Big Toe Joint Conditions

Are you affected with pain in your big toe joint?

I mean on and off to constant pain in your big toe. And pain which is intense enough to:

  • slow you down?
  • limit your activities?
  • keep you apart from your family and friends?
  • reduce your shoe selection?
  • create additional knee, hip or back pain?

Know why foot pain often reverberates up to the spine?


Any type of foot pain will change your gait. Soon your knee, hip and back will have to compensate. To the point they get overloaded, inflamed and in pain! This why the sooner you consult to fix your foot problem, the better!

We have good news for you!

  1. There is no reason for you to let pain wreck your life any longer!

  2. No reason not to go back to the activities you used to.

  1. No reason to stay away from your family and friends anymore.

  2. We will help you to calm down your pain fast. And most often without surgery.

Know the 3 Most Common Big Toe Joint Pain Conditions?


  • Bunion: Big Toe Misalignment & Foot Enlargement Deformity

  • Hallux Limitus: Arthritis of the Big Toe Joint Limiting Motion

  • Sesamoiditis: Tendon Tear to Bone Fracture

Normal foot profile like this !


A normal forefoot width & profile is observed whenever the big toe remains:

                1- parallel with the lesser toes;     

                 2-in straight line with the long axis of the foot;

                 3-away from or in slight contact with the second toe.

Is this the foot profile of your dreams? Are you affected with a bunion? See how we can erase it!

Bunion: Big Toe Deviation and Joint Prominence

Abnormal forefoot width & profile of a bunion deformity where the big toe:     

1. deviates against the second toe;
2. is no more aligned with the rest of the foot and with the lesser toes;
3. pushes against and overrides the second toe.

Here the prominent big toe joint is showing a reddish and sore area due to constant rubbing against shoes.


Notice how enlarged is the forefoot due to grossly prominent big toe and pinky toe joints.


Here is a typical severe bunion deformity where the big toe:

1. underrides the second toe;
2. is way out of alignment with the rest of the foot;
3. pushes the second toe under the third one.

Bunion Case Story # 1 – before*.


This 40-year-old patient was experiencing pain at the side of her big toe joint…every time she was wearing any of her stylish, pointy, high-heeled shoes. No way she would wear casual or running shoes whenever pleading for or meeting with clients. Not to mention her self-esteem and self-confidence were taken down by the unaesthetic outline of the bunion deformity of her left foot. Are you in the same situation?


Bunion Case Story # 1 – Before and After Toe Alignment & Bump Removal*.

This patient was affected with a moderate bunion deformity eliciting on and off pain cycles. Her symptoms did subside noticeably with orthotics and prescription shoes worn exclusively on week-ends and after work hours.

Then she asked for a corrective bunion procedure. Her goal was to get back her original big toe alignment and her natural foot profile. She is now back in her stylish pointy high-heeled shoes…without any of the pain she used to get and with no more restriction in her shoe selection.

Note the superb alignment of her big toe with the forefoot and lesser toes. Some space now exists in between the 1st and second toes. Because her lesser toes have been permanently pushed toward the outside of her foot.

Is this the type of results you are looking for?

Bunion Case Story # 2 – Before and After*.

A minor case of bunion deformity where the bump on the side of the big toe joint is much more accentuated than the big toe misalignment. The postoperative foot profile is just beautiful.

Is it the type of results you are looking for?

Just make an appointment to see if you are a candidate to have a bunion correction procedure.

Hallux Limitus: Arthritis & Reduced Function of the Big Toe Joint

The boney bump on top of this big toe joint is a deformity that cannot be missed.


The underlying bone spur acts as a door stop. It limits the necessary range of motion you need as you walk. Then all overlying ankle, knee, hip and back joints will have to work harder and harder…to compensate for your limited range of motion in your arthritic big toe.

A normal joint space (left) is required for proper joint function and normal range of motion (ROM) of the big toe. A typical hallux limitus condition shows a much-reduced joint space on x-rays (right). It’s literally bone on bone! That’s why it’s so sensitive over time. That’s also why, motion is reduced!

Normal Range of Motion of a healthy joint with no spur and ample joint space.

Limited Range of Motion due to spur interference and to limited to no joint space.


Bone spurs on top of a big toe joint act as a door stop. Joint space reduction is also a heavily limiting factor. Progressive spurring and joint space reduction will soon take off half of the normal range of motion of your big toe. Gait compensation imposed by an abnormal big toe joint will affect your knee, hip and back!


Each time you overpronate, you over compress your big toe joint at each step you take. Therefore, it is important to support your arch and limit the load over your big toe joint. Custom-made orthotics is key to offload your arthritic big toe joint.


Shoes with a rigid sole from heel to toes and with a rocker or upward curve from the ball of the foot down to toes tend to limit the amount of flexion imposed on the big toe joint. No more bone against bone crushing on top of your ailing joint. This will significantly reduce pain intensity. And the rocker sole will compensate for your limited joint function. Then your knee, hip and back will not have to do extra work anymore.


Sandals with Rigid Rocker Soles – Hell to Toes.

Here is an example of sandals designed with rigid curved soles that will offload all toe joints and reduce symptoms within the foot, knee, hip and back. Over time, foot pain subsides as the joint heals. You will be noticed when it’s time to progressively return to normal shoe gears.


Here is a very effective way to limit crushing in between bone spurs at the dorsal aspect of a big toe joint. Replacing flimsy insoles with custom-fit and rigid carbon fiber plates. This simple device has helped many of our patients to stop their big toe pain real fast!

In certain cases, we perform joint procedures – as a last resort option. We remove the spurs and restore additional joint space. The goal is to give you more range of motion and to remove the pain in your previously overloaded big toe, knee, hip and back joints.



Tiny sesamoid bones are located within the tendons that slide along either side of the bottom of the big toe joint. They are the size of a kernel of corn. But they receive the totality of our body weight at the end of every step we take!

Sesamoiditis describes pain, inflammation, partial tear or fracture of our sesamoid bones and tendons.


The two major causes of sesamoiditis are:

  • chronic overload from long-standing overpronation;
  • sudden overextension injury during sport activities.

Treatments for Big Toe Joint Pain Conditions

Bunions, Hallux Limitus and Sesamoiditis are most often treated conservatively using a combination of:

  • Custom-made orthotics to restore proper load distribution;
  • Prescription shoes, stylish or orthopedic, to supplement the effects of your orthotics;
  • A Series of Laser Pain Treatments for a faster and better repair of your ailing joint;
  • Rigid carbon fiber insoles to better offload your sore joint.


Very few patients will need or will request a specific surgical procedure to be performed. At the time of your examination, we will evaluate your foot condition. Then we will set you up with a treatment plan to meet your specific needs and objectives.


Be sure we keep in mind your success always precedes our success!