Harvard Women's Health Watch

Sidestepping big-toe woes

Wearing high heels with pointed toes is a major cause of bunions.
Image: Thinkstock

For many women, bunions and rigidity are two of the most common—and painful—problems with the big toe. Both are easily treated.

Mother Goose may be wrong. It probably wasn't the little piggy, but the big piggy, who cried all the way home. Hallux (the medical name for the big toe) is more likely to be in pain than any of the other toes because it's involved in two of the most common foot ailments—arthritis and bunions—both of which can occur after years of going to market, often encased in an ill-fitting or inappropriate shoe.

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