Soft tissue surgery
Watch the video
There are a large range of soft tissue surgeries available for problems that can occur on the feet.
Painful and irritating soft tissue lesions can sometimes be surgically removed particularly if conservative treatments have failed.
Your podiatrist or surgeon should have offered all or some of the following things before surgery is considered:
- Alteration of footwear – wider/softer/deeper shoes
- Orthoses to make the foot more comfortable and attempt to redistribute pressure away from the painful area.
- Use of medication to reduce pain levels
- Padding or strapping techniques
- Steroid injection if appropriate
- Aspiration if appropriate
Here are some examples of common soft tissue conditions where surgery may be indicated:
- Plantar fibroma
- Corns / callus
- Digital myxoid cysts
- Viral lesions
- Foreign body removal (glass, wood splinter)
The aim of surgery is to remove the lesion and if appropriate use a skin flap (from tissue nearby) to help it to heal over.
This is generally done under a local anaesthetic but your surgeon may offer sedation aswell or general anaesthesia if they feel this is best. In some cases the piece of skin they remove may be sent off to a lab for testing if the surgeon is concerned about its appearance.
They will use dissolvable stitches if possible and on average you will require 4-6 weeks off work depending on surgery type and surgical site. This will be relevant on a case by case basis.
Of course with all surgery there are risks. The most common risks we may see with soft tissue surgery:
- Pain elsewhere in the foot as the forces have been altered
- Post operative infection
- Delayed healing
- Pain associated with possible scar tissue
- Nerve damage
- Reformation of the lesion