Autumn is a painful time of year for many South Jersey women. As they transition from open-toed sandals to closed-in boots and shoes, foot and ankle surgeon Julaine Miller, DPM, says she notices more women seeking relief for painful bunions. Dr. Miller has offices in SewellGlassboroCherry HillMarlton, Woodbury and Mt. Holly. She says this trend plays out in the examining rooms of many foot and ankle surgeons every autumn.

“Some of my female bunion patients are in agony,” says Dr. Miller. “They describe a constant, throbbing pain, even when they take their shoes off.” While the changing weather brings more bunion patients into her office, Dr. Miller says some women inquire about surgery in the fall because they’re less busy than in summer months. Many are also closer to meeting their insurance deductibles. Dr. Miller emphasizes that surgery is a last-resort treatment for women with painful bunions.

“For many women, simple changes like wearing shoes with wider toe boxes can significantly reduce bunion pain,” she says. “Custom shoe inserts, gel- or foam-filled padding and anti-inflammatory medications may also provide pain relief.” When the pain of a bunion interferes with a woman’s daily activities, it’s time to discuss surgical options.

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