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The Bunion in the Teenager

I received an email from Isabel (names have been changed to protect the . . . health information.  Google HIPPA) the other day.  Her granddaughter, Lucy, had foot surgery for it.  Her granddaughter is 14.

When a bunion starts occurring this early in life there appear a couple of warning signs:  1) The gradual deviation of the inside part of the foot and development of the bump.  2) Even before this, however, the parents can have an idea to look out for the bunion based on the mother or father’s genetic disposition.  In other words the prevalence of the deformity in the patient’s family (usually the mother’s).

So what?  You may ask.  “If my child is going to get a bunion she is going to get a bunion.”  Right?  If caught early enough (before age 10) there is a much less invasive procedure without extensive reconstruction, pain and a prolonged recovery time.

Unfortunately, in order to correct this very painful bunion, Lucy had to have a joint fused to stabilize the foot and not just have the bump removed.  It required screws and a 6-8 week total recovery time.

If your child has a juvenile bunion starting (this is what happened to Lucy) then surgery is inevitable.  The type of procedure depends on how quickly you can get your child in to see your podiatrist.