Early in my career I treated a lot of feet. As a freshly minted myofascial therapist I had been taught that we could “fix” bunions, hammer and claw toes. Well, I saw quickly that it is a common problem had plenty of practice in a short time!
A bunion is a deformation of the first metatarsal joint behind the big toe. It typically involves deviation of the big toe to the center of the foot while the metatarsal joint deviates the opposite direction. Bunions may be painless at first but over time inflammation of the first metatarsal joint causes swelling and pain. Gout, rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory conditions may complicate the picture.
It is surprising that there is little information available about the cause of bunions, despite wide agreement that there appear to be hereditary aspects, they seem to be more common in women and with age. Great! That helps NOT AT ALL get to the bottom of the average bunion!