Toe Fusion NOT for you?

April 18, 2014

Have you been told that you need a toe fusion? Although it can provide excellent pain control, a fusion is considered a procedure of last resort for patients with a sedentary lifestyle because it eliminates all toe movement, making it especially difficult or impossible for women who want to wear high heels. It may also limit activities such as running, golf, tennis and jobs or activities where kneeling or reaching up are required. Unlike a fusion procedure, the Arthrosurface Toe HemiCAP® will relieve the pain in your joint and still maintain your natural range of motion. Results from over 20,000 Toe HemiCAP implantations have shown that many patients regained their active lifestyle while finding pain relief in their toe joint.

toe fusion

Below are two videos from patients who both had their fusions removed (known as an unfusion) and replaced with a HemiCAP implant. The first video shows Kathy, who initially received a toe fusion after consulting with her surgeon. As time went on, she found little pain relief and was unhappy with her level of function. She later met with a new surgeon who was able to have her toe fusion revised to a HemiCAP implant. After the unfusion, Kathy was thrilled with the results and was finally able to bend her toe again, allowing her to walk comfortably and confidently. The video that follows comes from Dr. Solomon of Marble Falls, Texas. The video documents one of his patients and the range of motion achieved after he performed an unfusion and converted it to an Arthrosurface Toe HemiCAP.

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

114 responses to “Toe Fusion NOT for you?”

  1. Tracey holt says:

    Can you tell me how long these hemicaps are lasting in patients so far and if many surgeons in the UK are performing them please. I am being advised to have a fusion and I know this is not what I want as it will restrict movement and shoes. I live in Gloucestershire England and would appreciate any advice or help X

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Tracey – yes, there are patients that are over 10 years out from their surgery and still couldn’t be happier. There are many surgeons in the UK who are trained and use the Toe HemiCAP Products. I will send you an email.

      • John says:

        I’m currently trying to make this decision. As an avid golfer, I rejected the idea of fusion instantly. But as a I read more and more about joint replacement, I’m getting more and more afraid to go that route.

        Please send me any literature you have. So much of what I find online is old data.

        Thank you

        John M.

        • arthrosurface says:

          Hi John, We sent you an email a few weeks ago with additional information. Please let us know if you did not receive it.

    • Michelle brandt says:

      Worst decision I ever made was doing this procedure……. now had to have bone graft with fusion…. the partial joint replace works about 1/2 the time. Do your reshearchnpeople.

      • arthrosurface says:

        We are sorry to hear about your difficult experience. As you know, there are many factors that contribute to a successful outcome and your doctor will be your best resource to help you achieve the optimal outcome. As the medical device manufacturer, Arthrosurface is required to document any customer complaint that alleges deficiencies related to service or the identity, quality, durability, reliability, safety, effectiveness, or performance of the device. Should you believe your case involves any such deficiencies, please contact RA@arthrosurface.com. All customer complaints are reviewed for reporting to FDA

      • Monica Lewis says:

        Michelle: I am feeling the same way and contemplating toe fusion. Of course, I too, will now have to have bone graft done. How did yours go?

        • arthrosurface says:

          Hi Monica, Please let us know if we can provide a list of surgeons in your area who are experienced with our Toe Implant Systems.

  2. Sally Small says:

    I too would like to know who in the Uk performs the Toe HemiCAP implant procedure, and if possible speak to anybody who has had the operation. I live in London.
    Many thanks.
    Sally

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Sally – I’m sending you an email with more information. Be on the lookout.

    • Tracey says:

      I think if you are an NHS patient like me, our options are limited to what is provided. I am seeing a Podiatric surgeon from Hereford and he says he doesn’t do joint replacements at all neither did the orthopaedic surgeon I saw in Gloucester. They say they fail too frequently ! I feel forced into a fusion as my only option

  3. David Wheeler says:

    Please could you send me some information too, I’m in Northwest England. Thanks.

