There’s plenty of evidence that bunions cause pain and stiffness in the feet. The misalignment of the joint in the big toe can make it especially difficult to wear certain kinds of shoes or engage in some physical activities. However, people suffering from bunions often want to know exactly how far their pain can go. For example, can a bunion cause pain in the ankle? Can a bunion cause pain in the calves? Finally, can a bunion cause pain in the entire leg?
We will answer all of these questions and more, but first, let’s look at why and how bunions cause pain and discomfort in the first place:
Why Are Bunions Painful?
Bunions are misalignments of the joints in the big toe, which often result in a bone-like “growth” on the interior side of the foot. Since the joints in the big toe are not in their correct alignment, people experience pain when trying to stand up, sit down, walk, jog, run, or put on footwear. The pain is due to the pressure that different actions put on the joints.
Additionally, misaligned joints can lead to diminished tissue between the bones. Much like arthritis, damaged or diminished tissue between the bones in the big toe can cause pain. This is due to the fact that joint tissue acts as a barrier between bones so that they don’t come into direct contact. When they do contact or joints are not properly aligned, pain can (and will) occur.
How Far Can Bunion Pain Go?
Many people wonder if the pain they experience in their ankles, calves, or even thighs could be associated with bunions. So, how far can bunion pain go? Is leg pain caused by bunions, or could it be something else entirely?
In the early stages, bunion pain is almost always limited to the feet and toes. However, the extent of the pain will depend on the severity of your condition. If you have a small bunion that only causes minor stiffness and discomfort, it’s highly unlikely that the pain will extend to your ankles, calves, or thighs. However in severe cases, you may find yourself making accommodations in the way you walk to lessen the bunion pain and end up causing pain in your back, hips and legs.
Left untreated, bunions can lead to complications that can increase pain in the feet and legs. For example, bunions can cause the loss of the arch in the foot, misalignment of the toes, and chronic foot pain. These symptoms can subsequently lead to pain in the calves, as severe bunions can make it difficult to maintain normal motion of the feet and ankles. This, in turn, puts additional stress on calf muscles, which can cause moderate to severe pain over time.
In any case, you should always consult a doctor if you’re experiencing unexplained pain or discomfort in any part of the body.
How to Get Rid of Leg Pain Caused by Bunions
Fortunately, you can get rid of any leg pain you experience as a result of bunions by removing the source of the problem. A bunionectomy can either correct the malalignment of your joints or remove the bunion entirely. In any case, this minimally-invasive procedure will permanently fix the issue of bunions, thereby eliminating any bunion-related pain in your feet, ankles, or legs.
To learn more about bunion leg pain or to inquire about getting a bunionectomy, contact the experts at The Bunion Cure or download our free “Guide to Minimally Invasive Foot & Ankle Surgery”!