How Bad is My Bunion?: How doctors judge bunion severity

In this video Kristen discusses her bunion surgery and shares before and after pictures.

 
Are all bunions the same? No. Some people have a small bump and no pain, others a large bump, arch loss, deviation of the toes, chronic foot or calf pain. Diabetics with neuropathy are at higher risk too.

 

We're at the forefront of bunion treatment and correction. Our nationally recognized bunion specialists believe in avoiding surgery whenever possible. We pride ourselves on educating patients about their foot condition and providing caring and truly individualized treatment options.

 

With the highest success rates in the country, our patients experience a safer, shorter and significantly less painful recovery. It's what we are known for.

Bunions are Categorized as Mild, Moderate or Severe. Below are Treatment Options for Each Category.

 

Mild Bunion Treatment

 

Bunion Treatment and Surgery Los Angeles
Mild bunion deformity

Technically, you can only “fix a bunion” with surgery, but many patients don't need it to get symptom relief. In its early stages, the progression of the bunion deformity can often be dramatically slowed. Removing pressure from the bunion area and balancing the tendon and ligament alignment are the primary goals of mild bunion treatment. For example, it is important to wear shoes that have sufficient room in the toe area to accommodate the bunion ─ that means softer leather shoes to mold to the deformity and platform type heels for better foot and arch support.

 

Your doctor may also advise the use of pads to protect the bunion from shoe pressure. Customized shoe inserts, called orthotics are made exclusively for your foot and are often used to correct the alignment of the arch and big toe joint. In some cases, physicians also use anti-inflammatory creams around the bunion.

 

Read about UFAI manufactured custom orthotics.



 Moderate Bunion Treatment

 

Bunion Surgeon Los Angeles
Moderate bunion deformity

A bunion is considered moderate when it pushes against the second toe. In fact, over time, the big toe can force itself under the second toe, causing it to buckle and form a "hammer toe."

 

If non-invasive treatment is not effective, and the joint is still causing discomfort, the doctor may suggest a bunionectomy to realign the big toe. With this procedure, the bunion head is moved over realigning the angled great toe joint back to a normal position. The tendons and ligaments are also balanced for a more normal pull on the toe.

 

In moderate bunion cases, you will experience a relatively rapid recovery. The procedure allows for immediate weight on the foot in a boot and return to tennis shoes in about a month. The choice of procedure best for each patient depends on the deformity size, the stiffness of the 1st metatarsal and the ease of realignment of the 1st metatarsal during the clinical exam.

 

Learn about the different bunion surgeries performed by UFAI's bunion specialists.

 

 

 

Severe Bunion Treatment

 

Bunion Surgery Los Angeles, Univeristy Foot and Ankle Institute
Severe bunion deformity

In severe hallux valgus bunion cases, the first long bone (metatarsal) in the foot dramatically shifts away from the second metatarsal, resulting in looseness and a large deformity.

In severe bunion corrections, a surgery known as the Lapidus procedure realigns the first metatarsal into its natural position. Using screws, the surgery holds the bone stable so it does not shift again and reduces the change of the bunion returning to basically none.

 

Surgery may also involve removing the enlarged portion of the bunion region, cutting and realigning the bone, and correcting the position of the tendons and ligaments.

 

By using a special plate with Lapidus procedures, our patients are able to put weight on their foot after only 2-3 weeks, rather than the typical 6-8 weeks.

 

UFAI patient Barbara shares how bunion surgery has changed her life.

 

  • Yelp
    Dr. Baravarian is a very caring and patient doctor. During my first visit with him he really took the time to listen to my concerns and talk to me about all my options regarding my chronic pain. I highly recommend Dr....
    Tina B.
  • From my first visit to the Foot and Ankle Institute in Santa Monica to my last physical therapy session, Dr. Baravarian and his team always took the time to answer all my questions and do everything possible to ensure...
    Chris
  • Yelp
    Really cares about his patients. Takes his time to find the problem, not a factory trying to get you in and out. So glad we found him.
    Mike M.
  • CustomerSure
    Exceptional care! The therapist really pays you personal attention. Something I especially liked was being asked my expectations for physical therapy at the onset of the treatment.
    Benji M.
  • CustomerSure
    You guys are 3 for 3 on surgeries for me. Thanks so much!
    Paige K.
  • Yelp
    I am 4 weeks post surgery now and just got my cast off today. Dr. Franson is the BEST foot specialist I have ever been to. He is extremely kind, he's caring and compassionate. He truly cares about his patients and has...
    Kathleen C.
  • CustomerSure
    I was treated at Sansum with no results. Dr. Campbell diagnosed my problem and took care of it. I am a fan!
    Joan C.
  • Yelp
    Quick, painless, fantastic service.
    Mike G.
  • CustomerSure
    Have already sent six folks to you. Love you guys!
    Lorna B.
  • ZocDoc
    Dr. Yau was able to diagnose my issue during my first appointment with him, something that other doctors hadn't done after several visits and tests.
    Anonymous
Same day appointments now available!
or call us:
  • University Foot & Ankle, a Preferred Provider to:
  • UCLA Health System - UCLA Medical Group
  • MPTF - Member Industry Health Network
  • Cirque du Soleil
  • ATP - Association of Tennis Professionals
  • And consulting physicians for:
  • C&S - Cedars-Sinai
  • Saint John's Health Center