Bunions (also known as Hallux Valgus) are a common foot deformity that is often referred to as a bump on the side of the big toe. Bunions are usually visible at the base of the big toe or at the side of the foot. This condition involves shifting of the bony framework within the front part of the foot. As this is a progressive disorder, the symptoms only get worse with time if not treated.
Causes, Risk Factors and Symptoms
Bunions can be an inherited faulty mechanical structure of the foot which affects certain foot types (e.g. flat foot / low-arched feet). Low-arched / flat foot adds additional pressure on the ball of the foot and toe joints, with time leading to instability in the big toe. Risk factors such as high heels, ill-fitting footwear, arthritis may also cause bunions to develop.
Symptoms of bunions include:
- Pain or soreness at the base of the big toe or inside the foot
- Burning sensation
- Bulging bump on the outside of the big toe joint
Bunions may be treated with or without surgery, depending on the extent of the condition. Some may opt for surgery due to aesthetic reasons while some undergo surgery as a result of persistent or intermittent pain. Nonsurgical treatment options include the change of wider toe-box footwear, padding to cushion pain area and orthotics to slow down progression of the deformity.
Modern bunion surgery approach: “Walk Immediately” and “No Crutches”.
This is made possible by Scarf Osteotomy; a surgical technique which corrects severe bunions without sacrificing the important joint of the big toe.