Hallux Rigidus

Hallux Rigidus

Hallux Rigidus services offered in Corona and Ontario, CA

Do you have a stiff and painful big toe? It could be hallux rigidus, a condition that podiatry specialists Norris Morrison, DPM, Lateef Lawal, DPM, and Brian Constantine, DPM, regularly treat in the Advanced Care Foot and Ankle offices in Corona and Ontario, California. Hallux rigidus can make it hard to walk, but with early treatment, you can avoid progression and get back to activities quickly. Book your appointment online or call the nearest office for personalized help now.

What is hallux rigidus?

Hallux rigidus is a condition causing inflammation, pain, and stiffness within the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint at the base of your big toe. While bunions and hallux rigidus affect the same joint, they’re two separate conditions. 

Hallux rigidus has several possible causes, but the most common include genetics, toe injuries, joint overuse like frequent squatting, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Sometimes a couple of these factors contribute to the development of hallux rigidus. 

What are the symptoms of hallux rigidus?

Hallux rigidus causes issues including: 

  • Big toe pain, which is most severe when walking or running
  • Big toe stiffness
  • MTP joint swelling
  • Discomfort wearing shoes
  • Callus on the MTP joint

The symptoms of a bunion and hallux rigidus are quite similar, but there’s a clear visual difference. A bunion bump is on the side of the MTP joint, but with hallux rigidus, it’s on top of it. 

If you don’t treat hallux rigidus in its early stages, it may grow worse. You could develop bone spurs, adding to the pain, and it may become difficult to walk.

How is hallux rigidus diagnosed?

The Advanced Care Foot and Ankle team performs a hands-on exam to test toe joint movement and function. For example, they’ll likely move your toe up and down to determine how stiff the MTP joint is. Although they can often diagnose hallux rigidus visually, the team commonly performs X-rays to check for problems like bone spurs and arthritis damage as well. 

How is hallux rigidus treated?

The Advanced Care Foot and Ankle team provides personalized hallux rigidus treatment. They  discuss your symptoms in detail to fully grasp how you feel and what you need to feel better. 

In many cases, hallux rigidus treatment is a combination of symptom easement measures and preventive tactics. For example, you might need physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medication, and corticosteroid injections to minimize pain and improve joint movement. 

In addition, the team often recommends wearing supportive shoes, orthotics, and other simple measures to help you prevent further joint damage.

If conservative measures don’t relieve your hallux rigidus symptoms, you could be a good candidate for surgery to realign the MTP joint. Fortunately, advanced surgical techniques lead to easier and quicker recoveries, often with a fast return to walking. 

Click on the provided link or call the Advanced Care Foot and Ankle office to arrange your appointment today.