Bunions might be hard to spot at first, and for many people, they’re not intrusive in everyday life. Eventually, some bunions lead to daily pain and need to be addressed. That fix used to mean surgery and months of rehab. Now, luckily, there are less invasive ways to treat bunions.
Is your bunion causing swelling, redness, and soreness near your big toe? Does that area also experience persistent or intermittent pain? If either is true, it’s time to see a doctor. At New Canaan Podiatry, Dr. Jennifer Tauber and her team will help you overcome bunion pain. From diagnosis to treatment, we can help you overcome this common foot deformity.
What are bunions?
A bunion is a bony bump that is typically found where the big toe meets the foot. You are either born with a bunion or develop the deformity over time from injury or from wearing ill-fitting shoes that force the joint into an unnatural position.
Women are more likely to develop bunions because they’re more likely to wear high heels, which force feet into a shape that stretches the big toe joint. According to an article in the journal Arthritis Care & Research, 23 percent of people aged 18 to 65 and 36 percent of people over age 65 have bunions.
When bunions become painful
The bunion itself is not painful, and you can go years with a bunion without any pain. The formation of a bunion and the resulting movement of toes is not inherently painful — although it can make finding shoes that fit the bunion a hard task.
Harvard Medical School says bunion pain begins when the bursa, a fluid-filled sac that surrounds and cushions the joint, grows inflamed, leading to the entire joint stiffening and turning quite painful.
Bunions aren’t reversible, but they can be treated with nonsurgical measures before more invasive procedures are needed. Better-fitting shoes, orthotics, padded insoles, and anti-inflammatory medication can be used alone or in any combination to treat bunion pain.
How Supartz injections alleviate bunion pain
In the past, if the above measures failed, surgery was often the next option.
The most common surgeries either removed the bunion itself, added screws and plates to keep the big toe in its normal position, or repaired the tendons and ligaments that hold the toe in place. Although most of these procedures are done on an outpatient basis, they have long recovery times that limit foot movement.
Supartz™ injections look at bunions in a different way. Instead of correcting the bunion itself, these injections treat the real source of the pain, the inflamed bursa.
Supartz is a solution of sodium hyaluronate that mimics natural lubricants and cushioning agents in joints. The injection, which uses ultrasound to pinpoint an exact spot in the bursa, restores the sac’s ability to cushion the joint. This leads to immediate pain relief as the pressure on the joint is alleviated. Best of all, no surgery is needed!
If your bunions are painful and have turned walking into an agonizing chore, it’s time to see a podiatrist. Dr. Tauber and her team at New Canaan Podiatry can help you alleviate your bunion pain with Supartz injections. To learn more about bunion solutions and the injections, call us or make an appointment online today.