Risks and Complications of Bunions

Bunions can lead to several complications and increase your risk for developing more serious health issues, even beyond the foot itself.

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Corns, Calluses & Blisters

The bunion can also cause the toe to rub against the toe next to it, leading to blisters or calluses where the two toes come in contact with each other (especially if the toes are overlapping). Sores may also form on the point of the bunion protrusion as it is more likely to rub against shoes and become irritated. Similar to calluses, corns are dead skin cells that become hardened like stones over time, leading to pain. Though corns and blisters are relatively minor and easily treatable issues, they will continue to persist without bunion correction treatment.

Bursitis

Bursitis is a painful condition that occurs when the small pads around the foot bones, called bursae, become inflamed. These fluid-filled sacs help protect bones and joints, and when they become swollen, it can also damage the cartilage around the joint. This can then potentially lead to arthritis because it indicates that the joints are under constant pressure.

Metatarsalgia

As bunions become swollen, it can affect the soles of your feet and lead to a condition known as Metatarsalgia. Metatarsalgia is a condition that causes pain and inflammation in the ball of the foot, and it is more common in individuals who frequently run and/or jump. This condition is sometimes caused by a change in the way a person moves and/or supports their weight with different parts of the foot, typically because of the bunion pain itself.

Hammertoes & Mallet Toes

Hammertoe, also referred to as mallet toe, is when any toe becomes bent abnormally at the middle joint, causing the muscles and tendons to become pushed out of position. This can occur when any of the smaller digits bend downward, clawing the ground when a person walks. This occurs due to instability in the foot related to foot misalignment. Hammertoes can form in the toe next to the big toe bunion, but it can also form in any of the smaller toes as bunions might change the way a person walks in response to the pain they are experiencing.

We see bunions in juvenilles commonly at alternative foot solutions and would encourage that if your child appears to be getting a bunion or has a family history of bunions get it assessed ASAP. This will improve the likelyhood of sucessful conservative management.

Osteoarthritis

People with more severe bunion cases are at a higher risk to develop osteoarthritis, which is degenerative disease results from the breakdown of joint cartilage and underlying bone. When bunions are present, the arthritis is onset by the wear and tear of the affected joints due to poor movement through the joint. Typical osteoarthritis symptoms include joint stiffness, pain, decreased range of motion and swelling.

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Adolescent Bunions

Adolescent bunions are most common in girls between 10 and 15 years old, but boys can also get them. The strongest factor in someone getting a bunion is genetic tendency that is inherited. These inherited traits are stronger on the female side but not always. These traits are the misalignment in the foot that causes compensation that then leads to a bunion.

We see bunions in juvenilles commonly at alternative foot solutions and would encourage that if your child appears to be getting a bunion or has a family history of bunions get it assessed ASAP. This will improve the likelyhood of sucessful conservative management.

New Patient Bunion Assessment

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