Have you noticed that bony bump on the side of your big toe is growing in size? This bump is known as a bunion and it can lead to persistent toe pain and other foot complications. At Comprehensive Foot Care Associates with offices in Abington and Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, Dr. Ronald J. Small offers effective treatments, including surgery, to alleviate chronic bunion pain and make it possible to wear shoes comfortably. To learn more about treatment options for bunions, schedule an appointment online or by phone.
A bunion is a bony bump that forms on the base of your big toe. Bunions develop gradually when your big toe pushes against the neighboring toe, causing your big toe joint to increase in size and stick out.
Typically, bunions develop slowly and are the result of wearing tight shoes or a medical condition, such as arthritis.
You can also develop bunions due to a defect in the structure of your foot.
Common symptoms of a bunion include redness and tenderness in the skin over the bump. You may also experience limited big toe movement and swelling of your big toe joint.
Pain of a bunion may come and go or be persistent. Wearing shoes or being physically active can aggravate joint pain.
When pain of a bunion interferes with your ability to walk, you should schedule a consultation with Dr. Small. If left untreated, bunions can cause additional medical conditions, including:
Bursitis: a painful condition that happens when the cushioning bursae sacs become inflamed
Hammertoe: an abnormal bend in the middle joint of a toe that causes pain and pressure on your other toes
Metatarsalgia: a condition that causes pain and swelling in the ball of your foot
Dr. Small may try nonsurgical treatments first, including over-the-counter bunion pads and pain relievers, before recommending surgery.
If these treatments aren’t effective, the only way to treat a persistently painful bunion is for Dr. Small to surgically remove it. He can remove swollen tissue from around your joint and realign the bones of your big toe and foot to alleviate pain. Following surgery, you may be able to walk more comfortably but it can take two to four weeks to fully recover.
You should also choose comfortable, well-fitting footwear that provides enough room for your toes. Avoid wearing high-heeled shoes that often crowd your toes and may be too narrow for your toes to sit in the right position.
For a thorough evaluation of a bunion, schedule a consultation with Comprehensive Foot Care Associates online or by phone.