What is a Bone Spur on the toe?
A bone spur on the toe or exostosis is an enlargement of the bone that can occur on the bones of the toes or next to the joint. When you get these enlarged areas of bone they will often cause pain between the toes, next to the toenail or under the toenail. When bone spurs are under the toenail they are called a subungual exostosis.
These enlargement may also occur at the tip of the toe and this is from the toe being pulled downward. This causes the tip of the toe to rub on the bottom of the shoes and cause pain. These areas often develop hard skin or corns causes by the abnormal pressure. Bone spur surgery of the toes is a way to end your pain and get rid of the spur.
When you wear shoes the bone spur on your toe will press against the other toe and cause pain. The pain may be minor at first and controlled wit pads or wider shoes. However, this eventually becomes too painful and a solution to remove the toe bone spur is sought out. There are many nerve endings in the toes and these bone spurs can be very sensitive even in sensible shoes or just wearing socks. These enlarged bone spur areas can become so irritated that the skin will break and an infection will worsen the condition. This may lead you to your podiatrist much more quickly. You can then discuss bone spur surgery for your toes.
How can I Get Rid of a bone spur on the toe?
The good news is that bone spurs can be removed in the comfort of the podiatrist’s office. The area can easily be numbed so that you do not feel any pain during the procedure. A tiny opening is made through the skin next to the spur and the bone spur can be smoothed and is no longer present. This is done with a specialized power burr that is very efficient. This simple procedure can be done for bone spurs in all locations of the toe.
In the case where there is pain on the tip of the toe, another simple procedure may be performed without having to remove bone at all. A tiny opening is made in the skin on the bottom of the toe and the tendon is released. This allows the tip of the toe to come back up into its normal position. Releasing this tendon causes no problems with walking or any permanent problems.
Neither of these procedures even require a stitch because the opening is so small. A small bandage is applied and kept on for 3-7 days. Your podiatrist will give you full instructions after your procedure to remove the bone spur from your toe. Some people are able to leave in a roomy shoe. The area is kept dry to avoid possible infections. Always mention if you have plans to go on vacation or to the beach. Even though this procedure is more simple, you still want to do it at a convenient time to allow time to rest and heal. This will get you back to activities quicker.
Complications are low because of the minimally-invasive nature of these procedures. However, there are still possibilities of infection, toe swelling, numbness, slow healing and even regrowth of the bone spur. Always discuss risks and complications with your podiatrist before the procedure so that you are well informed.
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