Dr. Brandon Nelson, A Board Certified Foot & Ankle Surgeon and Physician, Discuss Big Toe Pain

Dr. Brandon Nelson, A Board Certified Foot & Ankle Surgeon and Physician, Discuss Big Toe Pain

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The big toe or 1st metatarsal phalangeal joint is one of the major weight bearing joints in the foot.  It is utilized in the normal gait cycle and normal supports approximately 80% of the body weight with each step.  With the average person walking 110,000 miles in a lifetime this can be quite a challenge if you are experiencing toe pain.  There are a few major causes of toe pain and we will discuss a couple today, arthritis and bunions.

Arthritis of the big toe is caused from normal wear and tear of the joint or from a sustained injury.  This can result in losing cartilage in the joint and a person begins to experience pain and swelling.  The toe joint can often enlarge and every step can become painful.  An x-ray is extremely helpful in establishing a diagnosis and a treatment plan.  This is a common pathology of the 1st MTPJ that causes arthritis called Hallux Limitus.  This is a result of abnormal pressures in the joint and can progress with time.  There are quite a few options available to help this condition.

Bunions are another common reason a big toe can be painful.  With a bunion you will see the toe is deviated and often appears to have a large bump.  Most people will have a family history of bunions.  Bunions as well become larger with time and increasingly painful.  Again, an x-ray can be helpful for coming up with a treatment plan.  A large majority of bunions end up requiring surgery to fix.

If you are having big toe pain, I can help. Give us a call at 425-391-866 or make an appointment online today. 

Sincerely,

Dr Brandon Nelson

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