Flat Foot Reconstruction Surgery Using the Integra Subtalar MBA® Implant
Flatfoot is a physical deformity where there is an absence of the arch that runs from the heel of the foot to the toes.
A common symptom of flatfoot is pain associated with joint stiffness and arthritis in the foot. In some instances, flatfoot arises from abnormal foot development as a child. In adults, flat foot may be caused by an injury to the foot or ankle that may cause tendon injury or arthritis.
Possible symptoms of flatfoot:
- Arch Pain
- Inability to stand
- Pain in the sides of the ankle
- Muscle cramps in the foot and calf
- Generalized leg and foot fatigue
- Difficulty standing and walking
- Knee discomfort
What are the treatment options?
Treatment of symptomatic flatfoot depends on the severity of the condition. Mild cases can be treated with physical therapy, supportive shoes, shoe inserts (orthotics), and bracing/casting of the foot. The additional support provided by these treatments will not correct the condition, but may provide temporary relief. Severe cases with pain and other problems may need to be treated surgically. There are several types of surgical procedures that are being used to correct severe flatfoot. These options include reconstruction of bone, tendons, or ligaments that may be contributing to the condition. Our foot and ankle surgeon will carefully consider all options before choosing the treatment that is most suitable for you.
Integra Subtalar MBA® Implant
One surgical option is the use of an implant that is inserted into the foot. The Subtalar MBA® implant is a small titanium device that is inserted to improve the motion and structure of the ankle, which can help prevent the collapse of the arch. Our foot and ankle surgeon will evaluate your condition, determine if the MBA implant is right for you, and fully discuss the benefits as well as the risks.
Potential benefits of Integra Subtalar MBA® Implant:
- Decrease in symptoms i.e. pain and tiring of the feet and legs
- Low risk of infection
- No bone or cartilage is removed
- No holes are drilled in bone
- No bone cement is used
- The implant can be removed if necessary
An MBA implant may be for you if:
- You suffer from severe inward turning of the foot and collapse of the arch (hyperpronation). It is designed to correct the improper movement of bones in the foot.
An MBA implant may not be for you if you have:
- Active local infection (any evidence of infection)
- Metal sensitivity or allergic reaction to foreign bodies
- Poor bone quality
- Other conditions that may place you at risk from the surgery
Is my child too young for surgery?
If a child’s foot does not correct naturally, conservative treatments have failed, the problem gets worse, and your doctor is recommending surgery, correcting flat feet may prevent the pain and suffering many people go through from adolescence into adulthood. Surgery could correct the alignment of the bones in the foot, before the bones mature into an incorrect flatfoot position. Correction may enable the child to live a more active lifestyle.
Is an implant the best option?
Conservative options can fail; therefore, surgery may be the best alternative to correct the condition and lessen the pain. Compared to nonsurgical methods, an implant may provide faster healing time and pain relief without cutting the bones in your foot. The implant, which is placed into the foot where there is a natural space, may also be used in conjunction with other procedures to enhance the result. Your doctor can evaluate your specific symptoms and condition and recommend the best option for you.
How long will it take to recover after surgery?
If the MBA implant is the only procedure that is performed, the recovery time is approximately 2-4 weeks and varies from patient to patient. If other procedures are done with the implant, recovery time may be longer.
Is it possible to be physically active after surgery?
Yes, after having MBA surgery, many patients are more active for longer periods because they have less foot pain and fatigue in their legs.