Big Toe Joint Pain

Hallux limitus is a condition in which the joint that moves the big toe becomes stiff and possibly painful from arthritic changes. The pain usually is with lifting the toe or stretching the toe toward the leg. The pain may occur with walking, with jumping or over time if the joint is damaged, at rest. The pain may also center under the ball of the foot. Often a callus will form under the toe and may become painful or create a wound. Sometimes, there is a bony painful protrusion on the top of the joint.

To treat hallux limitus, your podiatrist may recommend:

  • Wearing different shoes: high heels can place more pressure on the joint and cause two bones to grind on one another
  • Shoe inserts or orthotics with modifications to either increase or decrease the motion at that joint
  • Steroid injections which tend to be temporary pain relievers but can reduce inflammation
  • Solid sole shoes, possibly with a curved sole to reduce bending of that joint
  • Topical or oral pain medication
  • Surgery to remove bony outgrowths
  • Surgery to fuse the joint

Hallux limitus is a condition that is often treated successfully with conservative care. Your doctor may want to test your joints and muscles to determine the best supportive orthotics for you so plan for a bit of a longer visit. Sometimes excellent shoes may be enough to prevent most pain associated with the joint.

Please visit our website for more information or call 614-885-3338 (FEET) to schedule an appointment with us at our Columbus, Gahanna or Dublin, OH office.