In this condition, a large bump forms and grows along the side of the foot at the base of the big toe. At the same time, the toe itself pushes further and further toward, into, and sometimes even overtop its neighbor.
Mild bunions might not give you much trouble, but more serious ones can significantly restrict motion and make even wearing normal shoes painful. Since bunions tend to get worse with time, intercepting them before they start to cause problems is highly recommended.
Most experts agree that bunions are caused by a structural flaw in the feet themselves. In other words, some feet just aren’t as good at balancing impact forces, and greater-than-usual stress on the metatarsophalangeal joint (the one at the base of your big toe) can slowly destabilize the toe over time. This is one reason why bunions tend to run in families.
This means that the cartilage from one side of your joint no longer lines up with cartilage on the other side and this leads to the joint wearing out at an accelerated rate, like a tire on your car that is out of alignment.
The only way to remove a bunion bump and correct any fundamental misalignments is with surgery. However, this does not mean all bunions require surgical treatment. In fact, we try not to rush anyone into making that choice unless it’s absolutely necessary.
What it really comes down to is this: How is the bunion affecting your daily life?
In other words, the bunion may look a little funny. But if it isn’t causing you much pain or disability—you can still wear normal shoes, perform normal activities, etc.—we may only need to manage the condition with conservative treatments. This can slow the progression of the deformity and delay the need for more aggressive intervention.
Conservative management may include some or all of the following:
Signs that surgery might be required include:
There are, quite literally, more than a dozen different ways to fix a bunion surgically, with new research expanding the knowledge base all the time. At Canyon Foot & Ankle, we work hard to stay up to date with the latest techniques, so that we can offer a procedure well suited to your specific circumstances and provide the shortest turn around time to get you back to your normal life.
Whatever the condition of your bunion may be, we can recommend a procedure that will give you the best chance of a successful, quick, and permanent recovery. We also offer advanced pre and post-surgical conservative treatments, such as custom orthotics and laser therapy or amniotic tissue injection therapy, that can significantly reduce your recovery time and start rehab sooner.