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Tailor’s Bunion (Bunionette)

A Tailor’s bunion, or bunionette, is a bump that forms at the base of the little toe, on the fifth metatarsal bone. It’s a similar type of deformity to a bunion on the big toe, but is less common.

How is a Tailor’s bunion caused?

The bump is caused by the dislocation of the joint at the base of the little toe. Traditionally, it was a problem that was common to tailors who sat cross-legged for long periods of time, putting pressure on the outside of the feet. Nowadays, it’s usually caused by wearing shoes that don’t fit correctly, pushing the little toe inwards.

What are the signs of having a Tailor’s bunion?

Signs include having pain, redness and swelling around the joint. This is made worse by wearing narrow shoes that rub against the bump and irritate the foot.

How is it diagnosed?

During your first appointment, you’ll have an opportunity to discuss your symptoms with Mr Heidari, who will be able to advise you on the best course of treatment. He may also arrange X-rays to check for problems, as well as an MRI or CT scan.

What does treatment involve?

In most cases, it’s possible to treat Tailor’s bunion without surgery. Avoiding narrow shoes, using a toe spacer, along with applying an ice pack and taking anti-inflammatory painkillers (if advised by your doctor) may be enough to allow the bones to realign. Wearing bunionette pads can also help.

However, if you need to have surgery, this may involve removing a small amount of bone from the base of the joint of the little toe.

This information is written as a guide to your treatment but it is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Please contact us for advice if you are worried about any aspect of your health or recovery.