That bony bump on your big toe, known as a bunion, can be bothersome for many people. Others seem to nonchalantly go through life without needing significant bunion treatment. So, how do you know when to worry about your bunion to help it get better before it gets worse?
Understanding how your bunion forms
It’s important to know how you get bunions in the first place. Bunions are hereditary and very common in both men and women, although they are more prevalent in women, especially if they consistently wear high heels.
A bunion is a result of a misalignment of the two bones that form the big toe joint. As the bones in the back of your foot (called the subtalar joint) dislocate forward and to the side, it causes an enlargement as the joint moves out of place over time, creating a large bump on your big toe.
Many people find it easy to live with bunions. Others find it necessary to use different bunion treatments to manage the pain. It depends on the stage of your bunion.
Stages of a Bunion
Stage 1 – Bump on the big toe joint
As described above, you can see the formation of a bump on the inside of your big toe joint.
Action step: nothing usually needs to be done at this beginning stage.
Stage 2 – Big toe begins to move toward the second toe
You can clearly see evidence of the big toe angled toward the second toe and the bump may be getting larger.
Action step: mild changes you can try to not aggravate the bunion, such as changing footwear to shoes with a wide toe box or applying an ice pack to reduce inflammation if the bunion is agitated.
Stage 3 – Big toe comes into contact with the second toe
As the big toe moves closer and closer to the second toe, it causes the bunion to get bigger and the foot to possibly become unstable.
Action step: many patients try pain management techniques, such as over-the-counter pain relievers, protective padding, or orthotics.
Stage 4 – Big toe drifts underneath the second toe, causing the second toe to overlap
Stages 3 and 4 can be very painful. When it becomes difficult for you to bear weight, it’s time to correct the bunion.
Action step: most podiatrists recommend bunion surgery at this point
Effective Bunion Treatment: HyProCure®
If you’ve reached the point where your bunion is causing you significant pain, then consider a treatment called HyProCure®. It corrects the root problem causing your bunion – a faulty foot structure caused by foot misalignment.
As the bones in the back of the foot – the subtalar joint just below the ankle joint – dislocate forward and to the side, additional pressure is added to the outside of the big toe, increasing the bone growth that leads to the formation of the bunion. Once the subtalar joint is put back into alignment, most bunions get better.
This is what HyProCure® accomplishes. It’s unlike traditional bunion surgery that causes excessive trauma to the foot. Instead, HyProCure® uses a minimally invasive procedure – meaning it’s done by making a small incision – that places a titanium stent into the naturally occurring space between the ankle bone and foot bone. The procedure corrects foot misalignment by stabilizing the ankle, correcting the excessive inward rotation of the ankle, and decreasing the pressure put on the bunion.
HyProCure® implantation will reduce or completely alleviate 35 to 40% of small to moderate size bunions. Adler Footcare specializes in minimally invasive correction of the remaining bunion deformities. Adler Footcare's bunion procedure treats the bunion with no stitches, no internal bone screws or pins, no scarring, no hospitalization and minimal disruption of your life during the recovery period.
Are you worried about your bunion getting worse? Is it already causing you significant pain? Find out if you’re a candidate for HyProCure® by contacting a New York podiatrist at Adler Footcare.
Adler Footcare is classified as a Center of Excellence for HyProCure® implantation, by the Graham International Implant Institute, because of the safety, expertise and experience offered to patients. We believe feet shouldn’t hurt and neither should their treatment.