A small bunion that forms on the side of the pinky toe is called a bunionette. Many people refer to this as a tailor’s bunion, and it occurs when the bottom bone on the pinky toe shifts or becomes larger. This name originated hundreds of years ago when tailors would work with their legs crossed, causing the pinky toes to touch the ground. This would cause a small bump to form on the base of the little toe. It often rubs against the shoe, causing pain and discomfort. A common reason for a tailor’s bunion to develop is from wearing shoes that do not fit correctly. Additionally, loose ligaments, tight calf muscles, or a foot that leans to the outside may be causes for a tailor’s bunion to form. Temporary relief may come from choosing shoes with adequate room in the toe area and wearing a protective pad over the bunion. If you have this condition, it is suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can provide you with permanent relief, which may include minor surgery for removal.
What Is a Bunion?
A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.
Why Do Bunions Form?
Genetics – Susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary
Stress on the feet – Poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can worsen existing bunions
How Are Bunions Diagnosed?
Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.
How Are Bunions Treated?
- Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
- Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
- Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
- Orthotics or foot inserts
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Woburn, MA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.