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Detect and treat Hallux valgus symptoms

from UXGO
28 August 2018, 9:19 a.m.


You may be sitting in front of your PC looking for "Hallux valgus symptoms". Why? Sure, because your foot hurts! Hallux valgus, or ball toe, is one of the most common foot malpositions. Women are usually more often affected due to their weak connective tissue. In this article, we want to provide you with all you need to know about the Hallux valgus symptoms. Of course, this article does not replace a medical diagnosis.

Hallux valgus symptoms are individual and differently pronounced - sometimes only one foot is affected, sometimes both. Pain can be unbearable, but can also occur rarely and there are completely pain-free courses of Hallux valgus. The malposition of the toes can be strong and weak. Symptomatic is always a visible change in the big toe. This is usually accompanied by swelling and pressure pains, but does not have to be the case.

Show me your feet, show me your shoe...

With the right shoe some hallux valgus symptoms will be minimized - the foot can spread comfortably in the shoe. Nowadays Hallux shoes usually look good, so nothing stands in the way of a fashionable, fresh appearance - Chapeau! Insoles, bandages and other orthopaedic aids from the medical supply store can passively reduce hallux valgus symptoms and be worn in some hallux shoes. Cooling pads, compresses or anti-inflammatory creams rarely bring long-term success.


In general, it can even be said that pain in hallux valgus is caused by the overloading of surrounding structures, which can become inflamed and wear out as a result. The hallux valgus in itself is not necessarily painful.

Inner and outer hallux valgus symptoms are mutually dependent, because the visible shift initiates internal processes and promotes the development of a painful bursa inflammation, for example.

Visible hallux valgus Symptoms:

  • Large toe changes position and moves towards the side toe
  • splayfoot due to sinking of the foot
  • callus formation
  • sore skin
  • buck through protruding toes at the inner edge of the foot
  • Cornea
  • deformation of adjacent toes: Hammer toe, claw toe


Inner Hallux valgus Symptoms:

  • pressure pain
  • detached skin
  • load-dependent metatarsalgia (pain of the metatarsus)
  • Swelling of bursa
  • bursitis (inflammation of the bursa)
  • arthrotic alteration of the metatarsophalangeal joint of the big toe (hallux rigidus)


You want to know exactly about the causes?
Here you can go directly to the article Causes of Hallux valgus

Learn more

Painful hallux valgus symptoms – causes and relief

bursa inflammation: If you suffer from severe pain in the ball of your foot and are very sensitive to pressure, this could indicate bursitis. It is extremely painful and can occur both bacterially and non-bacterially. The inclined position of the big toe in the direction of the neighboring toe places an unnecessary load on the bursa. A bursa is designed to protect the joint from pressure and friction.
The bursa swells to buffer unwanted stresses such as:

  • the incorrect loading due to the inclination of the big toe
  • the friction of the soccer ball on the shoe


The more the shoe rubs, the more the bursa swells. It wants to protect. Bursitis is not to be fun: Talk to the doctor you trust to have an adäquate hallux valgus bursa treatment.

Tip!: Just here, fitting footwear is important to break this cycle and alleviate painful hallux valgus symptoms! And run barefoot if the pain allows it. This is where friction occurs least.

Hallux valgus symptoms – various severities

Medical scientists divide hallux valgus into different stages or severities.

Painful symptoms cannot be inferred from the severity of the hallux valgus symptoms. There are severe manifestations of Hallux valgus which are symptom-free and mild manifestations which are very painful. It is therefore very different for each individual which pain intensity is associated with which visible symptom. The splayfoot is often referred to as the hallux valgus precursor. The progressive inclination of the big toe – in combination with the bulge of the metatarsophalangeal joint on the inside of the foot – indicates the severity of the hallux valgus.

The splayfoot is also an indication of the development of hallux valgus and belongs to the hallux valgus symptoms. Typically the foot is lowered, calluses and cornea formation can occur on the sole of the foot. As with the real Hallux valgus, pressure points and corneal ulcers develop. Inflammatory pain, caused by e.g. bursitis, can also occur. However, the big toe still does not lie clearly in the direction of the neighboring toe.

Through the altered statics of the foot, exactly this is made possible, so that a hallux valgus can develop: If the big toe tilts in the direction of the middle toes and a wölbung forms on the inside of the foot, this indicates an incipient hallux valgus. Slowly your foot loses its typical shape and looks uneven. Now it's time to train your foot muscles regularly.

Read more about pain relief and treatment?
Here you can go directly to the article treatments for Hallux valgus

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Hallux valgus symptoms may vary depending on severity and individuality.

