Podiatric Surgery is the surgical treatment of the foot and its associated structures. It is carried out by a Podiatric Surgeon, usually as a day case procedure and often under local anaesthetic. If you think you need foot surgery, this can usually be arranged under the care of the NHS, you will in most cases need to be referred by your GP or you can contact your local NHS podiatry unit for advice.
Most podiatrists who are members of the Society of Chiropodists and Podiatrists are qualified to undertake nail and soft tissue surgery and can also administer local anaesthetics.
NICE Clinical Knowledge Summary - Bunions
NICE have recently updated their clinical knowledge summary (CKS). They recommend referral for podiatric or orthopaedic surgery when bunion pain can no longer be managed conservatively. Read the full guide here
New Commissioning Guide
The College of Podiatry has contributed to a new commissioning guide for the treatment of painful deformed great toe in adults. The document was sponsored by a number of organisations including the Royal College of Surgeons and the development process has been accredited by NICE. The guide lays out care pathways and a quality dashboard. Read the full document here
New Podiatric Surgery Patient Information Leaflets
Please click the links below to download either of our new leaflets which explain the role and function of podiatric surgeons:
What is a Podiatric Surgeon?
The Three C’s of Good Practice in Podiatric Surgery
Podiatric surgeons are podiatrists who have undertaken specialist training in foot and ankle surgery, they typically treat bone, joint and soft tissue disorders. The minimum training period for UK podiatric surgeons is 10 years and includes a mixture of undergraduate education, clinical practice, post graduate education, examined surgical training and supervised surgical practice. To read more about their training click the section: About Podiatric Surgeons
Foot surgery under the care of the NHS
There are presently 46 NHS podiatric surgery units led by Consultant Podiatric Surgeons. Podiatric Surgery is suitable for most patients who need surgical correction of their feet. Commonly treated conditions include bunions, hammer toes, chronic corns, bony lumps, neuromas or even in the most severe cases, flat feet. In most cases surgery is performed under local anaesthesia, although treatment is also usually available under sedation or general anaesthesia.
Many foot problems that cause patients to regularly visit their podiatrist are due to an underlying mechanical fault or bony deformity of the foot. If non surgical treatments are not helping, patients should ask their podiatrist for advice regarding surgery.
Advice for Patients
Patient information leaflets
If you are considering whether or not to have a foot operation, your podiatric surgeon will usually provide you with advice leaflets tailored to your specific operation. We have produced a number of advice leaflets for common surgical procedures but, for personalised advice it is always advisable to talk to a podiatrist or podiatric surgeon.