Stopping work for a hallux valgus operation

Dr. Julien Lopez explains everything there is to know about medical leave for a hallux valgus operation: duration…

Hallux valgus is one of the most common foot pathologies. However, this deformity is still poorly known to patients: pain, recurrence, long-term recovery... Aware of these concerns, Dr. Julien Lopez does everything possible to relieve his patients and guarantee them a quick and effective recovery from hallux valgus surgery.

Foot onion operation: Stopping work and other criteria needs to be considered

During the foot onion operation, patients are often concerned about stopping work and its duration. It can be disabling for many patients since it leads to a temporary disability and the limitation of certain activities. Long walks, driving, sports and work will not be recommended immediately after the intervention.

For hallux valgus surgery, a stopping work is not mandatory. It is indeed possible to continue work if you have the possibility of working from home. In addition, if your work is sedentary with little walking such as an office job, it is possible to return to work after 2 or 3 weeks, depending on the level of pain experienced. In general, the average duration is 6 weeks. In all cases, resuming work does not endanger the result of the operation but it can increase pain and discomfort. This can vary according to several criteria:

  • The surgical technique used (traditional surgery, percutaneous surgery or mixed surgery)
  • Nature of work and travel patterns
  • Other potential health problems
  • The severity of the deformity to be surgically corrected

Hallux valgus operation: duration of stopping work

In the context of the hallux valgus operation, the duration of medical leave varies according to many criteria.

The surgical technique used

The duration of medical leave for hallux valgus surgery is first of all likely to evolve according to the surgical actions performed. An operation carried out through traditional surgery, for example, will lead to a longer stopping time than that caused by percutaneous surgery. The surgical techniques that can be used in the case of a hallux valgus are usually traditional surgery, percutaneous surgery or mixed surgery (combination of minimally invasive and percutaneous surgery).

The nature of the patient’s work

Stopping work after the surgery of the hallux valgus recommended by the surgeon also depends on the nature of the patient’s work and the transport used to get there. Indeed, although percutaneous surgery allows a faster recovery and a shorter immobilization, certain gestures remain prohibited to guarantee complete healing of the foot.

For example, it is not recommended to stand for long hours after surgery. Indeed, walking is possible as soon as the operation and dressing are performed at the clinic. This allows you to keep the big toe in axis, it is possible to press the foot thanks to the medical shoe. It is also necessary to have rest periods by keeping the foot raised in order to promote complete healing. Prolonged walking for more than one hour may cause an increase in foot swelling and additional pain. If your job requires you to walk for long periods, the length of time you need to stop work for may be extended.

Thus, the duration of medical leave will be much shorter (about 28 days) if the patient is engaged in sedentary activity and if his transport conditions are easy. Conversely, in case of physical work or long journeys requiring a lot of walking and standing for long periods, the duration you could be prescribed by the surgeon can be up to 60 days.

Adjustment of the duration of the judgment

In the event of a hallux valgus operation, it is also possible to adapt the type of return to work by arranging this through your employer (temporary shift arrangements, working from home).

As a rule, the operation of the hallux valgus is accompanied by medical leave for a period of at least 15 days after the intervention. The foot needs rest during the immediate post-operative phase to ensure full recovery and rapid recovery.

At the end of the 3rd postoperative week, it becomes possible to consider a resumption of activity in case of professional activity in a sitting position, without moving and without carrying any load. In case of physical activity or requiring a lot of travel, Dr. Julien Lopez can prescribe a 100% medical leave for a period of 6 to 8 weeks.

Stopping work and hallux valgus: a decision made by the surgeon

Stopping work for hallux valgus and its duration should be discussed with the patient and evaluated prior to the intervention during the preoperative consultation. Only an experienced surgeon specialized in foot surgery can advise you on the most suitable procedure. Julien Lopez systematically conducts a first consultation to determine the extent of the deformation and the appropriate treatment. Medical imaging exams (radiography, MRI, scanner, ultrasound, etc.) can be used in order to have more visibility and information. After this step, the surgeon will explain in detail the surgical technique used and its advantages and disadvantages. Dr. Julien Lopez will then give you all of the rules and procedures to follow during the postoperative phase: rehabilitation, resumption of activities, dressing… It is only after all these steps that he will be able to inform you about the recommended time off work following the hallux valgus operation.