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Understanding Hallux Rigidus: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

Jul 21, 2023 | Foot Conditions, Hallux Rigidus

Hallux rigidus is a condition that affects the big toe joint, causing stiffness, pain, and limited range of motion. Diagnosis is usually made through a physical exam and imaging tests such as X-rays.

Conservative treatment options for hallux rigidus include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications and orthotics with an extension to limit the range of motion of the big toe joint. In some cases, corticosteroid injections may also be used to reduce inflammation and pain. However, this is not ideal as the steroid will eventually cause further damage to the cartilage of the joint and delay surgery for 3 months. Injections for hallux rigidus are an absolute last resort in my opinion.

Surgical treatment options for hallux rigidus include cheilectomy, in which the bone spur or excess bone is removed, and arthrodesis, in which the joint is fused together to create a stable, pain-free toe.

It is important to consult with a medical professional to determine the best course of treatment for your individual case of hallux rigidus. With proper care and treatment, people with hallux rigidus can manage their symptoms and continue to lead a fulfilling, active lifestyle.

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About Dr. Salvatore Meleca, DPM

Salvatore Meleca, DPM is a highly respected foot and ankle surgeon with extensive training and experience in podiatric medicine. He completed his residency at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, Florida, where he was mentored by Dr. Ettore Vulcano, a world-renowned orthopedic foot and ankle surgeon. Under the directorship of Dr. Jacob Silverstone, Dr. Meleca completed a 3 year surgical residency, performing and participating in various specialty surgeries such as orthopedics, plastics, vascular and more. His greatest qualities that are brought to his foot and ankle care are his sophisticated approach to conservative treatments, his careful surgical procedural selection, and his capabilities in performing minimally invasive technique surgeries.

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