Bunions or hallux valgus are a common problem and surgery is the only way to get rid of them. That does not mean that the symptoms can not be managed without surgery, it just means conservative approaches will not get rid of them. There are surprisingly a very large number of options that surgeons have for surgery to fix a hallux valgus.
One of these procedures is the Austin Bunionectomy which is less commonly called a distal metatarsal osteotomy. The Austin bunionectomy is a procedure done on the bones where the bunion is corrected by relocating or sliding across the top of the first metatarsal bone.
The Austin Bunionectomy is generally used to remove the prominent lump of bone (bunion) and to release a tight tendon that tends to the great toe towards the second toe. The osteotomy or bone cut is near the joint, so it is useful when the distal end of the metatarsal needs to be realigned. The Austin bunionectomy is not for everyone with a bunion or hallux valgus as there are so many different bones and issues involved in each bunion. The choice of procedure will depend on how much of each of the different bones and soft tissue are involved and the preferences of the individual surgeon. For example, if the bunion is larger, a Lapidus procedure may be considered.
Following the Austin Bunionectomy, weightbearing is permitted in a surgical shoe, with healing taking around 6 weeks. The Austin bunionectomy is generally well tolerated with minimal complications that are usually easily dealt with if they occur.