Bunions are a common foot problem that are probably most recognizable by their most distinctive feature: a bulging joint at the base of the big toe. Depending on the size and severity of the bunion, the big toe usually slants at an angle away from the joint in the direction of the other toes. Bunions are caused by a deformity of the metatarsophalangeal joint, and range from mild to severe depending on the extent of damage to the joint. Dr. Mathew John, a podiatrist in Marietta, GA, offers treatment for bunions and other foot and ankle problems.
Bunion Diagnosis and Treatment in Marietta, GA
Anyone can develop bunions, but there are a few things that make them more likely in some people. For example, they tend to be more common in women than in men, and also tend to run in families, so if a close relative like a parent or sibling has or has had a bunion in the past, chances are that you may develop one as well. The shape of your feet can also predispose you to developing bunions (having flat feet or low arches), as well as lifestyle factors like wearing tight shoes that crowd the toes or being significantly overweight or obese.
Signs and Symptoms of Bunions
The most common symptom is a bump at the base of the toe. Bunions do not always cause symptoms, but pain, redness, and corns and calluses from friction between the skin and shoes are common with bunions. If bunions are large enough, you may not be able to fit into certain shoes and experience pain and stiffness in the joint when you walk or put pressure on it.
What You Can Do About Bunions
In many cases, bunions can be treated conservatively with supportive devices like splints, orthotics, padding, supportive footwear, and physical therapy to relieve joint stiffness. In rare cases where conservative treatments don't work, your podiatrist may recommend surgery to correct a bunion.
Find a Podiatrist in Marietta, GA
For more information about bunion prevention and treatment, contact Ankle & Foot Centers, PC by calling (770) 977-3668 to schedule an appointment with Dr. John today.