Medial Cuneiform Opening-Wedge Osteotomy for the Treatment of Hallux Valgus

Jason S. Ahuero, John S. Kirchner, Paul M. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: While proximal first metatarsal osteotomy combined with distal soft tissue realignment is accepted as standard treatment of moderate to severe hallux valgus with metatarsus primus varus, none of the described proximal metatarsal osteotomies address the hyper-obliquity of the first metatarsocuneiform joint. An opening-wedge osteotomy of the medial cuneiform can potentially correct the 1-2 intermetatarsal angle (IMA) in addition to normalizing the hyper-obliquity of the first tarsometatarsal (TMT) joint. The purpose of this study was to retrospectively review the early radiographic and clinical results of the use of a medial cuneiform opening-wedge osteotomy fixed with a low-profile wedge plate combined with distal soft tissue realignment for the treatment of hallux valgus. Methods: Fourteen feet (13 patients; 2 male and 11 female, average age 56 years, range 22-75) with hallux valgus underwent an opening-wedge osteotomy of the medial cuneiform fixed with a low-profile nonlocking wedge plate combined with distal soft tissue realignment. The mean preoperative hallux valgus angle (HVA) was 32 degrees and the IMA was 16 degrees. HVA, 1-2 IMA, proximal first metatarsal inclination (PFMI), and presence of osteoarthritis of the first TMT joint were assessed on preoperative and final postoperative radiographs. Final postoperative radiographs were also evaluated for radiographic union and hardware failure at an average of 7 months (range, 3-19 months) postoperatively. Results: A mean intraoperative correction of 19 degrees and 7 degrees was achieved for the HVA and IMA, respectively. The mean HVA was 22 degrees and the mean IMA was 11 degrees at the time of final follow-up. At final follow-up, a recurrence of the deformity was observed in 12/14 feet. There were 2 nonunions—one plate failure and one screw failure. No first TMT joint instability or arthritis was observed. All patients were ambulatory without assistive device in either fashionable or comfortable shoe wear. Conclusion: Medial cuneiform opening-wedge osteotomy resulted in unreliable correction of HVA and IMA at short-term follow-up with a high rate of early recurrence of hallux valgus deformity and a complication rate similar to that of the Lapidus procedure. This procedure cannot be recommended for addressing hallux valgus in the setting of increased obliquity of the first TMT joint. Level of Evidence: Level IV, case series.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalFoot and Ankle Orthopaedics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2019


  • bunion
  • forefoot osteotomy
  • hallux valgus
  • metatarsus primus varus
  • midfoot osteotomy
  • opening-wedge osteotomy
  • proximal first metatarsal inclination angle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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