18-year-old Boone, Iowa student Tyler’s passions require him to be active. The high school senior loves sports – his favorites include baseball, track, basketball and football. After graduating in the spring, he plans to attend the University of Iowa where he wants to major in biology and eventually go to medical school. When debilitating foot pain forced him to give up some of the activities he loves, he turned to his parents for help finding a solution.
Tyler’s worsening foot pain was caused by bunions on both of his feet. The condition is a result of a bone deformity caused by an unstable joint that causes the big toe to drift out of alignment. The condition cannot self-correct and often results in pain and discomfort. While bunions are usually seen in older adults, some patients, like Tyler, develop them during childhood.
“I started noticing that my feet hurt in seventh grade,” recalled Tyler. “But by sophomore year of high school they hurt constantly. I couldn’t walk up a flight of stairs without my toes cracking—I would run the 100-meter dash and not be able to walk anymore.”
As a minor, Tyler began researching treatment options alongside his mother, Amanda. They visited a local podiatrist who recommended that Tyler wear shoe inserts and defer having traditional bunion surgery until he was an adult. The traditional procedure suggested to Tyler would involve shaving the protruding bone down and typically came with a long recovery process. When the recommended shoe inserts proved ineffective and Tyler continued to feel severe pain, he decided to explore a second opinion with Dr. Mindi Dayton at the Foot and Ankle Center of Iowa. Dr. Dayton told him about a different option for bunion correction —the Lapiplasty® Procedure.
She explained to Tyler and his parents that Lapiplasty® 3D Bunion Correction™ works to permanently secure the unstable joint in the mid-foot that is the actual root cause of a bunion using special, patented titanium plates. Tyler was encouraged to learn that the procedure would corrects all three dimensions of his bunion. Comparing the treatment options presented to them, he and his parents concluded that this procedure was the right option for him.
Tyler underwent the Lapiplasty® Procedure on his left foot on November 7, 2019. By early December, he was walking without pain in a protective boot. He then had the procedure on his right foot on March 3, 2020 and was excited to be cleared for all physical activities by mid-July.
“The most surprising part of the surgeries was how quickly I recovered. I thought it would take me six months to regain my strength after being cleared for activities again but I’m basically at 100% already,” said Tyler. “It’s amazing to be able to walk and do normal activities without pain.”
For anyone who is suffering from pain and discomfort due to bunions, Tyler recommends doing research and learning from others who have undergone corrective procedures. “The Lapiplasty® Procedure was a great investment for me. Even though I spent a few months recovering, my life is completely changed now that I can move without constant foot pain.”
Only a surgeon can tell if Lapiplasty® 3D Bunion Correction™ is right for you. As with any medical treatment, individual results may vary and this experience is unique and specific to this patient only. There are potential risks with surgery and recovery takes time. Potential risks include, but are not limited to: infection, discomfort from the presence of the implant, loosening of the implant, and loss of correction with nonunion or malunion.