A protrusion on the side of the big toe may indicate a bunion has developed. They can gradually increase in size, and may cause pain and discomfort. Reasons why bunions may develop include genetic factors, wearing shoes that do not fit correctly, or possibly from an injury. Additionally, medical conditions such as gout and rheumatoid arthritis may contribute to the development of a bunion. Some patients find relief for bunions that are not severe by wearing a pad over the area. This may help to protect the bunion from rubbing against the side of the shoe. For severe bunions, surgery may be necessary for permanent removal. If you are afflicted with this condition, it is strongly advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can help you to make the right choice for treatment.
What Is a Bunion?
Bunions are painful bony bumps that usually develop on the inside of the foot at the joint of the big toe. As the deformity increases over time, it may become painful to walk and wear shoes. Women are more likely to exacerbate existing bunions since they often wear tight, narrow shoes that shift their toes together. Bunion pain can be relieved by wearing wider shoes with enough room for the toes.
- Genetics – some people inherit feet that are more prone to bunion development
- Inflammatory Conditions – rheumatoid arthritis and polio may cause bunion development
- Redness and inflammation
- Pain and tenderness
- Callus or corns on the bump
- Restricted motion in the big toe
In order to diagnose your bunion, your podiatrist may ask about your medical history, symptoms, and general health. Your doctor might also order an x-ray to take a closer look at your feet. Nonsurgical treatment options include orthotics, padding, icing, changes in footwear, and medication. If nonsurgical treatments don’t alleviate your bunion pain, surgery may be necessary.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Princeton and West Windsor, NJ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.