A bony bump that forms on the joint at the base of the big toe.


A bunion forms when some of the bones in the front part of the foot move out of place. This causes the big toe to get pulled toward the smaller toes. It also forces the joint at the base of the big toe to stick out. Risk factors include wearing shoes that are too tight, narrow or pointed.


With bunions, a bulging bump forms on the outside of the base of the big toe. It's common to have swelling or soreness around the big toe joint. It also might be harder to move the toe. Bunion pain can be ongoing. Or it can come and go. Corns or calluses often appear where the first and second toes rub against each other.


Bunion treatments often involve simple changes to ease the pain. For example, it can help to wear roomy shoes and use bunion pads or cushions. Padded shoe inserts or prescription orthotics also might help. Sometimes, pain medicines or cortisone shots are used to bring relief. If simpler treatments don't help, surgery may be needed.