What Is A Bunion?
A bunion, technically called a hallux valgus, is a hard bony round protrusion that extends from the side of the base of the big toe. It can also occur with the little toe when it is known as a bunionette.
It’s a fairly common foot complaint that worsens over time and can cause pain and discomfort, difficulty wearing certain types of shoes, and contribute to other foot disorders. Bunions are caused by a misalignment of the joints of the bones that make up the big toe. If caught in the early stages of development, bunions can be treated with non-invasive measures, but in the more severe stages surgery is the only option.
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What Causes Bunions?
Bunions can develop from a variety of causes and often from several factors working in concert to bring about the abnormal condition. It’s often almost impossible to determine a single cause of a bunion, but some of the main contributing factors are:
If a bunion is diagnosed early in its development before it begins to cause serious problems for a patient it can usually be treated with non-invasive measures to slowly correct the misalignment of the bone joint such as shoe inserts. If left untreated to the point that a bunion causes the patient regular pain and discomfort and limits normal activity then surgery, called a bunionectomy, is the recommended treatment. It’s the only way to permanently remove the bunion. Fortunately, modern techniques make this type of surgery relatively painless with a fast recovery. Again, early diagnosis and treatment of a bunion are important.