  4. Richard Fredricy says:

    My doctor has recommended fusion on my big toe, right foot because the deterioration is such that a joint replacement is apparently not an option. Please send me information re: the toe hemi cap procedure and doctors in Colorado Springs, CO who perform this surgery. Thank you

  5. Elizabeth Swann says:

    Hi, I live in Los Angeles, California and was wondering if I could receive more information on this.
    Thank you.

  6. Mike Ratchman says:

    my doctor is recommending that I have both big toes done. I don’t like the idea. Can you please send me more info.

  7. Craig says:

    My Orthosurgeon has also recommended fusion for my big toe on my right foot, and was hoping to get more information on this procedure, and if their are surgeons in the Chicagoland area, IL, USA who perform this surgery. Thank you very much!
    Craig

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Craig, just want to make sure you received our email

    • Sharon says:

      Hello, I have had a fusion of both joints on my right toe. Of course, it does not bend and I am having problems with rubbing on my second toe. It is shorter than my left toe: therefore, my shoe is too long on my fused right toe. Is it possible to have a replacement on my right toe. I do not like that it does not bend at all. I live in Indianapolis, In and do not know any doctors here that do the Hemocap surgery.

  8. Katie says:

    Hello. Is joint replacement possible after a fusion has already been performed?

  9. Sue says:

    My surgeon has recommended a fusion on my big toe on my right foot. Are there experienced doctors who perform the joint replacement in Austin, Texas? Thank you.

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Sue, We sent you an email yesterday. Let us know if you didn’t receive it.

    • Hanna says:

      Sue, I’m curious if you had your surgery? I’m also in the Austin, TX area and trying to decide between a fusion or arthrosurface and would love to know how it went for you. Thanks!

  10. Mike Ratchman says:

    Anyone know who in San Antonio does this procedure.

  11. Liz mak says:

    My podiatrist suggested fusion on my right big toe. I would like to find out more about the Hemi cap procedure and doctors who perform this in Boston. Thanks.

  12. Patricia Johnson says:

    I recently have a fusion of the Great Toe, unbeknownst to me. My surgeon did not inform me of the possibility that this would happen during surgery. I am 62 years old, active….love wearing 3 inch heels!! He basically tells me it will be “trial and error” as to whether I will be able to wear my high heels again. I am frustrated.
    My surgery was October 31, 2016.
    May I have the names of some surgeons in the Indianapolis and/or Carmel IN area that do this Hemi cap procedure?
    Patricia

  13. Laurie says:

    I am in Sacramento Ca and would like information and any referrals to a surgeon who is an expert in the procedure. Thank you!!!

  14. WALDON ADAMS says:

    In Washington, DC. Is it done here? Also, what if one of the fusions was with a bone graft?

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Mr. Adams, We sent you an email with additional information

    • Carolyn says:

      Hi i live in DC my surgeries 5 of them all unsuccessful. Geirgetown Hospital 4 at Mercy Medical Center jn Baltimore. I advise any and everyone especially women don’t do it..

      • arthrosurface says:

        Hi Carolyn, We sent you an email a few weeks ago with additional information. Please let us know if you did not receive it.

      • Linda says:

        I’m sorry you’ve had so many of the procedures. My doctor said the only option I had with my big toe was the hemi after 2 surgeries to remove bone spurs due to arthritis in big toe caused from a badly broken ankle years earlier). I got a 2nd opinion and was given the same advice. I was quite adamant that I would not have that procedure, so my 2nd opinion doctor advised me to go to physical therapy. Best decision I ever made. That’s been 8 years ago and I haven’t had a single cortisone shot since! All I do is pull and stretch the big toe about 3-4 times a week when I’m taking a warm bath and the muscles/tendons are warmed up. Plus I move my toe in circles to loosen it up. It pops and cracks, but amazingly I have very little discomfort in my toe at all. It’s gotten shorter than the 2nd toe, but I have no pain in it as long as I also use stiff shoe inserts. I also started using dancer’s pads (a godsend). Forgot to mention that I have also developed a bunion on that toe, and still have the spurs. I use to get 3-4 cortisone shots a year. No more. The toe is stiff but as long as I move the joint and gently pull on it, I’ve managed very well. I will never have a hemi. Your experience has further convinced me never to have that procedure done so thank you for that. I hope you can find a solution to your issue. I am a hiker/walker and can’t imagine not being able to walk without pain.

