A hammertoe is typically found in the second and third toe and is characterized by a raised joint in the middle of the toe. The tip of the toe curls under the foot as the middle joint raises up. In the early stages, the hammertoe may still be flexible, but later on, it may become rigid. This deformity can be caused by the long-term wearing of high heels, which often have a small and pointed-toe box. Hammertoe also can be congenital or caused by arthritis. Symptoms of a hammertoe are curling toes, raised joints, callus formation under the affected toe, and pain on the affected joint from rubbing against the top of a shoe. Wearing shoes that fit properly is one way of decreasing the development of hammertoe because once it is formed it is likely to become permanent. Avoid wearing shoes that squeeze the toes together, especially those that force the weight of the body onto the ball of the foot. Treatment for hammertoe varies, depending on the severity of the deformity. Treatment can range from wearing protective pads or strapping down the toe, to surgery on the joint and removal of bone. For more information on dealing with a hammertoe and its side effects, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist.
Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists from New York. Our doctors will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.
Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.
- Pain in the affected toes
- Development of corns or calluses due to friction
- Contracture of the toes
Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible
Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur
Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe
Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe
Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it
Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used
Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option
If you have any questions please contact one of our offices located in Ozone Park, and Manhasset, NY . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.