South Sound Foot & Ankle
Podiatric Medicine and Surgery & Diabetic Wound Care Specialist located in Olympia, WA
Don’t let bunions cause you pain or make walking difficult when highly qualified podiatrist Mark Hopkins, DPM, has solutions. At South Sound Foot & Ankle in Olympia, Washington, Dr. Hopkins has many years of experience providing a range of effective treatments from bunion bandages and night splints to lifestyle changes and corrective surgery when needed. Dr. Hopkins utilizes only the latest and most advanced tools, technology, and techniques for the best possible treatment outcome. Call South Sound Foot & Ankle or book online to take care of your bunions.
What are bunions?
A bunion is a bony bump or growth that forms on the bottom of your big toe joint. Over time, your big toe joint can become enlarged and stick out as your big toe presses against your next toe. The skin of the bunion might be sore and red, and your foot might appear unusually shaped in the area of the bunion.
A Tailor’s bunion, or bunionette, occurs when your smallest toe (the fifth metatarsal bone) begins to expand outward and develops a bony growth.
If bunions aren’t treated properly, they can cause mild-to-severe pain and difficulties with walking and movement. Calluses can develop around your bunion in some cases.
Bunions are more prevalent in women than men and they typically worsen over time.
What causes bunions?
The cause of bunions isn’t exactly clear, but the bony bumps have been associated with medical conditions like foot injuries, arthritis, and congenital deformities. Some bunions can show up due to prolonged bursitis (inflammation of fluid-filled sacs).
When your body weight falls unevenly on certain tendons and joints in your feet, you can also develop bunions.
Improperly fitting shoes and high-heeled shoes might also play a role in the development or exacerbation of bunions.
What is the treatment for bunions?
Unless they’re surgically corrected, bunions are permanent. At South Sound Foot & Ankle, the earlier stages of treatment are typically focused on limiting the progression of the bunion, diminishing any pressure or pain, and restoring foot function.
Dr. Hopkins might suggest:
- Assistive products, such as bandages, night splints, and bunion shields
- Corrective surgery
- Medications to decrease pain and swelling
- Custom orthotics
Custom orthotics like custom shoe inserts can be particularly beneficial for bunions.
If other conservative treatments aren’t successful in reducing your discomfort, Dr. Hopkins might suggest a bunion surgery, usually a bunionectomy.
If your bunion causes you consistent big toe or foot pain, negatively impacts your walking, makes it difficult to find properly fitting shoes, or if your bony bump becomes a cosmetic concern, you should visit Dr. Hopkins for an evaluation and treatment.
How can I prevent bunions?
Dr. Hopkins takes time to educate you on how to prevent bunions and how to choose comfortable and properly fitting shoes. It’s best to select shoes with softer soles and wider insteps and avoid shoes that are sharply pointed, too narrow, or tight-fitting.
Dr. Hopkins has extensive experience in surgical and conservative care and advanced minimally invasive surgery techniques. If you have questions about bunions or you’re interested in treatment, call South Sound Foot & Ankle or schedule online today.