request an Appointment" resource above to request an appointment. If an established patient, we encourage you to log into the Patient Portal and send a message to Dr. Barnes or the office with any questions or concerns. Thank you.

TeleHealth and Tele-Visits in the time of COVID-19

Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic, PC has initiated a TeleHealth Service during the COVID-19 Pandemic for a number of reasons:

1.) Our top priority has always been, and continues to be, Patient, Employee, Community Health and Safety.

2.) With the primary goal of triaging, or prioritizing what's urgent and what's not, Dr. Barnes seeks to help patients with the foot concerns over the phone or computer. Caring for patients in this way, and arranging for visits in clinic if necessary (infections, ulcerations, injuries) and in a controlled environment, she hopes to do her part in allowing to the Urgent Cares and Emergencies Rooms help those with needs related to the virus. 

3.) Although Dr. Barnes obviously cannot physicially treat you or other patients over the phone or computer, she can hopefully see if your concern would be best treated physically, and arrange for this to be done. If she can help give you direction and advice over the computer or phone, she will do so. This particularly applies to you if you have foot pain, as many treatment options can be relayed in this way (stretches, shoe recommendations, orthotic recommendations). 

4.) During this time of anxiety, stress, and uncertainty, Dr. Barnes wants to do her part in helping you do the things you need to do (caring for a loved one, running outside for stress relief, or walking on a treadmill at home, for example) without foot pain interfering. She does't want you to have to wait months or an indefinite period of time for you to get back on your feet! "CLICK HERE TO REQUEST A TELEVISIT."