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Posts for tag: Bunions

By Foot & Ankle Institute
February 24, 2020
Category: Podiatry
Tags: Bunions  

Has your life changed since you developed bunions? When walking and standing are painful, it may be difficult to participate in hobbies, sports and activities you once enjoyed. Fortunately, our Houston foot and ankle doctors at Foot & Ankle Institute Dr. Asia Lo, Dr. Samuel Mendicino, Dr. Manish Patel, and Dr. Dhvanil Thakor offer bunion treatments that can ease your pain and improve your mobility.

Addressing your symptoms can slow the progression of your bunion

Bunions tend to worsen over time, particularly if you don't take a few steps to slow their progression. You've probably noticed that pressure from tight shoes or high heels worsens your pain. If you haven't already made a few footwear changes, now is the time to start. Shop for shoes that offer plenty of room in the toe box and cushion your foot.

No matter what type of shoes you wear, you're bound to experience a little irritation if you have a bunion. Applying adhesive pads to the bunions can help reduce friction and pressure due to footwear.

When new shoes and over-the-counter pain relievers aren't helpful, it's a good idea to schedule an appointment with our Houston foot and ankle doctors. They can offer several helpful treatment options including:

  • Night Splints: Wearing splints while you sleep improves the alignment of the bones in your foot and reduces bunion symptoms.
  • Orthotics: Orthotics keep your feet properly aligned when you wear shoes and also cushion your bunions. The shoe inserts are custom-designed for you by your podiatrist.
  • Physical Therapy: Stiffness in your big toe may make walking even more difficult. Physical therapy exercises are designed to increase mobility in your joints and strengthen the muscles that support your big toe.
  • Corticosteroid Injections: Injections can help decrease pain and reduce inflammation in your joints.
  • Surgery: Surgery is the only treatment option that can eliminate bunions. Your foot and ankle doctors may recommend bunion surgery if you have severe pain, trouble walking, or your bunion has begun to affect your lifestyle or daily activities. Surgery may involve removing your bony bump, realigning your joint, and removing excess tissue or damaged bone.

Are you tired of living with bunion pain? Call our foot and ankle doctors at Foot & Ankle Institute at (281) 531-4100 to schedule an appointment.

By Foot & Ankle Institute
July 25, 2017
Category: Foot Procedures
Tags: Bunions  

Are you experiencing pain in the area of your big toe? Do you notice redness and a bony bump? These symptoms commonly belong to an bunionsacquired foot deformity called a bunion. Also known as hallux valgus, bunions affect up to 23 percent of adults in the United States, say the National Institutes of Health. More sufferers are women, but men get bunions, too. Your West Houston, TX, podiatrists, Dr. Samuel Mendecino, Dr. Asia Lo and Dr. Manish Patel at the Foot & Ankle Institute, can help you deal with the pain, deformity and even immobility that happens with bunions. They'll get you back on your feet and feeling great again.

Bunions and how we get them

A bunion is located at the base of the big toe. Through repeated pressure or even through wearing tight, pointed shoes, that first toe joint can develop stiffness and inflammation. Left untreated, the toe itself begins to turn toward the second toe. Other foot deformities such as hammertoes happen, too.

When your podiatrist in West Houston, TX, sees bunions, he or she tries to understand how they may have developed so they may be treated properly. The staff at the Foot & Ankle Institute maintain that several factors lead to bunion formation:

  • Heredity (bunions can run in families)
  • Narrow shoes
  • High heels
  • Repetitive stress such as bouncing on the toes during a tennis game
  • Obesity
  • Age (typically over 60)

Treating bunions

While your foot doctor in West Houston cannot eliminate everything that produces bunions, they do advise wearing sensible shoes with wide toe boxes and heels no higher than one inch. Additionally, warm soaks comfort aching feet as do pain relievers such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen.

Of course, over the counter gel pads and moleskin cotton padding take pressure off this bony prominence. In addition, the doctors at Foot & Ankle Institute offer customized shoe inserts (also called orthotics) which correct gait problems, align the big toe joint and allow for foot flexibility.

As a final resort, the podiatrist may recommend surgery. Bunion surgeries aim to realign the toe and take pressure off the underlying structures such as the sesamoid bones). Just like orthotics, bunion surgeries are highly customized to accomplish the best results for individual patients. The professional staff at Foot & Ankle Institute has extensive experience in all kinds of podiatric surgeries. So you know that with proper rest, immobilization if needed and recovery time, your bunion surgery will produce great results.

Learn more

If you suspect you have a bunion or other foot deformity, please don't wait. Dr. Mendecino, Dr. Lo and Dr. Patel are the West Houston, TX, podiatrists you can trust to solve your problem. For a personal consultation, please contact the office at (281) 531-4100.

Health experts recommend that everyone walk at least 10,000 steps a day to stay healthy (one mile is equivalent to about 2,000 steps); therefore, we should be walking about 5 miles each day. This may seem like a lot but with all the running back and forth between work, home and errands it’s amazing how easy this is to do. However, if we are suffering from foot or ankle problems, just living the healthy active lifestyle we want can be hard. If you feel like you’ve tried every treatment possible without much success, then you may be contemplating whether surgery is the best choice for you. Here are some of the most common foot and ankle surgeries we perform in West Houston, and what you should expect from these procedures:


The National Institute of Health found that about 4.5 million people deal with bunion problems each year. A bunion is characterized as a hard protruding bone that develops near the base of the big toe, which may even cause the toe to turn inward towards the other toes. If symptoms are severe or persistent, surgery may be necessary. The majority of bunion surgeries are performed outpatient and only take about an hour. After the procedure, your foot will be wrapped and you’ll need to wear a boot for about four to six weeks after surgery to keep pressure off your foot.


Injuries, arthritis and even poorly fitted shoes can cause hammertoes. A hammertoe causes the affected toe to curl down and bend, and it often inflicts the second or third toe. If hammertoes make it difficult to move your toes or walk, then surgery is the best option. During surgery we will realign the toe and remove the deformed bone.

This surgery is also performed outpatient, so you won’t have to worry about a hospital stay. Recovery usually takes a few weeks and you may have to wear a special shoe after surgery. You will want to keep your foot elevated as much as possible, and you may even need crutches. If you’re considering hammertoe surgery we will be happy to sit down and talk with you about the recovery and healing process.

Ankle arthritis

Did you know that arthritis is the main cause of disability in America? Arthritis can happen to anyone no matter their age. While physical therapy, orthotics and steroids are often used to treat symptoms, there are some forms of ankle arthritis that don’t respond to nonsurgical treatments. When this happens, surgery is the optimal choice. One type of surgery is joint replacement, in which the damaged joint is replaced with an artificial ankle joint. This will increase range of motion and stability in the foot and ankle.

It’s important to keep in mind that foot and ankle surgery can be uncomfortable and that recovery can take several weeks. But keeping your feet elevated, going to physical therapy and following your doctor’s recommendations will ensure that your recovery is as speedy as possible. If in doubt, always call our office if you have any questions about your upcoming procedure or proper post-surgical care.