For years, doctors have noted a connection between rheumatoid arthritis and the development of bunions. They have also noticed that a family history of this form of arthritis often causes it to occur in later generations. But does this mean a person is doomed to bunions as well? And is surgery inevitable?
Genetics Influence Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is a serious problem that causes serious pain and even physical deformations in the body. It is a condition that is typically passed on from generation-to-generation due to various genetic pre-dispositions, including certain types of genetic code that may be passed on from parents to their children.
For example, if the HLA-shared epitope gets passed down to the next generation, that person is five-times more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis. Does this connection mean that a person has an increased chance of developing serious bunions?
As A Result, Bunions Can Occur
Bunions are a somewhat mysterious condition that often occurs in people who have rheumatoid arthritis. Bunions often cause the large big toe to push up over the second toe and create painful calluses and bumps along the foot. As a result, it can be difficult to wear shoes or even walk if they get severe enough. While not everyone with rheumatoid arthritis develops these health problems, many do.
Anyone with a family history of bunions and rheumatoid arthritis, therefore, needs to be aware of the treatment methods. Again, a family history does not make either of these problems unavoidable, but it does increase the risk of both occurring.
Is Surgery Unavoidable?
Those who are worried about developing bunions due to a family history of rheumatoid arthritis need to understand that surgery isn't inevitable. Typically, a developing bunion can be treated by wearing looser shoes, icing the painful area, taking medication, or even receiving cortisone shots. These treatment methods are designed to decrease the pain of the problem and avoid serious surgery.
Unfortunately, surgery may end up being inevitable anyways. If a bunion does develop and starts getting very large, it may be necessary to correct the problem before it becomes too severe. Surgery helps keep a bunion from dangerously affecting a person's stride and keeping them in great shape for years to come.
Thankfully, not everyone who has a family history of rheumatoid arthritis will develop bunions. Bunions, while painful, are not an unavoidable fate. However, they can be easily treated if proper management methods are taken immediately.
Contact a health center that deals with bunion surgeries for more information and assistance.