- Swelling around the joint.
- A bump, like a bunion or callus that develops on the top of the foot.
- Stiffness in the great toe and an inability to bend it up or down.
- Arthrodesis: Advanced stages of hallux rigidus, when the joint damage is severe, are often treated by fusing the big toe (arthrodesis). In this procedure, the damaged cartilage is removed and the two bones are fixed together with screws and/or plates to allow for them to grow together. The main advantage of this procedure is that it is a permanent correction with elimination of the arthritis and pain. The major disadvantage is the restriction of movement of the big toe.
- Interpositional Arthroplasty: For the patient with moderate-to-severe hallux rigidus who is unwilling to accept the loss of motion at the big toe, an interpositional arthroplasty may be an option. This procedure consists of taking away some of the damaged bone and placing a piece of soft tissue from the foot, such as tendon or capsule, between the joint to allow for some motion. The operation is effective but not as reliable or predictable as a fusion.
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