Should I Fix My Bunion?

Should I fix my bunion?

A bunion is an enlargement of the bone and the joint of the big toe.  Many people have bunions, but not all bunions lead to pain or activity limitations. In some instances, as the bunion progresses, the big toe may also start to turn and begin to push on the second toe causing a hammertoe.  Bunions often run in families and if you have noticed your mother or grandmother complaining about their bunion pain, you are more likely to develop one over time.  Shoe wear can also play a significant role in the development of a bunion deformity. Bunions can worsen over time and become painful if your shoes are not an adequate width for your foot. High-heeled shoes also influence the development of a bunion by increasing pressure on the forefoot.

Pain and discomfort does not necessarily mean you need surgery. Many bunions do not become painful or change over time. With appropriate shoes, bunions can remain stable and may not limit your activity level. Often times, early pain due to a bunion can be treated with simple solutions. Early treatment considerations may consist of rest, ice, changing shoe gear, orthotics to better align the foot, and bunion pads.

If you are having pain that limits your ability to wear most shoes and limits your activities, you may consider surgical correction of your bunion. Questions to consider when contemplating surgery are; has your foot pain lead to slowly decreasing the distance you want to walk, the amount of running you do, or the activities you participate in.  When this happens, then the bunion is negatively affecting your life both physically and socially. If this describes your bunion pain, it may be time to discuss surgical treatments.

Surgical treatment for bunions usually involves cutting the bone in order to realign the great toe. Bunions range from mild to severe, and in some cases lead to end-stage arthritis of the big toe joint. There are over 100 procedures described to address a bunion surgically. The surgical treatment depends on the specific deformity causing the bunion and may vary from person to person. If hammertoe deformities of the lesser toes develop, these are often corrected at the same time. If you are experiencing pain related to a bunion contact our offices for an evaluation and treatment plan to help keep you active and pain free.

Author
Dr. Scott Carrington Scott Carrington, DPM, is a fellowship-trained foot and ankle surgeon restoring mobility in patients throughout the community of Castle Rock, Colorado, at Castle Rock Foot & Ankle Care. A highly skilled clinician, Dr.Carrington specializes in trauma, foot and ankle reconstruction, sports medicine, arthroscopy, cartilage restorations, and total ankle replacements. A native of Colorado, he attended Cherry Creek high school and went on to complete his undergraduate studies at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. He received his medical degree from Des Moines University College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines, Iowa. As part of his education, Dr. Carrington completed a competitive scientific research fellowship in which he performed more than 300 hours of research. Dr. Carrington returned to Denver for residency training at the highly competitive Highlands Presbyterian/St. Lukes hospital program for Podiatric Medicine and Surgery. He then went on to complete a rigorous fellowship for foot and

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