  15. Country Lane Credeur says:

    Hello, I had a hemi implant in dec 2013. I’m still in pain and ortho recommend joint fusion. I’m 41 and still love my heels and being active. Is this an option for me? Thanks in advance!
    country

  16. Marilyn Schwendemann says:

    Live near St. Louis, Mo. & would like information and any referrals to a surgeon

  17. Alexandra Peterson says:

    I live in the UK. I have been advised that my left big toe should be fused. Not happy with this, as I still like wearing heels etc. can you email me details of your,product please.

  18. Kim Wood says:

    Just recovering from operation on my toe to remove the dorsal bone spur. They have said that it may last 5 years or so and I will need a fusion. I live in the UK and would like your email with those that perform the procedure over here. I know the information may be out of date by the time I need it but it will serve as a stepping stone at the time.

    Thank you

  19. I’m 65 years old and love to play golf, ski etc. so fusion was not an option for me. I turned to the Toe Hemicap implant procedure as my only other option and glad I did. I had my surgery Monday February 20th and was amazed that by that Friday I was up walking around and driving. My wife and friends were blown away as I was. I also had bone spurs removed as well. No doubt I was sold on the product & procedure but finding the right doctor is more important and I got real lucky. I spent a couple of months interviewing doctors and found the right one. So happy I did this. I’m back to work and working my way back to the golf course.

  20. Karen says:

    Hi,
    Could you please send me details, I’ve been offered fusion but I’m too young to wear flats for life and I’m still very active. I don’t want to give up on exercise cos my toe won’t allow it. I’m in the UK too.

  21. amy s says:

    I am scheduled to have my big toe fused and just came across your site. Could you please send me doctors in/around the Danbury, CT area that perform this type of surgery.
    Thank you

  22. Erin Seibel says:

    I live in St. Augustine FL and my doctor has said I need a big toe fusion. He will not do a joint replacement. Can you send me any info on this and any doctors in my area that may do this procedure.

    Thanks

  23. Peter says:

    I have had an MTP fusion recommended. Would like to explore your alternative. Could you send me more info and a list of Doctors or hospitals in NYC or the Catskills in NY State?

  24. Can you send me info on this procedure? I live in Rapid City SD.

  25. Nancy says:

    My doctor has recommended a MTP fusion on my right foot, but I would like more information on the Arthrosurface Hemicap after reading of many positive outcomes. I live in the Indianapolis area and would like the name(s) of any doctors who perform this type of surgery.

  26. Karen says:

    Please send me additional info on the HemiCap? I live near Milwaukee Wisconsin. Thanks.

  27. Michelle says:

    Hi I live in Melbourne Australia and I have to have the toe fusion do you have details of anyone doing procedure over here

  28. Vickie says:

    Hello,
    I am 59 and an active tennis player. I have hallux rigidus and was told fusion was the best option to eliminate the pain. Is this an option for me so I can stay active, and can you send me information and doctors performing this in the Oklahoma City area?

  29. Karen Garner says:

    Looking for this option in Michigan. Any doctors here that do this procedure?

  30. Janice Smith says:

    I have part of my big toe fused, along with having6a bunion removed as well in 2012. Is it possible to have this procedure toe hemicap done?

