Inova Patient Puts Her Best Foot Forward

Minimally invasive bunion surgery makes recovery easier and much less painful

Thanks to minimally invasive bunion surgery, Vienna Skinner, stretching above, can be active again without pain. She is back to playing volleyball every week.

Vienna Skinner, a 25-year-old substitute teacher and coach from Dumfries, Virginia, experienced pain from a bunion on and off for about three years. As a youth basketball and volleyball coach and a player herself, this was often an issue, and it gradually got worse.

“At first I would do something active and then it would hurt for a bit, but then it got to the point where my whole foot — my toe and the bottom of my foot and leg — would hurt for days after I was active,” Vienna says.

Vienna decided to seek medical advice and spoke with Oliver N. Schipper, MD, an orthopedic foot and ankle surgeon at Anderson Orthopaedic Clinic and Inova Mount Vernon Hospital. Dr. Schipper explained that her bunion would need surgery and he could perform a new, minimally invasive procedure that would make recovery easier with less pain, less swelling, an overall cosmetic improvement and no stiffness.

“With traditional bunion surgery, patients usually complain about two things after surgery: pain and stiffness,” says Dr. Schipper. “With this new minimally invasive option, it’s the same surgery but is performed through small keyhole incisions that keep the joint intact. This means patients have less pain, less swelling, and they’re off narcotics much faster.”

Vienna saw Dr. Schipper in November and about a month later she underwent the minimally invasive procedure. In her past few months of recovery, she has seen the advantages of the treatment firsthand.

“Recovery has been going great,” she says. “I have been cleared for full-impact movement and have been back to running and volleyball every week without any problems! I’ve been tremendously excited about that.”

Dr. Schipper notes that making this type of recovery easier on patients is exactly the reason Inova focuses on innovative techniques such as minimally invasive bunion surgery in the first place.

“We strive to be at the forefront of medicine, and it’s procedures like this that highlight the approach we have throughout the system,” he says. “Historically, bunion surgery has been painful and uncomfortable, and this is just one example of how we’ve been able to enhance patients’ experiences by expanding our services.” 

Don’t Suffer With Joint Pain
Learn more about Inova’s orthopedic services.


  1. LAWRENCE on August 13, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    I would highly recommend Dr. Schipper and his Staff. They were Professional from the minute I called to schedule my 1st appointment. Never a long wait to be seen. Dr. Schipper listens to your concerns and answers your questions. Gives you thorough details of your procedure before and after.

  2. Laura on November 17, 2022 at 9:44 am

    Dr. Schipper gave me a new life when he performed a fourth ankle surgery ( I had had 3 unsuccessful ankle surgeries in FL ) on my right ankle in VA in 2019. It is now Nov, 2022. I have a beautiful straight right foot; I can walk with a walker (for safety reasons) in FL where I now live. I have had no pain in my foot or ankle since waking up in recovery. recovery. No PAIN!!! I consider Dr. Schipper my savior after having had three other surgeries
    by podiatrists in Fl who left me in a boot. Dr Schipper gave me hope from the first moment I met him in his Lorton, VA office. Every day when I put on my Keds to walk to dinner at our clubhouse, I thank God for Dr. Schipper’s golden fingers that gave me a new life.
    And, he’s not a bad sight to see walking into a patient’s room after recovery. I had no problems flying to FL after my surgery; if only I could fly to VA to have my right foot’s bunion removed. However, my 36 year old knee replacement is in need of a revision soon. It was first done by a young doctor, who is now retired from his practice, in VA as well.
    Something about those young doctors in cold VA!!!.
    L. Tampa, FL. And Yes, Virginia, it’s always warm in sunny FLORIDA. Even through hurricane

  3. Marianne on February 28, 2023 at 11:35 am

    I cannot say enough about Dr Schipper. He saved me from flying out to California for minimally invasive bunion surgery. I was up walking around in a boot just a couple days post op and only had to take Tylenol. He is the best and now I can walk without pain!

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