1st MTP joint fusion / arthrodesis is a very reliable procedure to reduce / eliminate pain from underlying arthritis affecting the 1st MTP joint (Hallux Rigidus). Typically patients with advanced arthritis, have restricted motion of the 1st MTP joint, compared to normal. This is often associated with large bone spurs that are present on the dorsal / top aspect of the joint.
A fusion of the 1st MTP joint, prevents painful movement of the joint, where there is no longer protective cartilage lining the bone surfaces.
Dr. Smith performs 1st MTP joint fusion procedures as a day procedure. You will be able to weight bear immediately in a postoperative Darco shoe.
The technique for the procedure, involved making an incision along the medial (inner) side of your 1st MTP joint. Any bony spurs that are present are removed, and the joint surfaces are prepared. The Joint is then held in position with a combination of a thin dorsal plate and screws (These are specifically designed for this joint, and are rarely palpable). Often bone graft is used to increase the rate of successful union of the two bones. Any associated angulation is corrected at the time of the procedure.
A bandage will be applied, and you will be able to weight bear immediately in a Darco shoe which is typically kept on for 5-6 weeks. You will be seen again in Dr. Smith’s rooms 2 weeks following the procedure, and a follow-up xray will also be taken at 3-4 moths following the procedure to confirm that the arthrodesis has healed (‘united’).