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Hallux Abducto Valgus (Bunions)

Symptoms:

A bunion is a valgus deviation of the hallux commonly associated with an exostosis on the 1st metatarso-phalangeal joint. When irritated by tight or ill-fitting shoes bunions can become red and swollen.

Causes:

Hallux Abducto Valgus is caused by two contributing factors:

A short 1st metatarsal and Excessive pronation

A short 1st metatarsal will adduct and drop to meet the ground during the toe-off phase of gait. Excessive pronation causes excessive forces to be applied to the medical forefoot area, with increased load on the 1st metatarsal head in an adductory direction, hence the term ‘Hallux Abducto Valgus’.

Some bunions are caused by arthritis or trauma. Due to excessive pronation, forces load the medial forefoot area. This increased adductory load on the 1st metatarsal shaft causes rotation of the shaft, which then requires the hallux (big toe) to compensate by abducting.

Treatment:

Orthotics are useful in the treatment of primary and secondary stage bunions. Footlogics orthotics control excess pronation (although not forefoot adductus) and help reduce load on the medial forefoot area, thus relieving pressure from the 1st metatarso-phalangeal Joint. Surgery may be required for tertiary stage bunions, to enable the patient to wear shoes. Post-operative prescription of Footlogics orthotics is recommended to treat the underlying biomechanical anomaly, and prevent the condition from recurring.