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Bunions Specialist

American Surgeons Group

Podiatrists located in Homewood, Mokena, & South Chicago Heights, IL

Bunions are a common foot problem that can make it painful to walk or wear shoes. Board-certified podiatrists Timothy Horak, DPM, and Julia Shauger, DPM, treat bunions at American Surgeons Group in Homewood, South Chicago Heights, and Mokena, Illinois. For expert bunion treatment, call or book an appointment online today.

Bunions Q & A

What are bunions?

A bunion is a bony bump that forms on the inside of your foot at the base of your big toe joint. A bunion that develops on the outside of the foot near the little toe is called a bunionette or a tailor’s bunion. Bunions develop slowly and cause gradual changes in the structure of your foot.

Over time, pressure from the bunion causes the big toe to slant inward toward the second toe. The big toe joint also becomes swollen and sticks out. This can become progressively worse, making it difficult to wear tight-fitting shoes or walk comfortably.

Dr. Horak and Dr. Shauger create a personalized treatment plan to help you relieve bunion pain and return to your favorite activities.

How do I know if I have a bunion?

Bunions start out small, but gradually progress to a visible bump at the base of your big toe joint. The word bunion comes from the Greek word for “turnip” because a bunion typically resembles the round, red vegetable.

The most common symptoms of bunions include foot pain and swelling. Sometimes, corns or calluses develop where the first and second toes overlap.

What causes bunions?

Anyone can get a bunion, but they’re more common in people who wear narrow-toed shoes and high heels. Previous foot injuries, heredity and certain types of arthritis can also make you more susceptible to developing a bunion.

How do you diagnose and treat bunions?

First, Dr. Horak or Dr. Shauger perform a physical exam and review your medical history. They may be able to diagnose a bunion based on the physical exam alone, but may take an X-ray or ultrasound to look for joint damage and check the alignment of your toes.

Then, they discuss the best bunion treatment for your needs. Although the only way to reverse a bunion is with surgery, most bunion symptoms improve with nonsurgical treatments. Dr. Horak or Dr. Shauger may recommend one or more of the following treatments:

  • Wearing shoes that fit properly
  • Custom orthotics
  • Anti-inflammatory medicines
  • Cortisone injections

If painful bunions are making it difficult to walk or participate in activities you love, call American Surgeons Group or book online for prompt medical care.