Quick Facts on Big Toe Arthritis - Palm Beach Orthopaedic Institute

Hallux rigidus or big toe arthritis happens when the joint at the base of the big toe (hallux) stiffens (rigidus) severely limiting its movement. It is progressive arthritic condition that affects the toes motion. The big toe’s mobility gradually decreases until it has lost all range of movement.

How can I get big toe arthritis?

Leading causes of big toe arthritis includes joint damage resulting from normal wear and tear and structural foot deformities such as those with fallen arches, high or low arches. In some cases, people have a higher risk of developing big toe arthritis as a result of inheriting certain foot types.  People who actively engage in sports and do not wear appropriate shoe wear expose the toe joint to high levels of stress. It can also result from injury or caused by inflammatory diseases such as gout or arthritis.

  • Injury
  • Genetics
  • Poor foot mechanics (flat feet, high and low arches)
  • Wear and tear
  • Chronic inflammatory diseases (arthritis or gout)
  • Long first or short second metatarsal bone

A quick visit to the podiatrist could help determine if you are at high risk for developing big toe arthritis. Dr. John Schilero specializes in detecting big toe arthritis and other foot disorders.

Symptoms of Big Toe Arthritis

Symptoms of big toe arthritis vary according to the stage you are in. Below are signs that you might already be suffering from the foot condition:

  • Pain that come with foot movements such as walking and disappears during rest
  • Swelling, tenderness at the bottom of the big toe
  • Stiffness or limited movement in the big toe
  • Pain or discomfort in the big toe area when wearing high heels or shoes that place extra pressure in the area
  • Pain or stiffness when exposed to cold temperatures

Early diagnosis gives you the best chance of recovering fully from big toe arthritis and stopping it from progressing into something more severe. This makes visiting a podiatrist at the earliest sign of the foot condition essential. When bone spurs have developed or a noticeable deformity has already occurred, surgical intervention might be the only treatment option available.

At Palm Beach Orthopaedic Institute located in West Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and Wellington, we specialize in helping people suffering from foot disorders.  To schedule an appointment, call 561-694-7776 EXT. 2112.