Much has been written in the media recently of the bunions of a certain well known female celebrity. It appears that they might not be giving her a great deal of a problem but she has decided to have them treated in America next year so that she can wear nice shoes again. Women have more trouble with bunions that men because many of the problems have been brought about by tight ill-fitting footwear.
Bunions are an enlargement of the Metatarso-phalangeal joint, the joint at the base of your big toe or technically speaking Hallux Valgus. This joint deformity often runs in families as do other foot deformities that can lead to the formation of a bunion. The increase in pressures on the big toe joint cause it to become unstable causing the deformity that shows as the first toe deviating away towards the second. Folk with a low or flat arch can also become more susceptible to the condition as do certain occupations such as ballet dancers. Tight footwear over a period of years can also cause its formation and those with arthritic conditions are prone to this uncomfortable problem. What can be done to help? There is no doubt that a bunion can cause problems with footwear purchase, so it’s important to choose shoes with a wide and deep toe-box. It’s also possible to find footwear with soft expandable uppers that accommodate the problem. Gel toe spacers can also improve quite simply the discomfort between the 1st and second toe.
Many opt for the surgical treatment as a permanent answer. Arthroplasty or osteotomy, which is best ? The choice is discussed with your surgeon as our famous celebrity will do, all will take in to consideration joint function, pain in joint before operation, if arthritis is present and age of the patient. Operation or conservative treatment–the choice is yours.