Tri-County Foot Care

Podiatrists & Foot & Ankle Surgeons located in Brighton, MI; Livonia, MI; Sterling Heights, MI; Troy, MI; Taylor, MI; and Trenton, MI

Bunions can make walking or simply wearing shoes painful and difficult. If you notice a bony bump at the base of your big toe, don’t ignore it. The best way to prevent a bunion from turning into a serious problem is to treat it early on, so schedule an appointment with board-certified podiatrists Lee K. Gold, DPM, and Ignazio D. Perna, DPM. They have six convenient office locations throughout the Detroit metropolitan area: in Brighton, Livonia, Sterling Heights, Trenton, Taylor, and Troy, Michigan. The doctors can help you adapt to bunions or get rid of them, including with custom-made orthotics. Schedule an appointment online or over the phone.

Bunion Q & A

What are bunions?

A bunion is a painful, bony bump at the base of your big toe. The area around a bunion may be red, swollen, and sore.

Bunions grow slowly. If your big toe points inward instead of straight ahead, pressing against your second toe, the alignment of the bones in your foot may start to change. In response, your big toe joint sticks out, causing a bony bump to form.

Bunions are more than just a cosmetic issue, so you should schedule an appointment with Dr. Gold or Dr. Perna if you notice one starting to form. If it’s left untreated, the deformity gets worse, and it can significantly change the structure of your foot. Advanced bunions are very painful and interfere with walking and wearing shoes.

What causes bunions?

Your shoes usually play at least some role in bunions. If your shoes don’t leave enough room for your toes, you’re at risk of developing bunions.

Bunions affect women more than men, in part because of popular women’s fashions in shoe styles, such as the narrow, pointy toes of stilettos and high heels. However, anyone can develop bunions, and any shoes that are too tight can be the culprit.

Bunions also form in part because of foot structure. If you have flat feet, or your big toe naturally points inward rather than straight ahead, you’re more likely to develop bunions.

How are bunions treated?

As soon as you notice a bunion, you should seek treatment. You shouldn’t wait until it’s causing you pain. The earlier you treat a bunion, the better because that’s when conservative treatment is most effective.

Just as inappropriate footwear is a cause of bunions, appropriate footwear is a central part of treatment. Dr. Gold or Dr. Perna can fit you for custom-made orthotics, or shoe inserts, that improve the alignment of your toes, support your feet, and relieve pressure. It’s important to wear orthotics in comfortable, properly-fitting shoes that leave plenty of room for your toes.

If you have swelling and inflammation, the doctors may recommend icing the area and taking over-the-counter pain medication. These symptoms usually improve once you start wearing appropriate footwear.

Your bunion may require surgery if:

  • Your pain doesn’t improve with conservative treatment
  • You have trouble walking and performing everyday activities
  • Your big toe has become deformed

Surgery corrects the alignment of your toes and helps relieve your pain.

Schedule an appointment with Dr. Gold or Dr. Perna today, either online or over the phone.