Synergy Health Partners

Bunions and Hammertoes

Bunions and hammertoes are common foot deformities that result from shoes that don’t fit properly or muscle imbalances.

What are Bunions and Hammertoes?

If the joint that connects your big toe to your foot has a swollen, sore bump, you may have a foot deformity known as a bunion. With a bunion, the base of your big toe (metatarsophalangeal joint) gets larger and sticks out. Wearing any type of shoe may be painful since the joint flexes with every step you take. The bigger your bunion gets, the more it hurts to walk.

A hammertoe is a deformity of the second, third, or fourth toes. In this condition, the toe is bent at the middle joint, resembling a hammer. People with hammertoes may have corns or calluses on the top of the toe’s middle joint or tip. They may also feel pain in their toes or feet and have difficulty finding comfortable shoes.

Initially, both bunions and hammertoes can be corrected with simple measures, but if left untreated, they may require more advanced treatment, such as surgery.

What are the symptoms of Bunions and Hammertoes?


  • Red and tender skin, possibly leading to bursitis
  • Bumpy big toe angling towards or under the second toe
  • Thickened, painful skin on the bottom of the foot
  • Second toe forced out of alignment, possibly overlapping the third toe
  • Difficulty walking in severe cases
  • Chronic pain and arthritis (in severe cases)


  • Second, third, or fourth toes bent at the middle joint, resembling a hammer
  • Corns or calluses on the top of the middle joint or tip of the toe
  • Pain in the toes or feet
  • Difficulty finding comfortable shoes

What are the causes of Bunions and Hammertoes?

Over half of American women have bunions, a joint deformity often blamed on wearing tight, narrow shoes and high heels. Bunions may occur in families, but many are caused by wearing tight shoes. Nine out of ten bunions happen to women. Nine out of ten women wear shoes that are too small. Too tight shoes can also cause other disabling foot problems like corns, calluses, and hammertoes. Causes of hammertoes include:

  • Ill-fitting shoes: Shoes with narrow toe boxes or high heels squeeze toes, causing them to bend abnormally.
  • Muscle imbalance: Weakened or tight muscles can pull toes out of alignment.
  • Chronic toe bending: Over time, toes held in a bent position can stiffen due to tightened muscles and tendons.

Why choose
Synergy Health Partners?

Synergy Health Partners is Michigan’s sole integrated musculoskeletal care provider. We offer a comprehensive suite of services, including orthopedic urgent care, in-office treatments, ambulatory surgery centers, virtual consultations, and an in-house pharmacy. Our coordinated approach ensures seamless, personalized care for your musculoskeletal well-being.

Find a Doctor

Synergy Health Partners brings together doctors with specialized expertise in musculoskeletal care. Our physicians are affiliated with Michigan’s top hospitals and stay up-to-date on the latest technologies and treatments, both surgical and non-invasive, to provide patients with advanced, proven medical care.

Relieve Pain from Bunions and Hammertoes

Don’t let bunions or hammertoes keep you from living an active, pain-free life. Schedule an evaluation today to start your journey toward proper foot health and improved mobility.