Bunions Symptoms and Treatment

A bunion is a type of structural deformity which is most generally associated with the joint between the big toe and the rest of the foot (metatarsal joint). This deformity is usually formed by some enlarge tissue or a bone mass. The mass tends to force the big toe to turn in toward the space occupied by the other toes.

It is often recognized by redness and swelling or just general discomfort of the joint. It is a malady which is most often passed on through genetics or from an arthritic deterioration of the metatarsal joint (see pictures below). A person may also develop this issue as their foot becomes more flat footed which tends to put more strain on the big toe in general. It is often thought that ill fitting shoes may cause bunions but in reality it may actually just speed up the process.

There are many different ways to treat a bunion but you must remember that they are just that, a treatment, not a cure. There are bunion pads to provide cushioning for the joint; orthodics try to take the pressure off of the joint; toe spacers to try to straighten the joint along with a host of other remedies. Along with these treatments, regular icing of the joint also helps.

The only true corrective procedure would be surgery by a trained podiatrist. However, surgery is not always 100% effective. Typically this is only done in cases of severe deformity or discomfort. To surgically repair the joint, the doctor will either remove the bony mass or structurally realign the toe with the metatarsal joint. Recovery is normally 6-8 weeks accompanied with crutches and potentially a walking boot.

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