If you have a bony area on the side of your big toe, chances are that you may have a bunion. Typically a progressive disorder, bunions tend to be very painful and result from changes to your foot’s bone structure. Bunions have many causes, including a foot type that’s inherited or an uneven weight in the tendon, causing instability in the toe joint. Other problems that can potentially arise from bunions include calluses, arthritis, and difficulty in walking. Padding the toe or putting it in a splint may be a recommended first step. Surgery involving a corrective procedure to realign the joint may also be an option; another is repairing the ligaments. Consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment options.
What is a Bunion?
A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.
Why do Bunions Form?
Genetics – susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary
Stress on the feet – poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can cause bunions to form
How are Bunions Diagnosed?
Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.
How are Bunions Treated?
- Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
- Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
- Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
- Orthotics or foot inserts
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in North Bellmore, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.