BUNION (Hallux Valgus)
BUNION (Hallux Valgus)
DESCRIPTIONBunions are overgrowth of tissue at the base of the great (big) toe. Bunions may be congenital or hereditary. A bunion often impairs athletic performance until it is corrected with medical treatment or surgery.
Appropriate health care includes:
Self-care for mild cases.
Surgery for persistent or severe cases to remove the overgrown tissue and correct the position of the bones.
SIGNS & SYMPTOMSAn inward-turned great toe that may overlap the second--and sometimes the third--toe.
Thickened skin over the bony protrusion at the base of the great toe.
Fluid accumulation under the thickened skin (sometimes).
Foot pain and stiffness.
Inflammation and swelling around the child's bunion.
Irritation of the bony bump when the big toe is directed toward the little toe.
RISK FACTORSNarrow-toed, high-heeled shoes that compress your child's toes together.
Family history of foot disorders.
PREVENTING COMPLICATIONS OR RECURRENCEInstructions for your child:
Wear wide-toed, well-fitting shoes with strong arch supports.
Don't wear high heels or shoes without room for your toes in their normal position.
Don't wear socks or stockings that are too tight.
After treatment, prevent a recurrence by placing a 1/4-inch thickness of foam rubber between the big toe and the second toe.
Your own observation of symptoms.
Medical history and physical exam by a doctor or podiatrist.
X-rays of the child's foot.
Infection of the bunion, especially in children with diabetes mellitus.
Inflammation and arthritic changes in other joints caused by walking difficulty, which places abnormal stress on the child's foot, hip, and spine.
Excessive bleeding or infection if surgery is required.
Usually improves with treatment and preventive measures to guard against recurrence.
HOME CAREInstructions for your child:
Before bedtime, separate the great toe from the others with a foam-rubber pad.
When wearing shoes, place a thick, ring-shaped adhesive pad over the bunion.
Use arch supports to relieve pressure on the bunion. These are available in shoe-repair shops.
MEDICATIONUsually not necessary for this disorder unless infection develops.
See Medications section for information regarding medicines your doctor may prescribe.
No restrictions as long as the child's bunion is protected from irritation. If surgery is necessary, the child can resume normal activities gradually afterward. Advise your child to walk on his heels until the surgical site heals. Elevate the foot of the child's bed to reduce swelling over the incision. Your child should avoid vigorous exercise for 6 weeks following surgery.
DIET & FLUIDS
During recovery from surgery, serve the child a well-balanced diet that includes extra protein, such as meat, fish, poultry, cheese, milk, and eggs. Your child should increase fiber and fluid intake to prevent constipation that may result from decreased activity.
OK TO GO TO SCHOOL?Yes, when condition and sense of well-being will allow.
CALL YOUR DOCTOR IF
Your child has a bunion that is interfering with normal activities.
Signs of infection (fever, headache, heat, increased tenderness, or pain) develop during treatment or after surgery.