If your big toe is gradually moving toward your second toe and creating a bony, and often painful, protrusion, you’re developing a bunion. This condition is progressive and presents both aesthetic and comfort problems, making early intervention a good idea. At Arizona Foot Health, Ryan Golub, DPM, and Zachary Flynn, DPM, AACFAS, help Phoenix-area patients put a stop to developing bunions using both nonsurgical and surgical techniques. To learn more, call the office or request an appointment using the online scheduling tool.
Medically known as hallux valgus, a bunion is a progressive condition where your big toe starts to turn inward toward your second toe. At the same time as this happens, a bony protrusion forms on the inside of your toe at the base. As a bunion progresses, it can force your big toe under or over your second toe, creating problems in this toe, as well.
While bunions aren’t dangerous, they can be problematic, starting with the increasing difficulty of wearing shoes that weren’t designed to accommodate the newly-forming bump. More often than not, this leads to pain and swelling in your bunion, only exacerbating the problem and making even roomy shoes painful.
When a bunion forces your big toe over or under your second toe, it can also lead to problems in that toe in the form of corns and calluses.
Bunions appear to be affected by genetics, meaning that you’ve inherited the propensity for the condition. The development and progression of bunions, however, can be accelerated by wearing shoes that crowd your toes or having inflammatory conditions, such as arthritis.
Since bunions are progressive, the earlier Dr. Golub intervenes, the better. Through changes in your footwear, orthotic devices, and anti-inflammatory medications, you can slow down the progression of the bunion in its early stages.
If your bunion has progressed to the point it’s interfering with your second toe, or the bony protrusion has become large enough that wearing certain shoes is more difficult, Dr. Golub may recommend a surgery called a bunionectomy.
Dr. Golub performs a bunionectomy on an outpatient basis, which means you’re free to return home on the same day. During the procedure, he shaves down the bone that’s forming the bump on the inside of your toe, rebalances the soft tissue in your foot, and repositions your metatarsal, keeping it in place with screws and plates.
Depending upon the extent of the surgery, some patients are able to walk afterward with the aid of a surgical shoe.
If your bunions are causing you pain and limiting your footwear, call Arizona Foot Health, or request a consultation using the online form.