Ask the Sydney Physio: Bunions

In our latest series of articles, we invite you to Ask the CBD Physio! Our Physiotherapists will be writing for you! So get in touch via Facebook and let us know, what would you like to ask the Sydney Physio?

Sydney CBD Physio, Tom Wyer answers our client’s query on Bunions.

What is a Bunion and why do they occur?

APhysio Sydney Bunion bunion is commonly considered to be an increased  formation of bone deposit at the base of the big toe, however this is a common misconception.

The bunion occurs from the movement of the the first metatarsal (which is a bone located in the midfoot) towards the midline.  The increased tracking of this bone creates the appearance of the bunion. The big toe is then forced outwards, towards the little toe and can even track under the middle toes in extreme cases.

The bunion is usually quite unsightly due to the prominent bone on the inside of the foot and will usually occur on both sides.

The reason a bunion occurs differs between medical specialists however the main offenders are considered to be wearing tight fitting shoes regularly, namely high heels and the other recognised reason is genetic predisposition.

How is a Bunion treated?

Sydney Physio Bunion
The reason a person would undergo surgery for this condition, depends entirely upon that persons function. Due to the abnormal position of the big toe joint, the functional deficits acquired will be a lack of range of the joint into flexion and extension. This can also result in pain with walking and weight bearing activities. The symptoms can vary from patient to patient regardless of the deformation of the big toe joint.
It is always best to try and improve function levels first using conservative methods. This usually consists of the use of orthotics which is a semi-rigid mould which is placed in the shoe to improve the mechanics of the big toe joint. This