Bunion Deformity Correction: What you ought to know

Bunions & Bunionettes are a common cause of painful toes. A bunion is a misalignment of the bones in the foot, occurring when something causes the big toe to turn inward or in case of bunionettes this is a bone growth on the outside of your foot near your pinky, or 5th, toe.

While these can result from heredity, arthritis, or misalignment of the foot; a common cause is wearing shoes that squeeze the toes into pointy or narrow toe boxes, forcing the toes to fold over one another to fit in.

So if you are experiencing this condition what are the options available to overcome this deformity, read on…

Common Symptoms

Medically it is known as hallux valgus deformity. The symptoms for Bunion conditions are quite visible and clear, common ones include –

  • a bony protrusion at base of big toe (for bunion) or fifth toe (for bunionette)
  • pain, especially when wearing shoes that press against the bump

While you may not even notice a bump or growth there to start with, over time as the bunion/bunionette continues to grow, it can become quite painful. It’s also called a Tailor’s bunion in some circles.

 

Preventing Bunions

Yes prevention is better than cure. And in cases when its not hereditary…simply wearing shoes that provide sufficient room in the toe boxes is the best strategy for preventing bunions and bunionettes from developing. Look for shoes with blunt toes rather than pointy ones, and allow for about a quarter-inch to a half-inch of space between your longest toe and the front of the shoe. Selecting a functional shoes that are good to your feet over ones that are just aesthetically pleasing would be a wise choice.

 

Treatment for Bunions & Bunionettes

While some people can do well with the deformity by getting shoes that are roomier on their feet. For others treatment some of the treatment options would be –

Image Source: John Hopkins Medicine

Custom Inserts

Padding the affected area to protect it from rubbing on the shoes, and even custom inserts (Bunion Correctors) to help protect the area can be tried.

Another helpful aid is a shoe stretcher. A plastic fixture or plug that can be placed in the shoe to stretch the narrow area, which relieves pressure on the foot at that point. A shoe inserts (orthosis) can redistribute your weight so the bunion doesn’t constantly rub against your shoe.

While this may help some, it doesn’t always work and the next step would be a surgical procedure.

Orthopaedic Correction Surgery

surgery option for bunion
Image Source: Harvard Medical School

First, those who may benefit from surgery are the patients who have not gained any relief from the other methods already tried. Surgery is not the first line of defense for this ailment but it can relieve pain in those who do not receive relief in any other form.

This is an outpatient procedure so unless there are other complications to deal with, you’re going to be in and out in the same day. The surgeon you work with will go into detail on their plans, but generally the bunionette surgery entails the tissue on your outside of the foot and sometimes an incision is made into the bone itself. There are several different methods to help rid the foot of the bony growth and straighten out the curve that may have developed. Once your surgeon has looked over you records, they will go over the best options.

People who have a cut on their foot, lost circulation in the foot area, or that have an infection in the foot will not be good candidates for the procedure. Your doctor will advise the best route of dealing with the deformity correction to help relieve your pain and get you walking again.

If you have the surgery you can expect recovery to vary depending on your specific case. Most people are in a boot or splint to help the foot stay in place for anywhere from three weeks up to twelve. Be sure to follow all of your doctor’s orders afterwards so that you can make sure it heals properly and you can get back to business as usual.

Bunion Correction in Singapore

For Orthopaedic help and surgeries reach out to Singapore Sports & Orthopaedic Clinic at the Gleneagles Medical Center. Our team of orthopaedic specialists and doctors will advise you on the best possible way to treat Bunion Deformity Conditions. Call us or fill in the appointment form and we’ll get in touch with you.