Thursday, May 04, 2006

Hallux Rigidus

I went to my orthopedic doctor today to figure out what is going on with the large toe on my left foot. The pain in this toe has gradual become worse over the past year. Nothing that would stop me from running, but enough to make me take notice; especially if I try to run hills or do anything else that causes me to move up on my toes.

His diagnosis was simple: Hallux Rigidus (stiff toe). In simple terms, I’ve got arthritis in the joint of the large toe. You can clearly see in the x-ray that I have very little cartilage left in the joint.. The surgical options aren’t pretty and don’t work well on runners anyway. He told me to keep running and take an anti-inflammatory regularly (like Celebrex). He also recommended 1500 mg of glucosamine per day. This is the same stuff we feed our 11 year our lab mix to help with his bad joints. Seems to work for him, I imagine it will work for me.

Other than the toe, everything else seems to be working again. I ran a very easy 3 miles this morning at a 9:10/m pace with no problem. I’ll slowly build up the miles again in preparation for the Grand Canyon on 19 May.

Keep running

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