Bunions are a common foot condition that brings challenges and discomfort to a patient’s daily life. In today’s post, Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists in Bellevue, WA, explains what bunions are and how they can be treated.
A bunion is swollen tissue or bony growth typically located at the base joint of the big toe. The swelling happens due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which affects the other toes. This makes the area around the base of the big toe become painful and inflamed.
Bunions often develop from a combination of factors, including ill-fitting footwear, structural abnormalities in the foot, and genetics. They can cause swelling and pain and make it difficult to find comfortable shoes. They typically form because of stress on the feet and genetics. Uncomfortable and poorly fitting footwear that places stress on feet, like high heels, can worsen existing bunions.
Signs of a Bunion
A bunion looks similar to a turnip in that they are swollen and red. Some say the word ‘bunion’ is derived from the Greek word for turnip.
Other symptoms include:
- Trouble wearing regular shoes.
- Not being able to bend the big toe, or burning and pain when you try to bend it.
- Numbness in the big toe.
- Corns or calluses.
For diagnosis, two tests –x-rays and blood tests – are taken, especially in the early stages of development. X-rays deliver a clear look at your bone structure, while the blood tests will help determine if the pain is caused by something different, like arthritis.
Treatment options for bunions include:
- Wearing wider shoes that can reduce pain and provide more comfort.
- Not wearing heels or other shoes that cause discomfort.
- Foot inserts or orthotics.
- Pain management and anti-inflammatory drugs.
If you think you may be suffering from bunions, contact Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists in Bellevue, WA. You can schedule an appointment online or by calling us at 425-455-0936. We can diagnose your condition and present you with treatment options before proceeding.