Arthritis (Hallux Rigidus)

This condition is very common and results in limited motion, swelling and pain around the great toe joint.

Sometimes confused with bunions, this condition is very common. It results in limited motion, swelling and pain around the great toe joint. Symptoms generally worsen with time and often the bone changes (development of spurs around the joint) cause discomfit in shoes. As the condition worsens, the cartilage inside the joint becomes more degraded and worn away. Once gone, cartilage cannot be replaced. At its worst, the condition results in severe and painful arthritic damage which significantly affects quality of life.

The cause is not fully understood although it is believed to be most commonly the result of an injury to the joint which may have been relatively minor and may have occurred many years ago. Some foot types (shape, length and position of bones) may also be a factor.

Treatments

Procedures for hallux rigidus include joint repair / salvage and joint fusion.

As an alternative to fusion (where the big toe joint is bolted so it will not move), at FASA we perform a specialized joint resurfacing procedure where possible for hallux rigidus. This preserves movement at the big toe joint.

The joint salvage options can be converted to a fusion procedure at a subsequent operation in the unlikely event that problems recur or persist.

arthritis

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