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What Is A Tailor's Bunion?

Find out if your painful foot condition could actually be a tailor’s bunion.

What is a tailor’s bunion?

A tailor’s bunion is a bony bulge found on the joint at the base of the pinky or small toe. Also referred to as a bunionette, a tailor’s bunion is less common than a bunion, which actually develops on the inside of the foot by the big toe.Bunions

This foot deformity got its name many centuries ago when tailors used to sit cross-legged with the outside of their feet touching the ground. The constant friction and rubbing between this fifth metatarsal bone of the foot and the hard ground led to this painful lump.

What are the causes of a tailor’s bunion?

The most common cause of a tailor’s bunion is poor or weak foot structure, which is often inherited. However, sometimes this bone structure can develop over time, causing the bone to stick out while also pushing the big toe in toward the smaller toes. Sometimes a bone spur can be mistaken for a tailor’s bunion.

What are some of the symptoms?

A tailor’s bunion produces pain, inflammation and redness near the base of the small toe where the bony protrusion is. These symptoms will often come about when wearing tight shoes and shoes that rub against the skin, causing irritation and swelling.

How will my West Houston podiatrist treat my tailor’s bunion?

The first line of defense against tailor’s bunion symptoms is typically non-surgical in nature. We will often recommend any of these popular treatment options:

Over-the-counter medications: Taking certain NSAIDS like ibuprofen can help reduce both discomfort and swelling.

Orthotics: Wearing custom-made orthotics (shoe inserts) can help correct the poor foot structure and improve movement.

Icing: Using an ice pack can help reduce pain and swelling.

Bunion pads: Wearing a bunion or callus pad can help reduce the amount of friction and pain caused by wearing shoes.

Injections: Sometimes steroid injections may be administered at the joint to reduce swelling.

Will I need surgery for my tailor’s bunion?

Surgery is usually a last resort, recommended only when your pain doesn’t go away after trying all non-aggressive treatments. Your West Houston podiatrist, Dr. Asia Lo, Dr. Sam Medicino or Dr. Manish Patel, will sit down and discuss your surgical options based on your bunion severity, your age, your physical activity, etc.

If you are experiencing pain or discomfort and have noticed the development of a bump at the base of the small toe, then this could be a tailor’s bunion. To receive a proper diagnosis, call your West Houston podiatrist at the Foot & Ankle Institute today!

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