American Foot and Ankle Specialists

Posts for tag: bunions

February 26, 2018
Category: Foot Care
Tags: bunions  

Bunions, the bony lumps on the inside of the feet, aren't always just abnormal-looking. For some patients at American Foot & Ankle bunionsSpecialists in Sun City and Scottsdale, AZ, bunions are painful and make walking difficult. In these instances, Dr. Michael Stegman and Dr. John Erotas have a variety of ways to treat the pain and help you regain proper movement. They discuss some of these treatments below.

Over-the-counter options

A common complication associated with bunions is the friction that is placed on them while wearing shoes. For this problem, your Sun City and Scottsdale podiatrist will make recommendations on specific products that can be purchased at your local drugstore. There are splints available to help hold the big toe away from the others; the goal is to gradually guide the joint back into place. There are also gel-filled or cushioned pads that can provide a barrier between your bunion and the inside of your shoe; they often look like a sleeve that fits over the front part of the foot and the big toe. Wearing shoe inserts in combination with a bunion pad ensures that your feet are positioned properly and the pressure is evenly distributed.

Prescription options

Sometimes severe bunions do not respond well to "one-size-fits-all" treatments. In cases such as these, your podiatrist may recommend custom orthotics to wear inside your shoes. Orthotics are made from your specific measurements, ensuring a perfect fit that accommodates your needs. You may also need to wear specialized shoes that allow enough room in the toe box for the displaced joint.

Surgical options

If your bunion has caused you unrelenting pain for at least a year, your podiatrist may suggest surgery. This is especially true if the bunion has led to additional issues like hammertoes or bursitis. With bunion surgery, the main goal is to reposition the big toe back into place; this is accomplished by realigning the ligaments, bones, and muscles in the immediate area of the bunion. Recovery from foot surgery can be lengthy, so most physicians advise giving conservative treatments time to work first.

To have your bunions or any foot-related problem evaluated, contact American Foot & Ankle Specialists in Sun City and Scottsdale, AZ today.

February 07, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: bunions  

Bunions are generally caused by a foot deformity. However, there is no need to have to suffer the pain of bunions before seeking bunionstreatment from your Sun City and Scottsdale, AZ, podiatrists, Dr. Michael Stegman and Dr. John Erotas at American Foot & Ankle Specialists. For the most effective bunion treatment, contacting their podiatry office will lead to important information that can help relieve your bunion pain and symptoms.

What are Bunions?

A bunion is a bump on the side of the big toe. However, the visible aspect of it is more than you think. The change in the bones leads for the bones to be thrown out of alignment. This produces the bump you see. This can progressively get worse if it is ignored. Most symptoms don’t appear till later stages, so most people don’t even have symptoms.

Some symptoms of bunions include:

  • Pain
  • Soreness
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Burning sensation
  • Numbness

Most often these bunions are caused by a faulty foot structure. However, wearing shoes that crowd the toe can make deformity worse, but it won’t cause a bunion. Symptoms may develop sooner in these instances. This most likely explains why bunions occur in more women than men.

Your Sun City and Scottsdale podiatrists, Dr. Stegman or Dr. Erotas at American Foot & Ankle Specialists, can offer helpful treatment methods for your bunion. Oftentimes x-rays are taken in order to determine the degree of the deformity and to assess any changes over time. It’s important to understand that bunions do not go away, but they can be treated to alleviate pain associated with their existence.

Some of the most common treatment methods include: orthotics, changes in footwear, anti-inflammatory medication, injections or icing. In the most severe cases, surgery may be required. To learn more about what will help your bunion pain today, contact your podiatrist such as Dr. Stegman or Dr. Erotas from American Foot & Ankle Specialists today by calling 480-483-9000 for their Scottsdale office or their Sun City office at 623-977-8388.


Bunion Treatment


There are more than 3 million cases of bunions each year.  A bunion is a bony bump that forms on the joint at the base of the big toe.  Bunions, because they protrude into the side of a person’s shoes, can cause toe stiffness and severe pain.  Constant rubbing against the side of the shoe leads to cuts, sores, inflammation, and even infections.  


The best thing to do is find treatment right away because there is a distinct reason you have a bunion that keeps getting larger and we will figure out why.  Often, this reason has to do with the shoes you are wearing.  Shoes with a tight narrow toe box such as high heels are often a main cause of bunions.  


At the American Foot and Ankle Specialists, we have helped patients for over 20 years get rid of bunion pain and stop bunions from continuing to grow.  As a podiatrist, there are a variety of treatment methods I implement to heal bunion pain.  


Corrective Footwear


The first thing to do is of course wear correct shoes.  Based on your foot type and lifestyle, we will recommend shoes that are both comfortable and support your feet.  By taking this immediate pressure off of your bunion, you will see fast relief and swelling will come down.  Prescription orthotics are also valuable in treating bunion pain because they too relieve the stresses and pressures put on a bunion during walking.  Our prescription orthotics are custom molded to your feet providing maximum support.  


Additionally, wearing bunions pads and taking anti-inflammatory medication will help decrease inflammation.  Bunion pads also protect the bunion from scraping against the side of your shoes allowing any cuts to heal and preventing additional wounds.  


In severe cases, where bunions do not heal from conservative treatments or the bunion is large enough where pain in incessant, we often recommend bunion surgery, which is a minor surgical procedure that can completely eliminate the bunion.  


