Big Toe Pain


Bunions are one of the most common and immediately obvious foot problems affecting the big toe joint, and sometimes the 5th toe joint on the other side of the foot. There is usually a strong family history of bunions which relates to the inherited shape of the bones of the foot and how they function. The bunion develops as part of a foot that is rolled in at the ankle and is only exacerbated by tight footwear which causes the overlying tissue to become inflamed.

The underlying joint is affected by a form of osteo-arthritis, with reduction in range of motion and this can cause pain on walking. The joint complex is complicated and a full assessment by a podiatrist can guide you on the best treatment available for the presenting condition of the joint. Surgery for bunions is a possible treatment option the podiatrist can discuss with you. However a range of conservative treatments are usually tried first.


Gout is one of the most painful and destructive forms of arthritis. It is a problem of metabolising purines found in certain foods, and uric acid crystals settle in cool joints. The gouty big toe requires medical intervention, however pressure relief and footwear advice can be offered by a podiatrist for long term relief.

In-grown toenails

One of the most common conditions Podiatrists are consulted about are ingrown or painful toenails. Not all painful toenails are ingrown; the pain can be caused by a thick or badly shaped nail or simply by shoes that are too tight. An ingrown toenail is a nail that has pierced the skin causing pain, inflammation and sometimes infection. The Podiatrist will first try to treat the toenail with conservative treatment and footwear advice; this is usually all that is required.

For more information see here: Ingrown Toe Nail Surgery