Hammertoe is a deformity of the second, third or fourth toes. In this condition, the toe is bent at the middle joint, resembling a hammer. Left untreated, hammertoes can become inflexible and require surgery. People with hammertoe may have corns or calluses on the top of the middle joint of the toe or on the tip of the toe. They may also feel pain in their toes or feet and have difficulty finding comfortable shoes.
The most common cause of hammertoe is a muscle and tendon imbalance. This imbalance, which leads to a bending of the toe, results from mechanical (structural) changes in the foot that occur over time in some people. Improperly fitting shoes often times aggravate the condition.
Treatment for the condition typically involves proper shoes with roomy toe boxes, toe exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles, and surgery in severe or longstanding cases.
Hammer Toe Surgery
Hammer Toe surgery is performed when conservative measures have been exhausted and pain or deformity still persists. The surgery is performed on an out-patient basis. It typically required about one hour of time. During surgery, our surgeons employ the highest quality skills and materials to alleviate your pain but also give you the best possible cosmetic outcome.
An incision is place over the proximal interphangeal joint. Once the bone is exposed, the distal portion of the proximal phalanx is removed. Our surgeons may then use pins or other fixation device to assist in straightening the toe. These devices may be removed at a later date if necessary.
Recovery for hammer toe surgery is approximately ten to fourteen days. You are able to walk immediately following the surgery in a surgical shoe. Swelling tends to stick around a lot longer but is managed as needed. Physical therapy is used to help reduce swelling in the toe or toes after surgery.
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