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A bunion is a deformity characterized by a bump on the outside of the joint at the bottom of your big toe. It can cause pain and swelling in the big toe. A bunion forms when bone or tissue around the joint becomes swollen from too much pressure.  You also can have a bunionette, or tailor's bunion, which forms on the joint of the little toe (5th toe) . It is common for the big toe to shift towards your other toes and this is called displacement. It can lead to problems with the other toes and causing subluxation (overlapping) of your 1st and 2nd toes.

There are several reasons why you can get bunions:

  • You can get a bunion from having an unusual walking style

  • Flatfeet

  • wearing tight-fitting shoes

  • high heels


You can treat most bunions at home with a few simple steps such as wider shoes and NSAIDs. If you have a lot of pain, you may need an injection of medicine into the bunion to reduce the swelling. If you still continue to have pain, you may need to have surgery.


A bunionectomy is surgery to remove the lump/bump of the big toe joint (medial eminence). This lump is called a bunion. The bunion forms on the joint where your big toe joins your foot. Bunion surgery will also straighten your big toe. Bunion surgery usually involve 1 or 2 incisions over the joint depending how severe the deformity is. The doctor will remove small pieces of bone and may need to perform a complete osteotomy with hardware to straighten your toe. Your toe may be held in place with pins, screws, wires, or staples. The surgery will leave scars that fade with time.


The surgery may make walking easier. It may reduce stiffness, pain, or swelling in your toe joint. It may also improve the way your toe looks.


Bunion surgery is not for everyone.  Feel free to make an appointment with us to discuss whether or not bunion surgery is for you.

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