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Saturday, March 17, 2018

Hallux Rigidus with Spurs: Role of Spica Taping

Dear Dr. Blake,

I am curious if you can see this Taping treatment as a way to restrict ROM for those with hallux rigidus + bone spurs in activities such as running (and other exercises that cause joint flexion)? I have been using a rigid foot plate for my hallux rigidus that was diagnosed about 6 months ago, but I believe it's throwing off my gait / causing further injury to my arch/heel/ankle. I am curious if you think taping could be an effective replacement treatment protocol for this condition... longterm! :) Thank you for this video, Dr. Blake! There isn't much info out there about using taping for hallux rigidus, so I would appreciate your thoughts!

Dr. Blake's comment: Yes, Spica taping is a very suitable alternative to carbon plates, without the dramatic effect on the whole body. That being said, there are many things you should do, and it is okay to rotate. I think using the flat carbon plates one out of workouts, maybe your easy workouts are great with or without the taping. You should develop with a local orthotic person an arch support that gets the weight centered on your foot with the arch part, and then uses a dancer's pad construction to take pressure off the big toe joint itself. Some shoes it will be good to skip the lace closest to the bone spur, and just design dancer's padding and use hapad longitudinal medial arch pads in shoes that cannot fit orthotics. If you have not tried the Hoka One One line, please do. The built-in rocker lessens the stress through the ball of the foot. Get some 1/4 inch adhesive felt from and apply on top of the foot just off the joint towards the arch. Usually, you use a one-inch square piece. For this problem, you can place another piece over the big toe itself (nothing over the spur) to help limit the bend of the joint.
But, I digress. Back to the taping. Once you are good with KT or RockTape, try to advance to 3M Nexcare Waterproof Tape and then Leukotape with Coverlet. These get stronger and stronger to do the job intended, but they are harder to work with so you better practice first with KT. The leukotape, the stronger tape I know, cannot actually touch the skin, thus you need the coverlet first placed on your skin. With 3M or Leuko start very loose to get used to it and the tension it gives. Good Luck. Rich
PS The key point, tape is good, but use other methods to take the pressure off the joint with it. If you are pronating, you must get a shoe that eliminates that problem, or the tape will not work in the long run.

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Thank you very much for leaving a comment. Due to my time restraints, some comments may not be answered.I will answer questions that I feel will help the community as a whole.. I can only answer medical questions in a general form. No specific answers can be given. Please consult a podiatrist, therapist, orthopedist, or sports medicine physician in your area for specific questions.