A hammertoe is a common foot deformity in which one of the toes becomes bent at the joint. Hammertoes can affect the second, third, or fourth toe, and are usually a result of tight or poorly fitting shoes. In its latest stages, a hammertoe can become so severe that the toe cannot return to its original position and surgery must be performed. Hammertoes can be treated by a podiatrist, but the manner of treatment depends on the stage of the condition.
In its earliest stage, the hammertoe remains flexible and can still be moved. A podiatrist may provide a splint for your toe that will hold it in place, or you may simply need to switch to better-fitting shoes. Supporting inserts can be placed in your shoes to help reduce the friction and pressure that cause a hammertoe. Toe boxes can also be used to give your hammertoe support and allow it to heal more effectively.
Toe exercises that are approved by your podiatrist, such as grasping a towel with your toes, can also help to stretch your foot muscles and restore them to proper functionality again. If you are experiencing substantial discomfort as a result of your hammertoe, the podiatrist can give you a cortisone shot to reduce the pain.
In its later stage, the toe’s tendons become rigid and cannot be moved. At this stage, surgery is the only option to restore the toe to its original position and prevent further complications. The usual procedure involves removing bone from the joint or transferring the toe’s tendon to a different position in order to give the toe room to straighten.
At Family Foot Center, we have been providing first-rate diagnosis and treatment to patients in the New York City area for more than 23 years. Our areas of focus include hammertoes, heel pain, sprained and twisted ankles, and plantar warts. To learn more about our services or to schedule an appointment, call us today at (718) 767-5555. We take ANY INSURANCE that lets US treat YOU!