Hammertoe

A hammertoe is typically the painful bending of the toe. In most cases the hammertoe is bent and stiff in that position (unable to be straightened). The hammertoe may bend at any of the joints or all of the joints simultaneously. The bending can cause pressure on the toes, especially while wearing shoes. There are many symptoms associated with hammertoes
 
 *Pain or redness in toes 
 *Pain while wearing shoes
 *Corns or calluses (build up of skin) on he tops, bottoms or tips of toes. 
 
The corns and calluses associated with a hammertoe can become painful and should only be trimmed or treated by a Podiatric Surgeon.
 

       


    
 Hammertoe of the fifth (small) toe. 






  







   Hammertoe of the Second toe 






A common cause of hammertoes is muscle or tendon tightening. When the tendon or muscle tightens it causes the downward turning of the toe. Shoes can often be the cause for this tightening, when shoes are too short the toes are crowded. The constant crowding leaves the toes stiff and the tendons eventually shorten. Hammertoes can be a hereditary trait, and can also be caused by trauma.

There are several approaches to hammertoe correction. Some of the Non-surgical approaches include: 
 *Trimming of the corn or callus
 *Padding the toes, corn or callus
 *Wearing larger shoes
 *Medications to make pain and daily activities manageable
 *Taping or strapping of the toes

In cases where non-surgical approached have been exhausted, surgery may be required to ease pain. There are many different procedures for hammertoe correction, talking to your podiatrist is the only way to know which procedure is correct for you.