The Answers You Need to Settle Your Foot Care Questions

Sometimes it can be difficult to find the right answers to your questions. Other times it can be too embarrassing to even ask the right questions. That is why we take the initiative to answer common foot care queries without the need to be asked. Come get the answers you and your feet need.

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  • What causes bunions?

    Causes of bunionsIf you have a bunion, you most likely inherited a foot structure that makes you prone to developing the problem. Before you place the blame of your foot problems on your parents, though, you should also consider other causes of bunions, like the way in which you walk for instance. Abnormal biomechanics can put your feet at risk as well. Flat feet especially tend to overpronate (roll too far inward with each step) which can place excessive pressure around the base of the big toe. You don’t have to accept your fate, however. Orthotics can help correct biomechanical issues as well as provide support for a faulty foot structure. Your choice of footwear can make a difference, too. Although high heels and shoes that are too tight have often been associated with the condition, they don’t actually cause bunions, but rather make them worse by squishing toes out of position as well as put pressure on the joint. Save those narrow, pointy-toed pumps for special occasions only and instead choose shoes with low heels and a wide and deep toe box for plenty of wiggle room. That way you’ll be less likely to carry on the family tradition!

    If you have questions or want to learn more, call our Houston, TX office at (281) 497-2850.

  • Can kids get bunions?

    Can Kids Get Bunions?When children form a bump on the inside of the foot by the big toe, it is called a juvenile bunion. It usually develops because of an inherited foot structure that includes loose ligaments in the joints, a flat arch structure, and/or a long first metatarsal connected to the big toe. In some cases, the problem can start showing up as early as 6 or 7 years of age, and the majority of cases occur in girls.

    We are less likely to encourage surgery for a child’s bunion, because the bones are still growing and care must be taken to keep from damaging the growth plate. More likely treatments include advice on shoe choice, custom orthotics to realign the pressure on the foot, and things like stretches and night splints. Managing the problems conservatively is preferable, at least until your child has reached full growth in the feet, around 15 – 17 years of age.

    If you are concerned about your child’s flat feet or possible bunion formation, give Parker Foot & Ankle in Houston, TX a call at (281) 497-2850 and set up an appointment so we can evaluate the feet and decide what is best to be done.

  • When is bunion surgery necessary?

    Many times your bunion symptoms can be relieved with non-surgical treatment, such as changing your shoe styles, using splints at night in the early stages, routine stretching, various pain medications or therapies we may prescribe, or the use of custom orthotics to rebalance your foot. However, there are certain situations in which we would recommend bunion surgery:

    • When you have unrelieved severe pain that keeps you from walking
    • When your toe joint is constantly inflamed and swollen
    • If the toe is stiff and unbendable
    • If your toe is moving toward your second toe or they start to overlap

    Correcting bunions through surgery often involves shaving away part of the bone. The bone may also be cut, repositioned, and held in place with screws or pins. Tendons may be shortened or lengthened to keep the problem from returning. There are over a hundred specific procedures, and you need an expert who has done many bunion surgeries to determine which one(s) you need. Trust the high standard of foot care from Dr. Robert Parker at Parker Foot & Ankle in Houston, TX. Call us today at (281) 497-2850 to schedule your appointment, or use our online form

    When surgery is necessary

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  • How long will I be out of work after Bunion surgery?

    If you are able to have the Z-bunionectomy,  and you have a sedentary job, you should be able to return back to work in about a week. If you are on your feet for most of the day we estimate that you should be able to return to work in about 2 weeks.

    However, if your bunion is more severe you will need to take somewhere between 6-8 weeks off and you may require a cast for part of this time.

    The only way to determine exactly how long you will need to be out if to have a complete exam and x-rays done by a qualified podiatrist.

    Below is an article where Dr. Parker is featured speaking about the Z-bunionectomy. A surgical procedure often used to correct a Bunion with minimal down time. Dr. Parker was the first podiatrist in Houston to perform the procedure.

    Dr. Parker's Article

  • How long is the recovery from bunion surgery?

    Your recovery from bunion surgery depends on how severe your condition is and how in-depth your procedure has to be. Complicated treatment involves a longer healing period. A complete recovery generally takes between five and six months, but you can usually return to your activities well before then. You’ll need to avoid weight-bearing on the affected foot for a couple weeks following your procedure. Then you can slowly begin walking while wearing a brace or special boot. After about six weeks, you can usually begin to participate in activities again—if you are careful. You may be able to wear normal shoes as well, though swelling throughout the day may still make this uncomfortable. After several months of progressive healing, you’ll finish your follow-up appointments.

    Don’t let the recovery from bunion surgery keep you from getting the help you need to relieve your pain. Waiting too long allows the problem to get worse and can increase the healing time. Contact Parker Foot & Ankle in Houston for more information or an appointment by calling (281) 497-2850 or using our website contact form.

  • Are bunions hereditary?

    You do inherit bunions to some degree. You inherit your foot structure, biomechanics, and predisposition for the issue from your parents. If one or both of your parents had trouble with bunions, you have a high chance of developing one as well. However, while you inherit the disposition for the problem, you are not guaranteed to develop one. You can take steps to decrease your odds that your big toe will displace, as well as slow the progression of any problem. Don’t wait until the bump bothers you to deal with your discomfort. You may be able to avoid the pain altogether by taking care of your feet now. If you notice any changes in your big toe and you’re concerned about bunions, contact Parker Foot & Ankle here in Houston, TX, for more information or an appointment. Call (281) 497-2850 or use our website contact page to reach us.

  • Do I have to have surgery for a Bunion?

    Surgery is the only way to correct a bunion. This procedure is called a Bunionectomy and there multiple types of this surgery. It is important to know that the sooner we diagnose and treat a bunion the easier it is to correct. Correction of a bunion using the easier Z-bunionectomy enables you to return back to a normal athletic shoe in about 10 days. If the angle of the bunion progresses past a certain point, then a more aggressive type of procedure called a Lapidus Bunionectomy is required which entails a longer recovery time in a fiberglass cast. 

  • What causes a bunion?

    Bunions seem to form in women more than men, although we do see our fair share of men with this condition. If you are suffering from a bunion, you can probably thank your Mother or Grandmother. Usually, this is passed down from the women in our lives. Often, the type of shoe that is worn also plays a factor into who will get a bunion and who will not. High heeled, narrow, tight fitting shoes seem to contribute to the condition.

    So, if your Mom has bunions, and you like pointy toe pumps, it is likely that you will be next in line!

    High heels with pointed toe boxes aggravate bunions in Houston, TX

  • What is a Bunion?

    The typical bunion is additional bone that forms in combination with a misalignment of the big toe. The misalignment forces the big toe to shift (Hallux Valgus). The enlarged joint can become very painful, red, and swollen. Additionally, a small bursa (fluid filled sac) can form causing more pain and discomfort.

    There is another type of bunion which forms on the outside of the foot at the fifth toe. This is called a Tailor's Bunion. It also is a misalignment of the joint and will lead to pain and redness making it difficult to walk and wear shoes comfortably.