Bunionette (Tailor’s Bunion)

While the name “bunionette” might sound cute, the condition is not. Similar to a bunion, a bunionette – also called a tailor’s bunion – is a prominence of the fifth metatarsal bone at the base of the little toe. This condition was named after tailors who, centuries ago, used to sit for long periods of time cross-legged as they worked. The outside of their foot would constantly rub against the ground and be put under pressure as they leaned in, which caused bunionettes.

This painful prominence occurs at the head of the metatarsal bone (one of five long bones that run the length of the foot) where it meets the toe. As the head is displaced and new bone forms, the forefront of the foot starts widening and the bones protrude outward. Tailor’s bunions can sometimes be a bony spur on the side of the metatarsal head. Either way, it makes wearing shoes painful and difficult.

Symptoms of a Bunionette

Symptoms include redness, swelling, pain and the tell-tale protrusion outward at the base of the little toe. In advanced cases, the little toe will actually begin to point inward toward the other toes.

Risk Factors For a Bunionette

Tailor’s bunions can be inherited or they can be caused by consistently wearing narrow shoes that rub and create pressure on the bones.  Not surprisingly, about nine out of 10 patients who develop bunionettes are women, and the condition is rare in non-Western countries. We love our pointy-toed shoes, don’t we, girls?

Treatment Options

For patients with a tailor’s bunion, we start with the most conservative treatments first to relieve pain and slow progression of the deformity. This will include recommendations on proper shoes, padding, and anti-inflammatory medications. We might also recommend icing to reduce the inflammation, corticosteroid injections, and orthotics that will eliminate the rubbing and support the foot.

In more advanced cases, surgery might be necessary to relieve the pain and prevent further deformity.

If you are experiencing foot pain, call our office or make an online appointment


Staff was extremely friendly and professional. They took us back immediately and no waiting for doctor to come in. Dr Settles-Carter was amazing with my little girl. She took her time and explained every detail to my daughter. As we were leaving my little girl said Dr Settles-Carter was the best doctor ever. Coming from a 10yr old.

Bert King

It took some work, and patience, but my feet are much better now. Dr. Freels worked with me to find exercises, and more importantly, the right shoe to wear. So nice not to dread going into work, for the pain of simply walking. Despite what another review here says, they've never tried to sell me any shoes there, have always left the choice up to me.

Robert Griffith

The staff was very courteous. However, the care provided by Dr. Carter and the staff in the back was exceptional! I finally had answers for my health concerns and issues and a course or plan of treatment including the costs of the services they provide. I especially liked the hours of operation...I can see a doctor for the treatment I need without having to use my personal and sick days! Love the flexibility. Lastly, the ambiance esthetics were relaxing and beautiful.

Bonnie Ogle Taylor

The entire staff at Lexington Podiatry was very welcoming and friendly. Jill went out of her way to make sure my daughter was taken care of. We appreciate being seen so quickly (it would have taken weeks to have seen an orthopedist for her foot injury). Now, she is on the road to recovery! Great office, thanks everyone!

Team Wade 24

Had a great experience! Everyone was very nice, it was clean, the doctor took time to listen to me. She showed me my x-rays and explained them to me. I would recommend them to family and friends.

Heather Purvis

Accepted Insurance Providers

There may be providers, plans and coverage not included on this list. We will help you with navigating the options for coverage and costs. We also accept HSA, Flex accounts, Care Credit and prompt pay pricing for treatment at the clinic and surgical procedures. We do not accept Medicaid plans at this time. Visit our New Patient page for more details.