This past week we had many patients that came in seeking bunion surgery. However, this is not the best way to initially treat a bunion. Bunions progressively get worse over time and the sooner you treat it, the better the outcome will be. If your parents or grandparents have bunions, chances are you will have them too! We inherit our foot type from our family, and our foot type can cause strain in tendons and ligaments from daily walking. This constant straining can result in a painful bunion formation. Therefore, it is imperative to have it checked out at the earliest signs, or even before they start occurring if your family members have them!
Bunions form as the result of the bones, tendons, and ligaments shifting over time. If you feel like your bunion occurred over night, or within a week, chances are that it has been there for a while and you just never noticed it. Most patients do not pay close attention to their feet unless they have pain or an injury. Therefore, it is important to check your feet regularly.
Treatment for bunions can vary widely depending on the degree of severity. Initially, modifying shoe gear proves most effective. Increasing your shoes width, and not size, will prevent a lot of irritation and rubbing to the area. Wearing supportive shoes and inserts, known as orthotics, will hold your entire foot in better alignment and prevent a lot of strain to the tendons and ligaments in your foot. The orthotics will help prevent the progression of the bunion as rapidly as it naturally occurs. Padding the area of irritation also proves successful. Many times, if the area is inflamed, there may be fluid from the inflammation, and steroid injections or oral medications can help decrease the inflammation and soft tissue swelling.
If the pain becomes constant and inhibits your daily activities, even after trying all of the above mentioned treatments, surgical options should be explored. Typically with surgery, the patient remains in a stiff boot for approximately 4 weeks. You will then gradually transition into a sneaker and then into normal shoes/high heels. Recovery time includes resting, elevating, icing the foot, and mild physical therapy once healed.
If you notice any abnormalities to your foot, please come in and have it checked out as soon as possible. The sooner we get you a proper treatment plan, the better the outcome will be in the future. Call us at 813-875-0555 to make an appointment!