    Janice – Colchester UK

  31. Marise Burgess says:

    Do not want the fusion but the pain is wearing me down. I am in the NYC, Philadelphia area. I am apparently bone on bone now so the surgeon was a bit too excited to offer me the fusion. He said there was an alternative with cartilege replacement but really down played it. Said it was new to FDA and only 85%. Any info would be appreciated.

  32. Ruth says:

    Hi I Live in Brisbane Australia and had a toe fusion in my second and third toe to correct hammertoes. Surgeon cut my ligament and now my two fused toes are turning to the left and my third toe is now crossing over the third toe. I would like to know if anybody on the sunshine coast or Brisbane does this hemicap toe joint procedure as I hate the feeling of not being able to grip the floor as I walk.

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Ruth, we emailed you our local distributor’s information yesterday. Let us know if you didn’t receive it.

  33. Chris says:

    Need info for doctor in Fairfield county, Connecticut or NYC

  34. Maya says:

    Hi I would like more information about this procedure. I live in the U.K, midland area.

  35. Danial Jazaeri says:

    I have a chronic dislocation in my 2nd toe due to prolonged trauma. Was told by my doctor that I would need a PIP toe fusion. I am only 23 and highly active – I would like to retain as much range of motion as possible. I am in Toronto, Canada. Any surgeons in my region doing this surgery? Let me know.

    Thanks

  36. Davide says:

    Please send me more info! I would particularly be interested in toe fusion reversal. I currently reside in Manhattan, NYC. Thanks bunches

  37. Sara Rigler says:

    Please send me information on the implant surgery and doctors that use this device near zip code 95066 (Santa Cruz, CA)

  38. Brandy says:

    I had a hemi implant in my late 20’s. It failed within the first 5 years. Had I known the low success rate with this surgery, there is no way I would have done it. I’m now 39 and have had 6 surgeries on that foot, have nerve damage and have lost almost 3 inches of bone to fix what the implant damaged. It was by far the WORST decision I ever made!

  39. David Ox says:

    The problem I am having with my toe is an ulcer that heals and reoccurs. While this is typical for diabetics I am NOT diabetic.

    I have been fighting for this problem for over two years. I have gone to a number of “foot doctors” who have failed to help me resolve this problem. The toe has become infected more than once. Bandaging and protecting it against a recurrence has become a daily ritual.

    I am currently seeing a foot surgeon, who has been the first to explain the continuing problem. I have been told that time has changed my stride. Apparently my right great overextends and contacts ground behind the first joint. Fusion has been suggested as the ultimate fix. After spending a few days online reading fusion horror stories I am desperately seeking an alternative.

    1 – Has your product been used in my situation before with positive results?

    2 – Can you give me the name of a practitioner in Central Florida (Ocala, Gainesville, Jacksonville, Tampa, St Petersburg) that is practicing your method.

  40. Sharon Harbold says:

    I had a joint replacement in 2014 on my right toe for Hallux Rigid & excision of bone spurs. This didn’t work. Have been to 2 different place for what to do, both say fusion. Please send me names of other places/doctors in my area, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania area, that have used the HemiCap.

  41. Paul smith says:

    Both my big toes are bad and the surgeon has said i need fusion in both toes. Prior to the pain i used to run alot which i want to get back to aswell as my Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. I live in the south east united kingdom. Could you send me some local docs that may be able to help plsase?

  42. Linda says:

    Hi! I have had bilateral toe titanium implants in both my feet. There is a big discrepancy between the first and second toe length. The first
    toes are considerably shorter. Can the hemi cap implant help me? I do so hate to have a distraction arthrodesis of the first toe with graft! HELP!

  43. I am due to have left large toe fusion surgery this Friday. My bunion is getting much worse with constant pain and swelling. My right toe shows signs that I may have similar issues in the near future. I’m having second and third thoughts about this fusion surgery. Now I want to postpone this procedure to rethink my options. Please send me information on this hemi implant ASAP please.

