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Bunion Diagnosis

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Mr Hip Guy, Nov 10, 2020.

  1. Mr Hip Guy

    Mr Hip Guy Peer Supporter

    I'm an endurance athlete (trail running, cycling, etc) that's had a long history of issues that I've since determined was TMS. I had hip (labral tear) surgery 2 years ago to "fix" an issue that only later was fixed through TMS therapy and I occasionally get new areas of pain that I am often able to address with the TMS mindset. As a runner doing a lot of miles every week I'm used to niggles and pains here and there but over the last couple of months I've had a nagging issue with my foot that won't go away.

    At first I was concerned it could be a stress fracture (or less of a concern - sesamoiditis) so I visited an orthopedist to get that at least ruled out through imaging.

    Instead I was surprised with a diagnosis of a bunion! I'm 49 so not exactly young but I wasn't expecting a bunion to be showing up at this relatively young age but there was no denying the xray image we reviewed in his office, clearly showing the big toe bending over towards the other rows of toes. He said it was "not bad at all" and really nothing to worry about at this point but I of course can't get that imaging out of my head.

    This is the classic TMS bugaboo, focusing on a structural abnormality and attributing pain to that.

    So I need a little help with this one. I know people have bunions, and much worse ones than mine, with no pain whatsoever but people also have surgeries to address bunions too.

    One thing in my favor, 10 days after my ortho visit, I completed a 100K trail run with almost no pain whatsoever out of my foot. So I have that "evidence" on my side, as well as the fact that often the foot doesn't hurt at all, or it will hurt at crazy odd times, like lounging in the bed. All classic TMS stuff.

    This site is helpful though and I've often been bolstered by others experiences either with similar injuries or otherwise, so just getting this post out there in case anyone can chime in. It's also therapeutic simply writing all this out. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

    Hi @Mr Hip Guy. Many moons ago, I went to a state registered podiatrist to have some verrucas removed. Whilst treating my verrucas the podiatrist pointed to the toes on each foot that are immediately next to my big toes - the top of each toe is bent at the top joint to one side (bent towards my other toes, away from my big toes)...And he said: "You want to watch those, they'll give you gyp [British word meaning 'pain'] when you get into your 30s! That bend in your toes is due to poor shoe choice, due shoes that are too tight". Thankfully, I was able to take no bloomin' notice of him because 1) I knew that I had always worn sensible well-fitting shoes, to include as a child (my feet were always measured properly) and 2) The shape of my feet and toes are the spitting image of my Dad's feet and toes (and my Dad had also always worn sensible shoes all of his life)...so the shape of my bent toes is in my genes. Fast forward 40 years and - although I have had pain and other symptoms all over my body - I have never had any pain in those particular toes (and my father likewise - and he's almost 93 years old). The so called experts can make erroneous assumptions and be totally wrong. Even if you've noticed that your big toe has changed shape over the years compared to your other big toe (which I presume hasn't given you any pain and probably wasn't X-rayed for comparison purposes) I'd say to just wear sensible, comfortable, well-fitting footwear and put it out of your mind...or choose to concentrate on the "nothing to worry about" -- and forget about the "at this time" part of what you were told. A 100k trail run with almost no pain in your big toe speaks volumes imo.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2020
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  3. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

    P.S. I think this video is good because it explains the dangers of how we think about less than perfect joints and pain and how people and health professionals tend to describe and talk about this too, i.e. using pessimistic expressions and (often untrue) descriptions that just serve to perpetuate what we, on this forum, call TMS:
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2020
  4. Mr Hip Guy

    Mr Hip Guy Peer Supporter

    That was excellent, thanks for sharing. I got several new tools for my toolbox out of Dr David Butler's video.

    And thanks for the earlier post, you are quite right about the structural visualization problems we all have...I know this already but I seem to continuously need reminders.
     
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  5. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

    You're welcome! Don't know if you already know, but David Butler works with a partner called Lorimer Moseley (they've collaborated on at least one book about pain) and imo Lorimer has also done some good videos on YouTube which might be of interest, to include this one which, if nothing else, made me laugh:


    Me too! Many of us need frequent reminders to help get through to our subconscious mind that we're not in danger and it can pack up giving us unnecessary pain.
     
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  6. TG957

    TG957 Beloved Grand Eagle

    I have had bunions for the past 35 years. Quite surprisingly - or not! - the bigger one is not painful at all unless I put on brand new shoes and it rubs against the shoe, but the smaller one gets painful every once in a while out of a blue. I treat it as TMS.
     
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  7. Mr Hip Guy

    Mr Hip Guy Peer Supporter

    Thank you both for your replies.

    The funny thing is I "get" TMS and have recognized it in order to get past several other "ailments" but it's so sneaky and tricky that it can still "get" me. Especially with how effective the "structural imagery" can be. I can't look at my feet now without seeing the "crookedness" of the big toe, to the point it looks downright deformed.

    I recall this same situation with my hip. After googling images of "torn labrum" I had that imagery in my head and it was a powerful stimulus to the whole problem.
     
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