Also called Tailor's bunions, a bunionette is similar to a bunion, but occurs on the outside of the foot. It is a raised portion of skin that often becomes irritated and sore.
Bunionettes cause pain on the outside portion of the foot where it is raised. The pain or discomfort usually occurs when shoes that rub that area are worn. If the rubbing breaks the skin, an infection can result.
Causes and Risk Factors
Bunionettes are usually caused by footwear, especially shoes that constrict the front part of the foot, such as pointed shoes or high heels. Therefore, bunionettes are more common in women than in men. The term Tailor's bunion came from the fact that tailors used to have to sit in a certain position to work on shoes, which put pressure on the outsides of their feet, causing bunionettes.
In a small number of cases, bunionettes are caused by a congenital problem that leads to bowing of the long bones in the front of the foot. In such cases, the bone angles out slightly causing the bunionette.
Patients who suffer from bunions on the inside of their foot also often experience bunionettes on the outside.
An examination of the foot and, in rare cases, an X-ray is used to diagnose a bunionette. The X-ray can show the degree and form of the deformed bone causing the bunionette.
Treatment of bunionettes is almost always non-surgical. Changing shoes, especially to shoes that are wider at the toes or wearing sandals, can alleviate the discomfort of bunionnettes. Pads are also available to ease the pain.
In rare cases, surgery may be required to realign the bone so it does not point out and cause a bunionette.