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Bunion Surgery for Teens: Yes or No?

Teenagers live in an interesting point in their lives. They’re still growing and maturing, but they can and do handle increasingly adult responsibilities and expectations. Sometimes this can make it tough to decide what is best for their health and life. This is especially true when you have a teen living with a painful adolescent bunion. Should this be corrected with bunion surgery, or not? That will depend on the teen.

In most cases, bunion surgery for teenagers is unnecessary. Juvenile bunions normally respond well to conservative therapies, which relieves pain and prevents the problem from getting worse. These treatments usually involve shoe changes, orthotics to control biomechanics, and simple home remedies to manage any residual discomfort. As long as these methods work for your adolescent, he or she doesn’t need surgery.

So what happens when these remedies don’t work? Well, that’s when surgery enters the discussion. Bunion surgery for teenagers is a possibility, but it’s considered a last resort. It’s reserved for children and teens who have persistent pain that gets in the way of normal daily activities. The problem is that, because teens are still growing, the procedure may not be as helpful as it would be for an adult. The risk of it not working is much higher. The chances of the bunion returning later in life is higher as well.

Typically it’s best to wait until your teenager’s skeleton finishes maturing before attempting a surgical procedure. This allows the bones to finish changing and the growth plates to seal before invasive work is done. Our team at Absolute Foot Care Specialists will help you determine if bunion surgery really is the best option for your teen. Just make an appointment for an evaluation. You can reach us by calling (702) 839-2010 or through our online request forms.

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