Hammer Toe

Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. -  - Podiatry

Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc.

Podiatry & Foot & Ankle Surgery located in Oxnard, Ventura, Santa Barbara, Camarillo, Palmdale, & Westlake Village, CA

For hammertoes that are painful, bent, or stiff, visit the podiatry experts at Foot & Ankle Concepts Inc. The team there provides care throughout Oxnard, Palmdale, Westlake Village, Santa Barbara, Ventura, and Camarillo, California, for your convenience. With conservative and surgical care options, the foot and ankle surgeons address your concerns with compassion and diligence. Schedule a consultation online or by phone today to learn more about hammertoe treatment options.

Hammer Toe Q & A

What is a hammertoe?

Hammertoes are typically located at the second, third, and fourth toes and cause an upward bending at the middle joint. This can cause pain and friction where the point of your toe and top of your toe rubs on your shoe, potentially causing blisters and corns.

It is possible to have more than one hammertoe, and your hammertoes can be aggravated by the shoes you wear, especially if they are too short or have a small toe box. Court sports and running can also make your discomfort worse because your toes are pressed against the toe box of your shoe.

What causes hammertoes?

Hammertoes are caused by an imbalance between the muscles and tendons in your toes. This can be due to muscle tension elsewhere in your leg, neurological issues, or trauma. In some cases, hammertoes may be hereditary.

Common symptoms of hammertoes include:

  • Pain or irritation at the affected toe when you’re wearing shoes
  • Soft or hard corns and calluses where your toe rubs against your shoe
  • Inflammation, redness, or a burning feeling
  • Contracture of the toe

Hammertoes develop slowly over time. In the early stages, you can still straighten your toe. Without treatment, hammertoes can progress to a point where you’re unable to straighten the toe and the deformity becomes permanent. In cases like these, surgery may be required to restore normal function to your foot.

How are hammertoes diagnosed?

To diagnose hammertoes, your doctor first completes a medical history and evaluation of your feet, comparing your normal toes to those that are painful or bent. Your foot exam also includes testing of the flexibility and strength of the muscles in your feet, the range of motion of your joints, and assessment of nerve function in your feet.

Your podiatrist takes X-rays to check for any abnormalities in your feet or involvement of other joints if needed. Based on their findings, your doctor diagnoses your hammertoe and recommends appropriate treatment.

What is the treatment for hammertoes?

At Foot & Ankle Concepts Inc. your doctor aims to use conservative methods as the first step in the treatment of hammertoes. Common treatment options include changing your shoes, wearing orthotics, using padding for corns and calluses, and taking medications — like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories — to reduce discomfort and inflammation.

For hammertoes that have become rigid or that have developed open sores, surgery may be necessary. As foot and ankle surgeons, the team has the training and experience necessary to perform safe and effective surgical corrections of hammertoes.

Get treatment for your hammertoes today by calling or scheduling online with the team at Foot & Ankle Concepts Inc.