The bunion toe deformity is a hard, bony growth that often affects the joint of the big toe causing the toe to bend and push into the other toes, which can cause those toes to overlap. A similar condition occurs with the pinky toe and is called a bunionette. Both conditions are the result of tendon and structural imbalances that cause the toes to bend. Tight-fitting footwear often exacerbates the issues.
Signs and symptoms of bunions may include the following:
- Protruding bony bump—a bony bump starting to form on the side or top of the big toe joint is one of the first signs of a bunion.
- Abnormal toe bending—Your big toe will gradually, over many months, bend towards your other toes. It can cause overlapping toe problems, blisters, and other skin conditions.
- Skin problems—The skin on and around the bunion will become red and inflamed, and painful, oozing corns can develop on top of a bunion and adjoining toes. Blisters can also become problematic.
- Development of corns—Corns may develop on the top of a bunion and respond to the friction caused by over and underlapping toes.
Some of the treatments for bunions include the following:
- Wear properly sized and fitted shoes with orthotic inserts— Wear shoes with a wide toe box to allow room for the bunion without rubbing on the inside of your shoes. Utilize custom orthotic inserts, toe splints, or braces to redistribute pressure and stress away from the bunion.
- Physical therapy—Strength and flexibility exercises for the toes and feet will help keep the bunion from migrating further into the other toes.
- Surgery—Reduction of the bunion and toe realignment may be necessary in severe cases.
If you are developing a bunion and would like to avoid complications, see your foot doctor for the proper care. At Your Next Step, our team of board-certified podiatrists has access to advanced technologies, along with years of experience, to help diagnose and treat a variety of foot and ankle problems, including sports injuries, joint pain, toe deformities, nail fungus, chronic tendon pain, and skin problems. Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, and Dr. Aliza V. Eisen provide high-quality foot and ankle care to patients in the greater Philadelphia area at our offices conveniently located in Ardmore, Paoli, and Downingtown, PA. Please contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment.