Bunions (Hallux Abducto Valgus)
Bunions are basically a deformity of a toe joint caused by pressure to that joint. They typically develop in the joint of the big toe, where pressure from narrow shoes forces the big toe over against the next toe, causing the joint to stick out. Over time, the joint becomes bigger and develops a bony bump on top. The bump may become red, swollen or sore.
Smaller bunions can form on the little toe joint due to narrow, tight footwear. Women and athletes can be more susceptible because of the design of athletic footwear, skates or dance footwear, and women’s dress shoes.
Bunions also can develop because of a structural defect in the toe joint, often an inherited condition. Those suffering from arthritis also may experience bunions because of the joint damage inherent to the disease.
Frequently bunions are not bothersome to people who develop them. However, if they become extremely large and painful or begin to restrict movement of the affected toe, a doctor may be able to help.