It is time to see a podiatrist when you are experiencing foot or big toe pain.  Come into either our Sun City podiatry or Scottsdale podiatry office.  You may be finding it difficult to fit into your shoes because of the bunion and have decreased movement of your big toe.  Treating bunions for over 20 years, our podiatrist are experienced at not only relieving pain but figuring out how to both decrease bunion size and the progression of bunion growth.  


Schedule Your Consultation!


Call 480-483-9000 and schedule your consultation today!


By Michael Stegman

By American Foot & Ankle Specialists
August 09, 2016
Category: Foot Care
Tags: bunions  

Don’t let bunion problems keep you from enjoying your life. Find out what we can do to alleviate your symptoms.

While there are some people who have bunions and don’t even notice a thing, there are others who are dealing with more severe bunions that cause pain and discomfort throughout the day. From the office of your Scottsdale podiatrists Dr. Michael Stegman and Dr. BunionsJohn Erotas, find out what could be to blame for your bunion and what treatment options are available.

Bunion Causes:  A bunion affects the joint at the base of the big toe and causes it to lean inward toward the other toes. Of course, it isn’t always possible to figure out why a bunion develops. There could be a genetic component that predisposes someone to developing a bunion. However, it’s also possible that certain conditions like osteoarthritis or joint problems could be to blame.
Some people do believe that wearing high heels or poorly fitted shoes can cause bunions. While there is much debate, one thing is for certain: wearing these types of shoes can certainly make your bunion worse, as it can put unnecessary pressure on the toe joint and cause inflammation of the skin.  The primary cause, however, agreed upon by experts is an improper function of the foot, and walking on that foot without proper support, especially in those flimsy flip-flops and sandals, flats and unsupportive shoes.

Bunion Treatments:  Here are some of the most common treatment options that your Scottsdale foot doctor may recommend:

Proper Footwear: For those who were able to catch their bunion problems early, one major treatment option is to only wear shoes that fit properly and give your toes room to move around. You will also want to stay away from high heels, and tight or pointed shoes that don’t offer the foot enough support and also cram the toes together. By opting for bunion-friendly shoes you can prevent the problem from getting worse.

Orthotics:  You may also want to consider wearing prescription orthotics, or an OTC device prescribed or recommended by your podiatrist.   These can help to make the foot function better and alleviate pressure from the joint. Those shoe inserts that are purchased at a local drugstore, grocery store, department store or even running shoe speciality stores, are usually not enough.  These one-size-fits-most inserts are often not enough to provide relief or improvement in function.  The drug store type of support or chose your foot number cannot tell where YOUR foot functions properly, only a podiatrist can.  This is why you will want to consider getting custom-made orthotics from us to properly address your specific foot needs.

Medications:  The type of medication you use to treat your bunion symptoms will really depend on how severe your problem is. Mild symptoms can often be relieved through over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen. However, prescription medications or even cortisone injections may be the best course of action for more serious cases.

Surgery:  In severe cases, surgery may be the only answer.  But like any other medical problem, if you catch it early and use a properly supportive orthotic you may be able to delay or AVOID surgery all together!

It’s time to talk bunion treatments with us to find out which ones are right for you. But first, we should examine your feet to make sure that your symptoms are truly caused by a bunion. 

Schedule an appointment with American Foot & Ankle Specialists in Scottsdale, AZ today!

Bunion Treatment And Care




There are a range of treatment options available depending on the severity of your bunion and the amount of pain that it causes.  At the American Foot and Ankle Specialists, we first implement conservative nonsurgical treatments that often relieve pain and take the pressure off of the bunion.  


One of the first strategies is to change shoes.  Since tight, restrictive shoes are often the cause of a bunion, make sure to stop wearing high heels and any shoes with a narrow toe box.  You also to wear shoes that match up with your foot shape.  For example, some shoes are only for flat feet while others are for high arched feet. 

You need to find out your foot shape and then shoes and sneakers that help to support your feet rather than harm it.  We can help you with this recommendation.  Next, we also create custom molded orthotics for our patients to further foot support.  


Prescription orthotics provide the maximum amount of support because they align with your individual walking pattern and foot shape. Padded shoe inserts distribute the pressure of your feet when you move them helping to reduce symptoms. 


Reducing Bunion Pain and Size


To decrease the pressure placed on a bunion, we can help you tape and pad your foot into a normal position.  Bunion pads also protect your bunion against rubbing the side of your shoes, which is often the cause of pain, redness, swelling, and irritation. Anti-inflammatory medications may also be helpful in reducing inflammation as well as applying ice.  


In some cases and when conservative treatments do not provide relief for your symptoms, surgery is recommended.  Fortunately, bunion surgery it a minor procedure, where the goal is to relieve the discomfort by returning your toe to the correct position. 


A surgical procedure often involves removing swollen tissue from around the big toe joint, straightening your big toe, realigning the long bone in the back part of your foot at the big toe, and joining the bones of your affected joint.  It is even possible that you may be able to walk on your foot immediately after a bunion procedure though full recovery usually takes a few weeks.  


Bunion surgery is not recommend unless it is causing your frequent pain.  


As a podiatrist, I can guarantee you that we will find a solution that works to stop the growth of your bunion and relieve any pain you may be experiencing.  You can visit us at either our Sun City podiatry or Scottsdale podiatry locations.    


Schedule Your Consultation Today!


Call 480-483-9000 and schedule your consultation today!


By John Erotas