Bunion Surgery Without Bone Screws

22 May

A bunionectomy (the repair of a bunion deformity) is one of the most common outpatient procedures performed by podiatric surgeons like those at PA Foot and Ankle Associates.

There are a number of different kinds of surgeries to repair bunions, depending on the patient’s condition. In most cases, an incision is made on the top or side of the big toe, and parts of the bone and soft tissue are either removed or realigned. The bones are held in place with surgical bone screws, a process called fixation. The surgery restores normal function and movement to the big toe, joint, metatarsal, tendons, and soft tissue, relieving pain and discomfort.

Bone fixation is necessary so the patient can get back on their feet as soon as possible and spend less time in a surgical boot. Without fixation of any kind, a patient would have to stay off of their feet for weeks after bunion surgery until the bones in their feet were capable of bearing their full body weight.

In 90% of cases, bunion surgery with screw fixation is successful and the patient has no problems. But for some, the head of the screw or the threads can cause irritation and soreness, requiring a 2nd, minor procedure to remove the screws from the bones.

No Surgical Screws

Dr. Thomas Rocchio at PA Foot and Ankle Associates takes a no-screws approach to bunion surgery, yet his patients are back on their feet quickly. His secret is SonicPin, a system which uses a specially designed drill to prepare the bone site, and a liquid polymer to fixate the bones. It offers all of the strength of screw fixation, with none of the potential side effects.

SonicPin is loaded into a hand piece, which is inserted into the bone. Then, the SonicPin is melted via sonic vibrations. Within seconds, the liquid polymer flows into the area to be fixated, and cools almost immediately.  As the bones heal, the polymer is easily absorbed into the patient’s body with no side effects.

Watch the bunionectomy video below to see how Dr. Rocchio uses SonicPin.


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