Specialised podiatry services and surgery for
patients on the Gold Coast and Tweed


Dr Paul Butterworth is a highly trained foot and ankle surgeon. Dr Butterworth is dedicated to providing quality foot surgery and treatment for patients of all ages on the Gold Coast and Tweed regions

Dr Butterworth has extensive foot surgery experience in Australia and overseas, having completed foot surgery residencies in the UK and the USA

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Dr Butterworth’s specific expertise is in revision surgery for previously failed foot surgery and the surgical correction of common podiatric complaints such as: Bunions (hallux valgus), osteoarthritis of the great toe (hallux rigidus), hammertoes, ankle sprains, Morton’s neuroma and plantar and posterior heel pain. Surgery is performed under either local or general anaesthetic, as day stay surgery



Hallux Rigidus




Revision surgery





Q: What procedures do you cover?

A: Anything that is related to foot and ankle pain or deformity.

Q: Do you see uninsured patients?

A: Yes, both insured and uninsured patients are welcome

Q: Is foot surgery painful?

A: Pain is very much dependant on the individual; what one considers painful another may not and there is no simple answer to this question. What is known, is that the minimal incision techniques employed by Dr. Butterworth allow for less swelling and a faster recovery for patients. With most surgery performed as day stay ambulatory surgery, patients are usually mobile following surgery which further decreases swelling and pain. Furthermore, exceptional advances in pain medication both during and after surgery aid in a reduction in post-operative pain for patients undergoing foot surgery.

Q: How much will it cost?

A: Consultation fees are rebated under Podiatry extras tables for patients with appropriate health insurance. New patient appointment fees range from $110 to $190 and include a thorough examination of the patient’s presenting complaint as well as their medical history. This fee also covers written feedback to the referring practitioner, the patient’s GP and any other relevant specialist or allied health practitioner involved in the patients’ care. Communication is the key! Health insurance coverage of hospital costs varies between insurers. A few insurers pay only the default amount and others cover 100% of costs. Patients are provided with a quote prior to surgery so they can investigate costs with their health insurance provider prior to making any decisions about their surgical episode. Patients also have the option of transferring to another insurer if their current insurer provides poor cover, without any waiting period.

Q: How long will I be off my feet?

A: Most foot surgery allows patients to be on their feet immediately following the procedure. In these instances, patients are expected to wear a protective post-operative shoe over their bandaging in order to protect the surgical site. In the first 3-7 days, patients are expected to rest as much as possible even when they are able to walk. At your first post-operative review (approximately 7 days following the procedure), your surgeon will discuss with you your progress and anticipated recovery, as well as your progression into normal footwear such as runners and flat casual shoe gear. For the majority of patients, a return to normal footwear occurs at 3 weeks following the procedure although this does vary from patient to patient.

Q: When can I drive?

A: Generally speaking, no patient should drive a motor vehicle in the first week following surgery. From then on, it is very much dependent on the type of procedure performed. The average time taken off driving is 3 weeks

Q: When can I fly?

A: Not in the first week following surgery. From this point on, the decision to fly is made on an individual basis for each patient and is very much dependent on the procedure performed and the needs of the patient. Flying too soon following surgery can prolong swelling and may theoretically increase the risk of blood clots in the legs (deep vein thrombosis)

Q: When can I go back to work?

A: If you work at a desk and there is minimal time spent on your feet you may expect to return to work as early as one week following your procedure although you may be required to elevate your operated foot for a period of 15 minutes each hour in order to reduce swelling. However, if your job involves regular walking, lifting or manual labor, your time off will be considerably longer. It is always beneficial, if possible, that you work from home until you are back into normal footwear and able to walk without discomfort. If sick days are available, it is wise to use these in the weeks following your procedure.

Q: Are there any options other than surgery?

A: Yes. Even if conservative treatment (such as orthoses and physiotherapy) has been unsuccessful, you do not have to undergo elective foot surgery. There is always the option to delay surgery or not have surgery performed if you:  feel the risk outweighs the benefits  feel the cost outweighs the benefits  are able to tolerate your foot problem  are unable to commit to the post-operative instructions given to you  cannot take time off work/driving  have a medical condition that places you at greater risk for complications  would prefer to try alternative treatments (such as acupuncture)

Q: What are the possible risks of having foot surgery?

A: Elective foot surgery is very safe although there are certain risks that patients must be made aware of, regardless of the rarity with which complications occur. The risks of foot surgery are very similar to those risks posed by having other surgery, such as infection and deep vein thrombosis. There are also risks associated with having certain medicines during and after your surgery, such as the possibility of nausea and vomiting. Any risks associated with surgery are explained to the patient during their pre-operative consultation at which time written consent is given. Absolute care is taken to ensure that consent to undergo surgery is only given once all questions have been answered to the patient’s satisfaction and all possible risks have been explained.

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