Brachymetatarsia usually occurs between the ages of 6 and 12, when the long bone of one of the five toes stops growing, ultimately becoming considerably shorter than the rest. This typically happens to the fourth toe and results in the fifth toe growing under or over the short toe. The toe stopping its normal expansion can, in turn, make it tougher to move around or even cause injuries.
Brachymetatarsia is usually caused by a genetic issue, although there have been instances in which trauma has contributed to one toe not growing all of a sudden.
The surgery that fixes this will lengthen the smaller toe but, in most cases, this procedure will only be made as a cosmetic improvement. So how much would brachymetatarsia surgery cost?
How Much Does Brachymetatarsia Surgery Cost?
The Brachymetatarsia surgery will cost anywhere between $10,000 and $45,000 if it isn’t covered by insurance, according to the reports of most surgeons. These costs will depend on several factors including the hospital you’re going to, the surgeon that will take on this procedure, the development stage of the condition, as well as any other additional expenses that might pop up.
This surgery should be left as a last resort, as you can try your luck with non-surgical therapies first.
As long as it is considered medically necessary and you’re under a decent insurance plan, the Brachymetatarsia surgery should be covered by your medical insurance. Before you schedule this foot surgery, you should get on the phone with both the doctor and your insurance plan provider to find out the exact limitations of the doctor and the facility you are going to use and ensure that they are in the network of the provider.
Some articles we managed to find online also talk about brachymetatarsia surgeries that go over the $40,000 price point.
There are also websites on the other side of the price range, like AestheticsinPodiatry.com that talks about surgeries for toe lengthening or toe shortening, with prices between $750 and $1,000 per surgery toe.
Details on the Brachymetatarsia surgery
The cost of brachymetatarsia surgery may be split into multiple prices and fees, including needed medicine during and after the procedure, anesthesia, medical garments, pre and post-surgical care, medical facility charge, and of course, the cost of the surgeon or doctor, among other things.
Before booking a clinic make sure you speak to its staff and ask about the prices you will be made to pay, as each hospital or clinic has its own invoicing procedure.
Brachymetatarsia is a condition that can be explained by the metatarsal of the foot or one of the five long bones of the toes is usually short, which causes a toe to be shorter than the rest. This is most often noticed at the 4th toe of both feet. This cosmetic foot surgery meant to fix this issue will not be possible until the patient has strong enough bones. This is usually the case when the individual reaches the age of 15 to 17 years old.
The toe will be completely healed 6 to 10 weeks after surgery, depending on the technique used. However, there are also cases in which you will need an external fixator device, which translates into up to 3 months until full recovery because a cast will be necessary. Regardless of the type of surgery, you will go for, surgeons will most likely ask you to prepare for 3 months of pause before you can put your whole weight on the heels and walk properly.
Types of toe lengthening surgery used most often
Brachymetatarsia exterior fixator lengthening surgery
The exterior fixator lengthening surgery may be seen as a means to extend the bone, which is a popular method for raising the length of the bone. Throughout this procedure, the doctor cuts the bone, and an exterior fixator is connected to the bone sectors to move the pieces apart gradually. 4 times per day, an individual will modify the gadget to slowly expand the bone to the desired size.
Bone-graft lengthening procedure
The bone-graft lengthening procedure will be done with the help of a structural bone graft that is inserted in the foot of the patient, usually from the heel to the short bone. This will be stabilized with a bone plate and screws and will stay in the food. The length needed will dictate its size.
Toe lengthening sliding bone-cut surgery with or without corns removal
The moving bone-cut lengthening surgery is one of the least common surgical approaches. It involves doing a tilted cut in the metatarsal bone that should make the bone extend, by moving the cut bones one onto another.
Additional info related to this surgical treatment
The cause of brachymetatarsia might be one of the following: the development plate of the bone stops expanding prematurely, injury, infection, and/or hereditary tendency.
Some of the signs and symptoms of brachymetatarsia can be pain, discomfort, as well as a callus on the ball of the foot. This is because the bones bear even more weight than they normally would. You need to look for therapy if you experience discomfort while walking, you have a difficult time putting on shoes, the issue seems to intensify, and/or it’s psychologically humiliating.
Even if you have this condition on both feet, the surgical treatment, according to medical professionals, ought to only be carried out on one foot at once.
The editor of MyBrachymetatarsia.com even made an interesting diary of the whole process she had to go through.
This kind of surgery, like most others, has some associated risks, like loss of a toe, weakness in the toe, too much length added to the toe, rigidity, nerve injury, pain, infection, or issues related to the anesthetic. Your doctor should be able to tell you more about the risks of this toe surgery.
How can I save money?
Non-operative treatments, according to BunionSurgeryNY.com, are readily available, such as putting on supportive customized footwear with arch support or trying anti-inflammatory medications to aid in decreasing swelling and pain.
When it comes to this procedure, like any other complex medical intervention, it is very important to make sure you’re aiming for the best result, in this way reducing any likelihood of complications.
Although money is of importance to everyone, when it comes to your health, be sure to always work with the best, as going for a less experienced, cheaper surgeon might cause you to spend more money in the long run by putting you at risk of complications. This is one of those cases in which a lower quality or less skilled doctor might do more harm than good, opening the way to issues that are more expensive to fix than the money you save.
Be sure to ask your insurer if the brachymetatarsia surgery cost is covered by your health insurance policy. The answer will depend on your plan, however, if your insurance coverage is able to pay for it, you will only be responsible for out-of-pocket expenses like the co-pay and deductibles.