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Hallux Varus

What is hallux varus?

Hallux varus is a condition of the big toe when it points away from the other toes. This is the opposite of a bunion deformity, when the big toe points towards the lesser toes.

What causes hallux varus?

The most common cause of hallux varus deformity is from a bunion surgery that results in an overcorrection. Other causes include congenital deformities, trauma to the big toe, an unstable big toe joint or issues resulting from tendon dysfunction.

What are the symptoms of hallux varus?

The most common symptom of hallux varus is pain caused by shoe wear pushing on the angulated big toe. Toenail issues may arise from pressure of the nail, which can lead to an ingrown toenail.

How is a hallux varus diagnosed?

Hallux varus is diagnosed by thorough history and physical examination. X-rays are typically ordered to assess for arthritis, previous trauma, and degree of deformity.

How is hallux varus treated?

Nonsurgical treatment

Conservative treatment for hallux varus can be successful and includes stretches, splinting and modifications to shoes.

Operative treatment

Operative treatment can often be necessary, especially in the setting of a previous bunion surgery. This often requires correcting soft tissue and bone alignment to straighten the toe, and sometimes fusing the big toe joint.