• Cosmetic Foot Surgery

    by Dr. Rahn A. Ravenell
    on Nov 14th, 2016

Over the last few years I’ve heard and read a lot about the rise of cosmetic foot surgery. A lot of this is because of the exposure that foot and ankle surgeons are getting on television shows like Dr. Oz or The Doctors, but lots of podiatrists are beginning to promote themselves as “plastic surgeons of the foot,” which has sparked lots of conversation among podiatrists and patients alike. My views on cosmetic foot surgery are a little conflicted, because I perform reconstructive foot surgery to relieve pain and restore function, but I always aim for an aesthetically appealing appearance of the reconstructed foot.

The interesting and sometimes difficult aspect of performing foot surgery is to discern whether one is seeking surgical correction because of the appearance of the foot or because of pain and sub-optimal function. I get this most often with the woman who has a bunion deformity. I know from experience that some of the largest and “ugliest” bunions are often not painful at all, and some of the smallest almost non-existent bunions can cause debilitating pain. And, there is an art to figuring out which foot deformities require surgery, and which ones are more of a cosmetic concern.

Unlike face-lifts or tummy tucks, recovery from foot surgery can be challenging for the simple fact that you have to walk on your feet. Also, some reconstructive surgery requires you to not bear weight on your foot for a period of time, to allow for adequate healing. I tell everyone who is considering foot surgery that it could take six months to one year to feel completely normal after surgery, depending on the procedure. This revelation usually weeds out those who are simply looking for a cosmetic result.

I am proud of the cosmetic result I achieve with my surgical technique, and I as stated before, my aim is to provide an aesthetically appealing appearance of the corrected foot. However, in my opinion, the goal of foot surgery should be to relieve pain, restore function, allow an active healthy lifestyle, and prevent future problems. If you are in the Charleston or Mount Pleasant, SC area and are having foot pain or are concerned about a deformity, contact Dr. Rahn Ravenell at to discuss options for both the best functional and cosmetic outcome. Call Coastal Podiatry, LLC for an appointment today.




Author Dr. Rahn A. Ravenell

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