Ways & How

How to treat arthritis in big toe

How to treat arthritis in big toe

How to treat arthritis in big toe, or the so-called Hallux rigidus in the scientific sense, is the focus of this article. Do you know that this condition can be inherited? People above 30 years of age but less than 60 can experience Hallux rigidus especially those who have biomechanical abnormalities in their bloodline. Its causes can be anything from accidental bumps to gout. The bad thing is, the condition is progressing to a more damaging state. It will, of course, start from simple pains or perhaps some stiffness. Soon you will have many discomforts while making motions that involve the big toe. Walking and running plus other activities of that sort will never be the same again. As time goes by and you’ve been transferring your body weight to other parts so as not to strain the affected big toe too severely, you will just notice that the toe becomes numb but still hurts even when at rest. Back pain will also be evident by this time. Your visit to the doctor may lead you to the following treatments:

  1. Halux rigidus is too difficult to diagnose visually, but laboratory tests and an x-ray will be done to determine the extent of the toe damage and the conditions associated with it.

    You will be advised to go through alternative measures without surgery first to see if the condition gets better. Bunion guard padding, orthotic shoe inserts, and tailor-made shoes with stiff soles plus a wide toe box may be recommended.

  2. You may be told to add stretching your calf and icing the sore toe. This is to improve blood circulation in the affected areas to prevent toe stiffness. There must be some relief observed after few days but that can be temporary.

  3. If your big toe is very much inflamed, a Cortisone shot may be given to you. It is a strong anti-inflammatory formula that has proven to provide immediate relief to these kinds of syndromes.

  4. Other anti-inflammatory drugs may also be prescribed for seven to ten days’ continuous medication such as Ibuprofen. Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate also aid the repair and resistance of damaged cartilage. You will surely need bigger shoes to avoid stressing your big toe.

  5. Surgery is the answer in the event that none of the conservative methods above solves the problem in the long run. Cheilectomy and joint fusion are the two most popular surgical procedures. Cheilectomy is the removal of bone spurs to avoid friction in the joints thus minimizing pain.

  6. Joint fusion is highly recommended by doctors. An incision is performed in the joint and the surfaces are taken out. A metal screw or pin will be in place to substitute for the removed surfaces. The toe will be pointed slightly upward to be able to walk comfortably. The fusion will not be fragile anymore after around three months or less recovery.

These are just some alternatives on how to treat arthritis in a big toe. If you plan to go for any of the surgeries, prepare to wear a cast for around two weeks and using crutches. Painkillers can help you bear the pain. The important thing is, after this ordeal, there will never be another irritating pain to your big toe again. Just be patient with the healing period. Have a total rest for the first four days after the surgery. Do not wear shoes or play sports prematurely. You’ll be a new person after approximately six weeks.


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