Arthritis of the Big Toe | Hallux Rigidus
What is Hallux Rigidus?
Hallux rigidus is the medical name for arthritis of the big toe. It literally means 'stiffening of the big toe'. It affects the joint base of your first toe called the metatarsophalangeal joint, or MTP joint, and is the most common site of arthritis in the foot.
The pain and stiffness of hallux rigidus leads to difficulty walking and bending the toe. It is a condition caused by the wear and tear of the lubricating cartilage that lines the joint. As the cartilage wears away, the bone becomes scarred and overgrows near the edges, resulting is bony spurs or 'osteophytes' that reduce the movement of the toe.
There are a number of effective treatments for hallux rigidus, including pain killers and special footwear or insoles to ease the pain. Surgery is also an option, which include operations such as cheilectomy or joint fusion.