Self-conscious about feet – stepping into Cosmetic Foot Surgery

When the subject of cosmetic foot surgery came up in the editorial offices at totalhealth, there was an interesting mix of reactions. Comments ranged from the conservative view, “Orthopaedic surgeons do not do cosmetic surgery” through to the more thoughtful, "Well, it’s a bit of a fine line between cosmetic foot surgery and reconstructive orthopaedic foot surgery, isn’t it?”.

On a more humorous note one member of staff said that he had flat feet and quite often felt self-conscious about them, but this was balanced against the more positive aspect that they “provided an evolutionary trait advantage in the swimming pool”. Whatever the professional view concerning this type of surgery, it’s getting big in the United States and appears to be an increasingly popular option in the UK too. We therefore asked a leading orthopaedic foot surgeon to explain what’s involved. Consultant Foot and Ankle Surgeon of St George’s and The Wellington hospitals, Mr Amit Amin says:

The divide between cosmetic and non-cosmetic foot surgery is extremely blurred, as often deformed toes and bunions will be unsightly to look at, but commonly will also rub on shoes, and cause a varying degree of discomfort and pain. Personally, I never offer surgery to simply improve the visual appearance of the foot; however I am very happy to offer foot surgery for lumps, bumps, toe deformity and bunions that rub on shoes and cause discomfort.

This authoritative article provides a summary of the types of foot and ankle problems that can be treated from bunions to the removal of lumps, bumps and ganglions, as well as links to further consultant-led foot surgery information.

A thickened pad of tissue or a fluid-filled sac (bursa) lying over a deformed big toe. It is caused by an abnormal outward projection of the big toe. Full medical glossary
Relating to the sense of sight (vision). Full medical glossary