Hallux valgus what is halus valgus and how to treat it

The curvature may be congenital or acquired. In the first case, the problem is already visible in the first month of the child’s life.

The cause of the appearance of congenital valgus feet in children is intrauterine disorders of the formation of the foot.

Causes of acquired flat-valgus deformity of the foot:

  • deviations in the development of the musculoskeletal system;
  • muscle hypotonia;
  • underdevelopment of the tendon-ligamentous apparatus;
  • concomitant diseases, for example, rickets, polyneuropathy, cerebral palsy, myodystrophy, poliomyelitis, osteomyelitis, hip dysplasia, osteoporosis;
  • injuries of ligaments, tendons, muscles, bones;
  • genetic predisposition.

Hallux valgus may develop amid obesity and endocrine diseases. In adults, the cause of foot curvature is professional activity, which is associated with constant mechanical stress on the joints.

Arthritis, gout, and deforming osteoarthritis contribute to the occurrence of bumps on the leg. Toe curvature can occur due to wearing tight high-heeled shoes. In addition to joint deformation, corns and corns appear.

Hallux valgus deformation of the legs is manifested by the fact that part of the lower leg is shifted inward, that is, the lower limbs resemble the letter “x”. In this case, a distance of up to 5 cm arises between the ankles, and the knees are tightly pressed against each other.

More often, valgus curvature of the legs occurs in childhood, when parents put the baby on their feet ahead of schedule. In addition to this type of deformation, other varieties may occur.

Shishkevich Vladimir, orthopedic and traumatologistShishkevich Vladimir, orthopedic and traumatologist, project editor-in-chief ExpertNews.

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Ankle joint

Hallux valgus deformity leads to the development of flat-valgus curvature. In this form, the heel deviates outward, and the foot falls inward.

Flatfoot is also called flat valgus deformity. This is the most common type of foot deformity in a child. In this case, the foot deviates from its axis with a subsequent decrease in its arches.

40-80% of children under the age of 5 years with abnormalities in the development of the feet have flat valgus installation of the feet.

Deviation of the foot to the side of its axis can be seen in the baby upon reaching 1 year. The crumb while walking uses only the inner surface of the foot. Already at this age, you must consult a doctor.

Symptoms of a flat-valgus foot in a child:

  • the baby’s gait becomes awkward;
  • shuffling is heard while walking;
  • pain occurs in the lower leg;
  • the baby quickly gets tired, cannot stay on its feet for a long time.

Hallux valgus deformity in children is of four degrees. At stages 1 and 2, it is much easier to eliminate the curvature of the limbs.

Big toe

The most common hallux valgus is found in women after the age of 30. This problem is also called a bump on the leg. It is a consequence of transverse flat feet, in which there is a deviation of the first toe.

As the natural location of the big toe changes, this leads to a shift towards the other fingers.

The mechanism of deformation development is as follows:

  1. Impaired functioning of ligaments, tendons and muscles.
  2. The appearance of changes in the bones and joints.
  3. The increase in the angle of deviation of the first finger.
  4. The appearance of a lump in the metatarsophalangeal joint.
  5. Outward displacement of the first finger, followed by bending the rest and fixing them in the wrong position.

There are several degrees of deformation, the deflection angle can be up to 15˚, from 15 to 20˚, from 20 to 30˚ and more than 30˚.


The curvature of the legs leads to changes in the knee joints, and then to flat-valgus flatfoot. Hallux valgus is accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • bump in the affected joint, swelling and redness may appear;
  • change in the location and shape of the fingers (hammer curvature);
  • pain with prolonged standing on the legs;
  • fatigue of limbs.

The bone will increase as the disease progresses, problems arise with the selection of shoes.

Which doctor treats hallux valgus?

If there is a pathology in a child, you need to contact a pediatric orthopedist. Sometimes a neurologist consultation is required. An adult patient should consult an orthopedist.


The orthopedist will examine the foot and fingers. To make an accurate diagnosis and identify the cause of the pathology, the patient needs to undergo computer examination methods.

Diagnostics looks like this:

  • radiography (take a picture in 3 projections);
  • plantography;
  • podonometry;
  • Ultrasound of the joints.


Only the initial stage of hallux valgus can be treated conservatively. In advanced cases can not do without surgery.

In adults

A set of treatment procedures to combat flat feet includes wearing orthopedic shoes, the use of night tires, insoles and gaskets between the fingers. Be sure to exercise therapy and physiotherapy.

To reduce the inflammatory process, hormonal drugs are used that are injected into the joint space. This remedy is Diprospan and Hydrocortisone.

Removing halus valgus is possible in various ways. There are more than 100 operational techniques. The most common are osteotomy (removal of a part of the phalanx of the finger or bone), restoration of ligaments, exostectomy (excision of a part of the head of the metatarsal bone), implant placement, transplantation or removal of tendons.


To cure the disease, you need an integrated approach:

  • Exercise therapy;
  • massage;
  • foot baths;
  • swimming;
  • physiotherapeutic procedures – paraffin therapy, mud applications, electrophoresis, magnetotherapy, muscle electrical stimulation, IRT.

How to treat congenital deformity? Fixation of the foot with plaster casts will be required. Be sure to wear only special orthopedic shoes.

Only in 7% of cases it is not possible to correct the curvature by the conservative method, then doctors resort to surgical intervention.


The treatment of hallux valgus deformity of the foot must be done on time. With 3 and 4 degrees of the disease, the following complications develop:

  • damage to the skin of the foot in the form of corns and calluses, which deliver pain;
  • nail ingrowth;
  • limb shortening;
  • arthrosis and osteochondrosis of the knee and ankle joints;
  • scoliosis, pelvic deformity.

Complications arise due to the uneven load on different parts of the foot. If you do not pay attention to flat feet, then chronic bursitis and Deutchlender’s disease develops.


The main preventive measure is an examination by an orthopedic surgeon. To prevent the onset of the disease, you must follow these recommendations:

  • wear comfortable shoes, preferably orthopedic, it should be without narrow socks, stilettos (heels not higher than 7 cm);
  • observe the regime of work and rest, if the work is associated with prolonged stay on the legs;
  • use orthopedic insoles.

You need to monitor the health of the musculoskeletal system since childhood. The child can not be put on his feet before the due date, be sure to give vitamin D for the prevention of bone disease.

The prognosis for recovery is favorable only in case of timely treatment. Then it is possible to restore the appearance and normal functioning of the joints of the foot. If complications appear, then the pain may persist even after surgery.

Shishkevich Vladimir

Shishkevich Vladimir, orthopedic and traumatologist, project editor-in-chief ExpertNews. It specializes in the treatment of diseases in orthopedic, traumatological, vertebrological profiles