Bunion


A bunion or as medically called Hallux Abductovalgus develops when the big toe points toward the second toe, forming a bump on the foot's inside edge. The bump is made of extra bone which the body forms in a defensive mode. The bump is formed because the big toe is not pointing ahead and throws off the alignment of the bones. Bunions do not happen overnight but gradually take shape. Because the big toe points toward the second toe, the angle of the bones slowly change throughout the years causing the bump. Bunions are common as they occur in 30% of the population of Westernized countries. Researchers in Australia and England have shown that the quality of life decreases as a bunion worsens, they have indicated that the big toe pain is associated with overall dissatisfaction with physical, psychological and social domains.

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Certain flawed structures of the foot are inherited that are more prone to cause bunions. Bunions themselves are not inherited. Wearing shoes that crowd the toes such as narrow shoes or high heels can cause symptoms leading to a bunion. Wearing high heel shoes which place the feet in a more pronatory position will also lead or worsen a bunion. In fact, it is thought that for this very reason women have a higher prevalence of bunions than men. Women are 10 times more likely than men to have bunions. The National American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society conducted a study that should that in the US, 88% percent of women wear shoes that are too small and 55% of women have bunions. Many women with bunions fear wearing open-toe shoes as aside from being uncomfortable, want to hide the appearance of their feet.

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At the site of the bunion, the patient may feel pain, a burning sensation, or even numbness. There may be inflammation, as well. Bunions are usually visually apparent. However, x-rays are also taken to fully assess the condition. This can determine to what degree the bones are unaligned. Furthermore, bunions are progressive in that they usually worsen over time without the proper treatment. Individuals who have Rheumatoid Arthritis or some other joint problems will have more odds of getting a bunion.

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Treatment is available with or without surgery. After an initial consultation and a review of the patient’s x-rays, the proper route can be determined. Most non-surgical treatments are early therapies for reducing pain, but not to get rid of the bunion. Some of these treatments include changing the type of shoe the patient wears to wider shoes, applying ice to lessen the inflammation, inserting padding in the shoes, avoiding activity that makes the patient stand for long periods of time along with other methods that can be discussed with Dr. Ravaei.

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There are many, many surgical procedures to fix bunion and most of these are modifications of each other. Some of these procedures involve removing the bump. Other ones involve correcting the structure of the bone where the problem lies. Some surgeon’s ask the patient not to put any weight on their feet for a period of six weeks. The procedure that Dr. Ravaei utilizes is truly revolutionary  in a sense that most patients are able to bear weight after the procedure. Another benefit that Dr. Ravaei provides his patients is that he performs the procedure in a fashion  that few can tell the patient had foot surgery. Please look at the before and after photos to get an idea. If you like more photos please e-mail us and we will be more than happy to provide you with these.

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