Hallux Rigidus (Stiff Big Toe)
With the Right Information, You Can Make the Best Decisions
About Your Foot and Ankle Health
At Capital District Podiatry, we believe that having the right information will help our patients make the best decisions about their foot and ankle health. That is why we are dedicated to providing you with an extensive resource on our website full of a wide array of topics on foot and ankle injuries, conditions, prevention and treatments.
This information is intended for you to learn about your symptoms, what may have lead to your injury and what treatment options we can provide for you. This patient education library is reliable, trustworthy and valuable information so please use it anytime you have a concern about your foot and ankle health.
Preventative education can keep you free from many of the common foot and ankle problems that affect people today. Accidents do happen and the type of care and how fast you get it will make the difference in how quickly you get back to your life without foot pain. Some of the common conditions diagnosed and treated by Dr. Pandya and our excellent staff include:
- Ingrown toenails
- Fungal nails
- Fungal infections
- Corns and calluses
- Cracks and sores
Your overall health affects your feet and many underlying conditions can cause damage to your feet first. It is important if you have a medical condition such as poor circulation, diabetes or arthritis that you not only stay informed of risk factors and symptoms to be aware of but that you catch problems early and seek appropriate treatment promptly.
We encourage you to use our patient education resources to understand any health conditions you may face and to make an appointment at any time. Call our podiatric office directly at (518) 273-0053 or request an appointment online.
As an extra resource for you, Dr. Pandya has written two books full of valuable information that you can receive at no cost. To have your free copy sent to you today, simply click on the book images of Tiptoe Your Way to Happy Feet and Stop Heel Pain found on our homepage.
An unmovable big toe, known as Hallux Rigidus, is the most common form of arthritis in the foot.
Hallux Rigidus occurs as a result of wear-and-tear injuries, which wear down the articular cartilage, causing raw bone ends to rub together. A bone spur, or overgrowth, may develop on the top of the bone. This overgrowth can prevent the toe from bending as much as it needs to when you walk. The resulting stiff big toe can make walking painful and difficult.
- A bump, like a bunion or callus, that develops on the top of the foot.
- Pain in the joint when active, especially as you push-off on the toes when you walk.
- Stiffness in the big toe and an inability to bend it up or down.
- Swelling around the joint.
Pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications are often prescribed to reduce swelling and ease the pain. Note: Please consult your physician before taking any medications. Applying ice packs or soaking the foot in contrast baths (alternating cold and hot water) may also help reduce inflammation and control symptoms for a short period of time.
A stiff-soled shoe with a rocker or roller bottom design and possibly a steel shank or metal brace in the sole can help alleviate the symptoms. These types of shoes add greater support when walking and reduce the amount of bend in the big toe.
When damage is more severe, a surgical procedure may be performed to remove the bone spurs, as well as a portion of the foot bone, and allow the toe more room to bend.