Bunion surgery sounds straight forward enough, and many people would not really think about the issues this type of surgery may cause but the effects can have a massive impact on your life.

If you have been through bunion surgery and feel like you are in a worse situation than you were before having the surgery, we understand that you must feel angry at the advice given to you and that you are in a lot of pain. We can help you to decide if you would like to make a claim for medical negligence as a result of your bunion surgery.

What is a bunion?
A bunion is a bony deformity on the joint of the big toe and as a result of your bunion, your big toe will start pointing inwards toward your other toes. This may make the bone of the foot push outwards as it is attached to the big toe and cause it to stick out. The medical name for a bunion is hallux valgus, which refers to this movement of the big toe. A bunion is a hereditary condition and whilst ill-fitting shoes do not cause bunions, they do aggravate them.

The name given to the surgical procedure to remove a bunion is bunionectomy.

How are bunions treated?
Surgery is by no means always necessary to relieve some or indeed all of the symptoms of pain that bunions can cause. Wearing a wider shoe can often help with this. However, surgery is the only way of bringing the big toe back into its correct position. Amazingly there are well over 100 different possible surgical procedures for correcting the big toe, although probably approximately ten of these are far more common than the others. Which procedure a surgeon decides to use will depend upon several factors, including the age of the patient and whether the big toe is showing signs of bone degeneration.

What are the complications after surgery?
There can be a number of complications following bunion surgery. They are:

• Infection
• The bone healing in the wrong position
• Damage to nerves in your foot
• Continued pain
• Swelling
• Deep vein thrombosis
• The bunion comes back
• Further surgery is needed
• Large amounts of scar tissue

If any of these outcomes happen and you feel you are in a worse position than you were before you had surgery, it can be difficult to accept.

Our experience
Our experienced medical negligence team will be on hand to discuss your situation with you in detail and help you to understand the legal position of your claim. 

We have many years’ experience in dealing with medical negligence claims and you can trust us to give you the best advice possible with regards to the prospects of success.

What will it cost to make a claim?
We always offer a free consultation to discuss your situation and to help you to decide if you would like to make a claim. You will not be obliged to make a claim by coming to see us, and if you don’t decide to take things forward, you won’t owe us a thing. 

We talk to you in detail about the cost making a claim and the various options available to you and we can help you to decide which option is best for you. You can also ensure at the free consultation that you are happy for us to represent you.


Contact our team to discuss your potential claim by email or call 0117 929 0451


Negligent Bunion Surgery FAQs

  • I’ve had a poor result from bunion surgery. Can I sue?

    Anyone can develop a bunion, but generally they are more common in women than men. This is possibly due to the type of shoes some women wear.

    A bunion (or hallux valgus) is a bony deformity of the joint at the base of the big toe.

    Surgery is not considered necessary unless the symptoms become severe and the bunion does not respond to non-surgical treatment such as painkillers, orthotics (insoles) and bunion pads.

    Having surgery does not guarantee a resolution of symptoms (improvement in symptoms is seen in approximately 85% of cases).

    There are always risks of having any surgery and it is no different for the removal of a bunion. Some of the risks of having bunion surgery include: Infection, nerve and vessel injury, a sore scar, swelling and recurrence leading to further surgery. Having any of these results following surgery may not necessarily lead to a successful claim for negligence against the relevant medical professional.

    Prior to undergoing surgery, the treating surgeon should outline the above risks to the patient and obtain the patient’s consent to the surgery.  

    Stiffness and discomfort is not uncommon following bunion surgery and for most people this resolves in approximately 3-6 months. If a person has symptoms for longer than this, then it is possible that the surgery was performed negligently.

    Whenever metal work is inserted, there is always the possibility of it subsequently needing to be removed because of it being prominent, but again this is not necessarily negligent.

    Bunion recurrence and requiring further surgery is one of the main risks of having the initial surgery.

    There are many different types of operations for bunion removal and it is important that the surgeon uses the correct one. If the operation is unsuccessful then it is reasonable to query whether the correct type of surgery was done.

    So, to answer the above question, you may be able to sue for compensation but it is very much dependent on the facts of each individual case.

    If you have any comments to make about this article or would generally like to discuss a potential medical negligence claim, then please contact us on 0117 239 8012 and we will put you through to a member of our specialist medical negligence team.

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