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What is a Tailor’s Bunion?

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15 Apr, 2024

What is a Tailor’s Bunion?

Tailor's bunions, also known as bunionettes, are a common foot condition characterized by bony protrusions that form at the base of the little toe. While they may seem less prevalent than traditional bunions, they can still cause significant discomfort and affect one's quality of life.

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In this brief article brought to you by Mid Penn Foot & Ankle Specialists, we give you a short introduction to the causes, symptoms, risk factors, and treatment options for tailor’s bunions. If you are suffering from chronic or severe foot conditions, then consider consulting a licensed podiatrist. Call Mid Penn Foot & Ankle Specialists to schedule an appointment with a foot specialist today.

Tailor’s Bunion 101

Tailor's bunions develop gradually over time due to various factors, primarily due to pressure and misalignment of the bones in the foot. Unlike traditional bunions that affect the big toe joint, tailor's bunions affect the joint at the base of the fifth metatarsal bone.

This condition often results from wearing tight or ill-fitting shoes, particularly those with narrow toe boxes that squeeze the toes together and places increased pressure on the outside of the foot.

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Risk Factors for Tailor's Bunions

While wearing tight, narrow, or high-heeled shoes regularly can exacerbate foot problems and contribute to bunionette formation, certain foot shapes such as a high arch or a flat foot can predispose individuals to bunions and bunionettes.

Further, individuals with a family history of bunions or foot deformities are more susceptible to developing tailor's bunions. Jobs that require prolonged standing or repetitive stress on the feet can also increase the risk of developing bunions and related conditions.

Symptoms of Tailor’s Bunions

We want to start by noting that symptoms can vary in severity, with some individuals experiencing mild discomfort while others may face significant pain and mobility issues. Still, the most common symptoms associated with tailor's bunions include:

  • Pain and tenderness at the base of the little toe, especially when wearing shoes or walking.
  • Difficulty fitting into narrow or restrictive footwear.
  • Inflammation and redness around the affected area.
  • Corns or calluses developing over the bony protrusion.
  • Limited range of motion in the affected toe.

Treatment Options for Tailor's Bunions

While rare cases of tailor's bunions may require surgical intervention, early diagnosis and appropriate management can allow for non-invasive treatment and prevent complications and deformity. Treatment options include:

  • Switching to wide-toe shoes with ample cushioning and support can relieve pressure on the bunionette and improve comfort.
  • Custom orthotic inserts can address underlying biomechanical issues by helping realign the foot and reduce excessive pronation or supination.
  • Using protective padding or splints over the bunionette can cushion the area and prevent further irritation.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may be recommended to alleviate pain and inflammation.
  • Stretching exercises and strengthening routines prescribed by a physical therapist can improve foot function and reduce discomfort.
  • Corticosteroid injections may be considered for short-term pain relief in cases of severe inflammation.

A licensed foot doctor can assess each individual's condition and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan based on their unique needs.

Consult a Licensed Podiatrist

For accurate diagnosis and proper foot care, consider meeting with a licensed podiatrist in Emigsville. Residents in the area are welcomed to call Mid Penn Foot & Ankle Specialists to schedule a convenient appointment or arrange a walk-in for as soon as possible.

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