  44. Sharon says:

    I had fusion of my right toe. Having problems with separation and rubbing on second toe. Please advise doctors in my area or close by. I live in Indianapolis, In. I would go to Chicago or Louisville, Ky or any place that was the best!

  45. Tia says:

    I had a Hemi joint replacement in May 2017. Today I still have pain in the joint. Initially my surgeon told me that the pain is from scar tissue and that I need aggressive physical therapy. I have been in PT twice a week since the end of May…..still have joint pain. I went back to the doctor last week and I asked how is it possible to have a new joint and still have pain and no full range of motion. I was then told that when my toe bends that there is bone rubbing against bone which is causing pain. I thought that me having a joint replacement was the resolution for that! Did I miss something or was I taken advantage of?

    What option do I have now? I need to wear my stilettos!

  46. Sarah Becker says:

    I would like to know of drs. who perform this procedure in the state of Kansas or close to Kansas. My email is sbecker2015@gmail.com. thanks you!

  47. Niki Keen says:

    Are there any surgeons in the Dallas Texas area that utilize this product? I am having surgery on the 17th and fusion is a possibility dexpending on how much damage they find.

    • arthrosurface says:

      Hi Niki, We sent you an email a few weeks ago with additional information. Please let us know if you did not receive it.

  48. Joseph donahue says:

    Is there a doctor in my area that does this procedures

  49. Chris says:

    I am interested in hearing if there are any Doctors in the Mansfield TX (part of DFW) area that can perform this procedure. I am scheduled for Fusion but have put it off for many years. I would like to look into this possibility.

  50. betty says:

    would like to find Dr in St Pete, Tampa area.

  51. Elizabeth A. Lane says:

    Hello, I am a mother of 3 in her 30’s from Western Pennsylvania. Back in 2005 I had somehow broken my tibial sesmoid bone. The podiatrist removed it after it wouldn’t heal with walking casts. In 2006, I had the fibular sesmoid bone removed. The Dr. Told me since the tibial sesmoid bone was gone, it put too much pressure on the fibular sesmoid bone and it fractured as well. In 2007, I had a fusion and within 6 months, I had the hardware removed from an infection. I have a very hard time finding shoes that will fit, including sandals. My mobility is restricted completely. Simple tasks are frustrating. I can go on about the stuff that spurs from my foot. I have searched for YEARS for something like this to be used. Is this an option for me? To unfuse the joint and put the hemicap in? I also have been suffering from plantar fasciitis for a while now.

  52. Steph says:

    Please send me more information. I’m particularly interested in big toe fusion reversal and doctors in my area that have experience in this area. I live in Minnetonka, Minnesota. Thank you.

  53. My foot surgeon has recommended fusion of 1st joint right big toe due to arthritic condition now being very close to bone on bone. A year and a half ago this same surgeon did what he called the tight rope procedure on this same joint. I had had bunion surgery years ago on both feet. The surgeries went well and relieved the pain in that area. However the screw from the surgery on the right toe joint started to back out. The right toe also began to pull to the left. The next 2 toes followed the big toe pulling to the left. The surgeon says while doing the fusion he will also fix the next two toes as they are becoming hammer toes and that down the road I’d be back to have these hammer toes fixed. I do not want a fusion of this joint. Please send me information about the hemicap procedure and if thete are GOOD doctors in Sioux Falls, SD doing this procedure. 3 months ago I hd a cortisone injection and it relieveed the pain completely. I’m in a great deal of pain, there is considerable swelling of the toe joint snd psin extending to the 2 toes beside the big toe as well as pain extending to the arch of the foot. Iwear good shoes w/ arch support but it till hurts to walk. My ankles, knees and hips are tight and painful due to the way I’m walking. I neec helpbut do not know where to get it.
    Thank you for any info you can ptovide regarding the gemicap pticedure and where to get it near where I live. I’m will to travel if necessary but hoping there are doctors here in Sioux Falks who are trained and experienced with this procedure.

Leave a Reply