Big Toe Arthritis

Big Toe Arthritis (Hallux Rigidus Arthritis)

Big toe joint arthritis is the most common site of arthritis in the foot. Like arthritis in other parts of the body, it is a degenerative disease of the cartilage. Symptoms can include pain, swelling, reduced range of motion and stiffness. Big toe joint arthritis can be successfully treated and managed long-term with non-surgical and surgical methods.

Non-Surgical Options

  • Ice
  • Footwear Modification
  • Orthotics
  • Injections

Surgical Options

If non-surgical treatments are no longer effective for relieving pain, a surgical option could be the next step.


Cheilectomy is surgery to remove bone spurs and bone from your foot so your big toe has enough space to bend. During cheilectomy, your surgeon removes bone spurs to relieve pain and give your joint room to move. Cheilectomy can relieve big toe pain and inflexibility.


A big toe fusion is an operation for severe arthritis of the big toe that is painful and already stiff (hallux rigidus). It is a well-established surgical treatment and has been proven to be effective.