A bunion is a bony bump that appears on the big toe of the foot. The joint attached to the toe and foot is a called the metatarsophalangeal joint (MTP). Gradually over time, the big toe starts leaning towards the second toe and move on top of it, creating discomfort in the foot movement. A bunion is technically called hallux valgus. It is basically a structural problem caused in the foot joints, which results in non-alignment of feet. It is not necessary that bunion occurs on the big toe only. There have been cases where it occurred in the base toe, i.e. index toe. This is called bunionettes or tailor’s bunion.
Those suffering from bunion have red and sore toes. The common cause of bunion can be wearing narrow and tight shoes. But other than that, certain orthopaedic conditions can also cause a bunion. Usually, people having inherited structural bone defects and suffering from arthritis can be struck by a bunion. Also, people who put extra stress on their foot can also be affected by the bunion.
The symptoms of a bunion can be seen gradually over time. The most prominent symptoms of a bunion are bulging of the bigger toe joint. This indicates that the person is affected by the bunion. Other than this, there are some common bunion symptoms that should be noted.
The symptoms are:
- Swelling and redness around the big toe joint
- Persistent and intermittent pain in foot toes
- Restricted movements
- Numbness in the foot
- Skin thickening on the base of the affected toe joint
- Hardened skin under the foot
These are indicators showing that a person may be struck by the bunion. So, it is better to start taking preventive measures before it is too late.
It is crucial to diagnose the severity of the condition for people affected by the symptoms of a bunion. Orthopaedician can easily diagnose a bunion by observing and physical examination of the toe joints. A bunion can be diagnosed by a visible inspection. If the intensity of the bunion is mild, then the doctor may examine the bunion by asking the patient to make certain leg movements. If pain is observed in the toe joint, then medication is prescribed.
If the severity of the bunion is high, then the orthopaedic doctor may conduct an X-ray examination. An X-ray would be conducted when the doctor suspects an injury or major deformity in the toe bones. An X-ray diagnosis helps to figure out the exact deformity in the bones through the test. It would be easier to find the cause of bunion through X-ray.
Bunion Treatment and Cost in India
Bunion treatments are categorized into two main categories. The first treatment is a non-surgical treatment which is usually adopted by doctors for patients having mild bunion effects. Under the non-surgical treatment, certain preventive and pain-relieving medications are provided to the patient. Along with the medications, patients are advised about some basic changes. Some of those suggestions include wearing shoes with padded soles, wearing over-the-counter arch support for shoes, and taping the foot into a normal position. Such treatment would reduce the pain and gradually decrease the effect of the bunion. Taking these precautions can help in Bunion prevention.
The other type of bunion treatment is surgical treatment. Sometimes when non-surgical methods don’t work for the patient due to the severity of the bunion, surgeries are conducted by orthopaedic surgeons. Most of the surgeries correcting bunions are called bunionectomy. This surgery involves correction of the toe joint into a normal position and removing the swollen tissue of the toe joint. The cost of this surgery may be expensive, but those who have an inclusive health insurance policy are secure.
Health Insurance in India
With the growing inflation, the cost of treatment in India has gone up substantially. While the country is on the way to become a USD 5 trillion economy, still a vast majority of the people lose their life savings on medical expense. The lack of awareness about the importance of health insurance is one of the major reasons that results in medical expense related debt. Insurance companies in India have devised several affordable policies that are essential for everyone.
The insurance policy providers have customized plans for delivering the best health insurance policy to its customers. They frame their policies in a manner that suits the income and benefits of the customer. They have low premium plans with better benefits specially designed for lower incomes groups. Conditions such as bunion can be covered in the health insurance plans, and you can either avail cashless facility or get a reimbursement based on your health policy.
Other diseases in India
The life expectancy has improved in India, yet the number of people affected with various diseases has gone up. The changing lifestyle, along with substandard and chemical-laced food, to an extent, can be blamed for weakened immunity. The spread of communicable diseases is something that should be avoided with basic awareness and increased cleanliness. Some of the diseases affecting people in India are as following: