Big toe pain

    Auteur: Podiatre Montreal

    Foot bunions, also known as hallus valgus, are relatively common conditions that can cause fairly intense pain in the feet. They are most frequently located in the big toe, but bunions can also develop. Hallus valgus can have multiple causes such as the presence of very pronounced flat feet or certain neuromuscular diseases, or by the amputation of the second toe. They can also be generated by wearing unsuitable footwear such as high-heeled shoes, which makes women more susceptible to developing this type of injury. The use of a health care professional is then essential to be able to relieve the pain and remedy this type of affection which in the long term can lead to bone malformation if the toe joint remains malformed for too long.

    In fact, treatments exist to alleviate the pain that can manifest itself in the form of an unpleasant twinge. The appropriate health care professional to diagnose hallus valgus is the Podiatrist who, depending on the situation and the degree of damage, may propose various treatments, including manual therapy, custom-made orthotics, medication or surgery. It is indeed essential to quickly set up a treatment to remedy valgus hallucinations and to recover a healthy joint. This early treatment reduces the risk of complications and, above all, reduces the symptoms of the bunion, which is obviously the most common form of pain.

    The cause of bunions and big toe pain

    Hallus valgus is a deformity of the foot taking the form of a bony protrusion on the inner face of the big toe, which can lead to an overlap of the big toe towards the other toes with a deviation outside the first phalanx and a subluxation of the sesamoid bones. While this malformation may seem innocuous and is often asymptomatic, it is in fact quite serious and can have significant consequences, which is why it is essential to be concerned about it as soon as possible. There are many possible causes for the development of this type of lesion, although the congenital factor plays an important role. Indeed, bunions on the feet can occur from a very young age or even from birth, with the baby having a bone deformity in the big toe. In these cases, it is very likely that other people in the family circle suffer from this type of injury, with the possibility of hypermobility of the joints, among other things.
    Other causes can also cause hallus valgus and its symptoms in adulthood, such as the use of repeatedly tightened shoes, which will result in trauma to the joint and excessive shoe friction. In this context, it is quite common for high heel shoes to be the culprit, as these are worn by the female population, women are more likely to experience bunion symptoms such as toe pain, frequent foot pain and visible deformity of the foot. Other causes of this bone deformity include flat feet that are very pronounced or neuromuscular diseases that lead to foot deformities such as polio, or the amputation of the second toe, which will unbalance the entire mechanism of the foot and create a bunion-like lesion in the foot. Fortunately, today there are treatments available for halluxes and these conditions for which a health professional will be able to propose the appropriate solution.

    Consequence of the non-treatment of onions on the toes

    While bunions are often asymptomatic with only a bump on the toe, they can still cause severe toe pain and joint pain and if left untreated can lead to serious joint damage that may require surgery. Surgery is rare, but is one of the possible complications of hallus valgus. The symptoms of a bunion are easy to identify for a medical consultation: joint pain in the toes, the appearance of a bump on the toe, a twinge when using the foot and while walking. Among the consequences of a bunion are damage to the toe joint, but also muscle weakness in the feet. It is therefore essential to properly manage this lesion and to pay particular attention to it, especially when suffering from neuromuscular diseases.

    How to treat bunions and toe pain

    If by any chance, you are likely to suffer from recurring pain in your feet, it is preferable to consult without delay in order to limit the risk of aggravating the lesions. To this end, it is preferable to make an appointment with the appropriate professional to learn how to treat these lesions, such as our doctor who practice in a podiatric clinic specialized in this type of condition. This professional will first evaluate the injury by means of one or more x-rays in order to establish the diagnosis. Following this, the health professional consulted will be able to propose a treatment to remedy and heal valgus hallus. This treatment may consist of manual therapy, but also of medication to alleviate the pain or the installation of custom-made orthotics (pads or other) to help the toe regain its place and correct its position.

    As a last resort, it will be possible to use surgery to repair the joint if it has been too badly damaged, but this is rare even if the surgical treatment is very effective. A qualified health professional will of course be able to propose a treatment, but also a prevention of the appearance or recurrence of this type of injury with many tips such as “avoid walking barefoot” especially when getting out of the shower, but also the wearing of comfortable shoes, the latter being very often responsible for the appearance of a hallus valgus outside of traumatic causes or specific illnesses.


    • 1
      Podiatre Montréal
      1826 Sherbrooke O,
      Montreal, QC H3H 1E4