1st MTPJ Fusion Surgery Recovery Time

1st MTPJ fusion surgery recovery time can vary, but you may even be walking the same day! Incision site healing can be 2-3 weeks, pain for 6-8wks!We believe in performing a robust fixation where you only need the surgery performed once. This allows for early weight bearing time and high levels of fusion.


1st MTPJ fusion surgery details:

The entire surgery is performed in about two hours and you may go home on the same day. This is performed on an outpatient basis.

big toe joint fusion great toe joint fusion
On these x-rays, the plate and the screws look huge. We have to remember that this is a very thin plate, it is extremely rare for patients to ever feel this plate. I would say that only about 5% of the time in very thin patients do people feel this plate. These are locking screws, so they rarely if ever back out.


Is this surgery covered by insurance?

In most cases this is done for severe pain and is not considered a cosmetic or “elective” procedure. It is generally essential.


Big Toe Joint Fusion Recovery Time
This a fracture of both the great toe and the 5th metatarsal. The big toe joint fusion recovery time on this patient was 4 weeks in a surgical shoe and bulky dressing, then a protective shoe for 4 more weeks.

1st MTPJ fusion Technique:

An incision is made on top of the big toe. Remaining cartilage is cleared away to allow the two bones to heal together. Your podiatric surgeon may use a combination of tools to shape each bone for a perfect fit.


Pros and Cons 1st MTPJ metatarsal phalangeal joint fusion of the big toe joint
There are pros and cons to a first MTPJ fusion. The pros are that it is very predictable procedure that will get rid of your pain! This leads to excellent overall results. The downsides are you will never be able to bend your big toe joint again. But in most cases, if you’re considering this procedure, you probably can’t bend your big toe joint anyway.


Once prepared, the two bones are positioned and a metal plate is placed to hold both bones together. Two screws can be placed across the joint without using a plate. After the hardware is placed, the incision is closed with sutures and the foot is placed in a dressing or splint.



1st MTPJ fusion surgery recovery time:

You will likely be examined at 1 week, two weeks, and sutures removed at three weeks. We will then see you at 2 months and 3 months following the surgery. X-rays may be taken at each visit to evaluate the bone healing and the position of the big toe. Weight bearing status generally begin in an immbolizing boot within a few days of surgery. After a first MTP fusion, you should not wear shoes that put extra stress on the joint for atleast 2-3 weeks.


1st MTPJ fusion healing time fluoroscopy surgery correction
This patient with a metatarsal phalangeal joint fusion had a recovery time of 1 month in a surgical shoe and dressing. Sutures came out at 3 weeks. The patient was then walking for 4 weeks.


1st MTPJ fusion surgery complications that can lengthen healing time:

Common complications specific to MTP fusion include poor or delayed bone healing, infection, and stiffness in neighboring joints. The metal plate used during surgery can sometimes cause irritation. In this case it can be removed after the bone has healed. Finally, scarring within the joint can limit neighboring tendons.

There are complications that relate to surgery in general. These include the risks associated with anesthesia, infection, damage to nerves and blood vessels, and bleeding or blood clots.


bilateral big toe joint fusion for halllux rigidus bunion
This is an example of a bilateral screw based MTPJ fusion patient. This patient had it done many many years ago when plates were not the standard. The downside of this approach is that you have to protect a little bit longer at the beginning. But the end result is just as good!

If I have a first MTP fusion, will I still be able to run?

The only reason you would have this procedure performed is if you were have pain or a problem already, the expected resulted is better function than when you can in for surgery.
Most people with a first MTP fusion do not have a limp after it has fully healed.


MTPJ Fusion Surgeons:

Generally this is a procedure performed by podiatrists and orthopedic foot and ankle surgeons.


MTPJ Fusion links:

Pros and Cons of 1st MTPJ fusions

MTPJ Fusions for the Active Patient.


MTPJ Fusion Surgery Locations:

We are able to accommodate you for a quick turnaround time and result at one of our many Michigan locations.  Come see use and realize how quickly you can expect 1st MTPJ fusion surgery recovery time to take.