Hammertoes are a contracture (bending) of one or more joints in the small toes. The small toes appear to be curling under themselves causing a buckling of the joints. The toe deformities are mild at first being flexible, and become more painful and stiff (rigid) overtime if left untreated.
Muscle/tendon imbalance due to a systemic condition or poor foot biomechanics are the most common causes of hammertoes.
Other causes are trauma related or are inherited.
Pain when ambulating with shoes.
Corns or Callus: excessive hard skin where the hammertoes are contracted or on the bottom of the foot, or at the distal tip of the toe.
Soreness and or burning pain in the toes, swelling, redness, ulcers may present due to the deformity.
The foot and ankle surgeon will obtain a thorough history and physical, as well as determine the cause of the hammer toes, as this will help establish appropriate treatment.
Hammertoes are progressive and will never go away on their own, so it’s best to have them treated by your foot and ankle surgeon as soon as possible to prevent the condition from worsening. Also,ask about our minimally invasive hammertoe procedure. Our foot and ankle surgeons can help determine the best treatment options for you.