What’s the difference between bunions and bunionettes?

They say the three most important things about real estate are location, location, and location. The same is true for the difference between bunions and bunionettes. The name indicates where the abnormal toe joint is located. A bunion occurs in the metatarsalphalangeal joint (MTPJ) of the big toe, while a bunionette involves the MTPJ of the littlest toe.

In both cases, the tip of the toe leans toward the middle ones, and the MTP joint where it meets the foot bends outward into a shallow V-shape—the visible bump. It can be caused by inherited foot characteristics such as loose ligament capsules, flat feet, extra pressure on the largest or smallest toe, or weakened tendons and muscles that fail to hold the toe in its proper position. Pointed shoes that pinch the toes can be another factor.

Whichever of these toe deformities you may have, be sure to contact Dr. Victoria Melhuish at Sierra Foot & Ankle if the toe starts to drift or becomes stiff and painful. The earlier we begin treatment, the better the chance for avoiding surgery to correct the problem. Reach us by phone in Carson City or Gardnerville, NV at (775) 783-8037 or request an appointment online today.