Q & A: Running with Bunions


One thing we know for sure about bunions: once you get them, they’re here to stay. They’re simply not going away by themselves. If you’re a runner - or you’re thinking about starting a running regimen - and you’ve got a bunion, here are some questions you might want to discuss with the podiatrists at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center in Monmouth County, New Jersey. 

Q: Did running cause my bunion?

A:  People are generally predisposed to get bunions because of the way their foot is structured. If your mom or dad has bunions, you might have them, too. Bunions sometimes develop as a result of injury or as an accompaniment to arthritis. The pounding of running can speed up the development of bunions, but isn’t necessarily the actual cause. 

Q: Will I make my bunion worse by running?

A:  Running can definitely aggravate a bunion. Repetitive stress to the forefront and toe area - unavoidable while running - can make a bunion feel worse. So can the constant friction of the bunion against the side of your shoe.

Q: Can I run with a bunion?

A:  Bunions don’t have to be a game stopper. To the extent that your bunion doesn’t cause you pain, go ahead and run. 

Q: What should I do if my bunion hurts while I’m running?

A:  First order of business: make an appointment with one of our board-certified podiatrists, Samantha Boyd, DPM; Hal Ornstein, DPM; Joseph Saka, DPM; or Katy Statler, DPM. Let us take a full medical history, examine your foot, and take x-rays. All of these will help us determine how bad your bunion is and offer the best treatment for you, which may include

  • a different kind of running shoe
  • orthotic inserts or special pads to take pressure off the bunion
  • injection therapy with corticosteroids
  • physical therapy which we offer right here at our office
  • surgical correction of the misaligned bone

Your bunion isn’t going away, but if you ignore it, it’s most likely going to get worse. We have many approaches to helping you slow down the progression of bunions and keep you running longer. Give us a call at our office in Howell: (732) 905-1110 or click here to make an appointment online.