A bunion is an enlargement of the joint at the base of the big toe—the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint—that forms when the bone or tissue at the big toe joint moves out of place. This forces the toe to bend toward the others, causing an often painful lump of bone on the foot. Since this joint carries a lot of the body’s weight while walking, bunions can cause extreme pain if left untreated. The MTP joint itself may become stiff and sore, making even the wearing of shoes difficult or impossible.

How Do You Get Bunions?

Bunions form when the normal balance of force that is exerted on the joints and tendons of the foot become disrupted. This can lead to instability in the joint and cause the deformity. They are brought about by years of abnormal motion and pressure over the MTP joint.