Not Sure if you Have a Bunion? Self Assess Before Seeking Bunion Treatment

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The Manchester scale, once used only by physicians to identify a bunion’s severity, is now available to patients. It provides an easy way to identify the degree to which one may have bunions prior to seeking bunion treatment or medical advice.

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The grading of hallux valgus. The Manchester Scale. Garrow AP

We are pleased the Manchester scale is a reliable way to self-assess the severity of one’s toe deformity because early prevention can reduce bunion pain and help avoid bunion surgery.

Alpha Orthotics Corp., US distributor for Bunion Aid®, an award-winning bunion splint, makes available a simple clinical screening tool, the Manchester scale, for self-assessing the severity of Hallux valgus (bunions). It provides an easy way to identify the degree to which one may have bunions prior to seeking bunion treatment or medical advice. Until recently, only physicians used the Manchester scale to measure the medial deviation of the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint with respect to the big toe. However, according to a recent study, the accuracy of patients using the scale to self-assess bunion severity is acceptable.

The Manchester scale includes standardized photographs of feet with four grades of Hallux valgus (none, mild, moderate, and severe). The objectives of the study were to measure the re-test reliability and validity of using this simple clinical screening tool in self-assessment of Hallux valgus. The study demonstrated a strong association between participants (patients) and examiners (physicians) using the Manchester scale to document the presence and severity of Hallux valgus.

According to Hylton B Menz, one of the authors of the study, “The key advantages of the Manchester scale are that the photographs represent real cases of Hallux valgus selected by a consensus panel of podiatrists to represent the full spectrum of the deformity.”

As a result of this study, Alpha Orthotics Corp provides this tool as well as recommended bunion treatments. The enlarged, life-sized foot images (right and left feet) are easy to download and print directly from the Alpha Orthotics web site. There are four measurements: No deformity=0, Mild deformity=1, Moderate deformity=2, and Advanced deformity=4. Rather than having to visit a doctor to assess the severity of a bunion, this self-assessment process will help individuals know whether to wear a bunion splint or to further seek professional medical advice.

“We are pleased to see this study validate the use of the Manchester scale as a reliable way to self-assess the severity of one’s toe deformity,” proclaimed Gaby Federal, President Alpha Orthotics, “because early prevention of a bunion can reduce bunion pain and help avoid bunion surgery. The re-test reliability is encouraging, as well, so the scale can be used to measure the progress of bunion treatment over time.”

The Manchester scale’s standardized foot images are easily accessible from Alpha Orthotics by clicking Bunion Self Treatment Guide. Bunion Aid, a flexible hinged bunion splint, and the Medial Mid-foot Brace, an arch support brace, are available through Alpha Orthotics.com and other online retailers and medical professionals.

About Alpha Orthotics
Alpha Orthotics Corp. (http://www.alphaorthotics.com) is a wholly owned subsidiary of German Hallufix Corporation. Alpha Orthotics markets and sells patented, German-engineered non-invasive orthotic products directly to consumers and to the medical community. Alpha Orthotics is committed to informing people about Hallux valgus by providing information about foot health and preventive treatments.

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Marianne Mullins
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