Severity 1 | Start

In the initial stage, the hallux angle is less than 15 degrees. Most of those affected do not describe any painful restrictions, there is often no symptoms. However, in rare cases, pressure points, cornea and torticollis may occur. Sometimes foot pain can be felt after long periods of standing or walking. Here hallux valgus symptoms such as faster fatigue of the feet can also occur. With suitable footwear such as UXGO shoes, the foot is given enough space and unnecessary provocation through friction is avoided. This prevents inflammatory processes.

Severity 2 | Deformation increases

For severity 2 the angle is between 16°-20°. The big toe is clearly inclined. Fatigue pain in the metatarsus or complaints such as pressure or ball pain now occur more frequently. Inflammation can also make your life more difficult. Longer standing and walking can lead to more frequent foot pain. A targeted strengthening of the foot muscles in combination with high-quality, adapted shoes makes sense. Other orthopaedic aids such as individual insoles reduce pain.

Severity level 3 | Hallux valgus is strongly pronounced

At an angle above 20° there may be severe foot pain and a significant deformation of the big toe. The longer those affected have a hallux valgus of this severity, the more intensively they complain of a variety of complaints: severe pain due to bursitis, calluses, pressure pain, pain at rest, movement pain and pain at rest. Despite intensive work with a physiotherapist, it is usually not possible to change the big toe to the starting position. In conversation with a specialist, various medical approaches can be discussed.

What helps relieve hallux symptoms?

  • Foot gymnastics
  • Fitting shoes
  • Orthop 
  • medicamentöse treatment
  • operation as last step

Ease symptoms – help yourself


As different as the hallux valgus symptoms are, they must be treated in a differentiated way. In most cases, the person who is suffering knows best what he or she is doing well.

Anti-inflammatory and analgesic drugs should only be used in consultation with a treating physician. Surgical procedures to minimize hallux valgus symptoms must also be carefully considered. Not every operation is free of complications, it is not always the case that the Hallux valgus symptoms are completely gone afterwards.

Orthopedic aids

They are used often and for many years. Bandages, toe spreaders, insoles and splints adapted to the individual feet can be worn. They are supposed to relieve the joints and give them recovery so that the hallux valgus symptoms are reduced. If the patient is growing, night splints still have an effect on the expression of the hallux valgus. The non-grown skeleton is flexible and therefore adaptable. Sometimes toe spreaders, which are soft gel or silicone pads, can also help. These can be placed between the toes, especially in the early stages.

Fitting shoes á la UXGO for example!

UXGO shoes are adapted to the natural shape of the feet. Each foot is wider at the front than at the heel. To develop the optimal shoe, the German company has developed an innovative last with the V-effect. The shoe supports the foot and encloses the heel area for a good, firm hold. In the front area it offers enormous space for sensitive toes. The seamless inner shoe and different shoe widths round off the well thought-out footwear.

After a Hallux valgus operation Hallux valgus insoles or even a Hallux valgus splint can be worn at width H in the shoe. The innovative models offer high wearing comfort due to their V-shape. The mere purchase of shoes of one size larger has no or even a bad effect. If a woman slips in the shoe now, pressure and friction arise again, which can lead to problems and painful inflammations.

Strong and healthy through life! 

When we compare our body to a tree, it looks like this: The foot is the root, the body the trunk and the head the treetop. As with a tree, the root is important for the whole alignment. A well rooted tree grows straight and lives long. The roots are important for our whole body posture. If we have healthy, strong legs, we stand more upright and stable, bad posture is prevented, pain or neck tension can be reduced. That is why Hallux valgus gymnastics is important for the feet.

Read more about pain relief and treatment?
Here you can go directly to the article treatments for Hallux valgus

learn more 

Hallux valgus symptoms – Conclusion


Hallux symptoms such as tilted big toe, calluses, cornea, cornea to invisible hallux valgus symptoms. The latter are pressure pain, pain in the metatarsus, swelling of the bursa and inflammation of the bursa as well as osteoarthritis. Our bones are the foundation, they stabilize us and are important for our whole body posture.

The hallux valgus symptoms are independent of their manifestation. The severity only indicates the angle of the deviation of the big toe. They do not give any information about the frequency and severity of hallux valgus symptoms. However, as hallux valgus progresses, hallux valgus symptoms can also be observed more frequently.

Fitting shoes and medical help

With suitable shoes, orthopaedic aids and physiotherapy, Hallux valgus symptoms can be alleviated. Sometimes you can control them for years without medication.

In case of severe pain and restrictions, anti-inflammatory, analgesic medication may be administered in consultation with a doctor. An operation can be considered as a last step.

Important note:

This article contains only general information and must not be used for self-diagnosis or self-treatment. It cannot replace a visit to the doctor. In case of foot pain caused by Hallux valgus, make an appointment with an orthopaedist, preferably a foot specialist.