What is it?
A tailor's bunion is an enlargement or protruding segment of bone with possible soft tissue involvement on the outer aspect of the foot. It is usually considered to be a progressive condition meaning that without treatment, it will usually worsen with time. This type of bunion or bunionette as it is sometimes referred to, can become painful due to the unavoidable shoe pressure in that area. An interesting fact of little relevance is that you don't have to be a tailor to get a tailor's bunion. Historically, these problems were found frequently in tailors and it was believed that the condition resulted from their crossed leg sitting position while working.
What causes it?
There are four basic causes of tailor's bunions, which are generally agreed upon by most authorities. The first is that the involved metatarsal shaft or long bone on the outer aspect of the foot is abnormally curved. This excessive bending of the bone creates a ripe situation for the formation of a tailor's bunion. A second cause of a tailor's bunion is that of faulty mechanics during walking. In short, it is possible that biomechanical dysfunction during one's gait can cause problems of this type. Trauma or injury to the outer aspect of the foot can also precipitate the onset of a tailor's bunion. A fourth category of conditions that can cause the formation of a tailor's bunion is that of the arthridities. Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout can all play a causative role in a tailor's bunion deformity.
How do you treat it?
The effective treatment for a painful tailors bunion includes shoe modifications, protective foot padding, injection therapy, orthotics, and surgery. Obviously, the orthotics or supportive devices are used to alter the mechanics or functioning of the foot while surgery is used to correct or reduce the existing deformity. A tailor's bunion can be an annoying problem, which can worsen with continued shoe pressure and improper foot function. With early identification and proper treatment these problems can usually be readily managed.