If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right.Switch to Accessible Site

What Causes Hammertoe?

Tuesday, 23 July 2019 00:00

The medical condition that is known as hammertoe occurs when the second and third toes bend downward at the middle joint, causing them to resemble a hammer. This ailment can come from genetic factors, or from wearing shoes that do not have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Additionally, there may be existing medical conditions which can lead to the development of hammertoes, which can include bunions, or different forms of arthritis. The symptoms that are associated with this condition often include pain in the foot as the toes are stretched downward, and there may be calluses and corns that form on the top of the bent joints. Mild relief may be found when the feet are soaked in warm water, which can make it easier for the toes to stretch by pointing and flexing the ankles. For severe cases of hammertoe, a splint is applied to the affected toes to help keep them as straight as possible. If you have developed this condition, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer treatment options that are correct for you.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists from Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Connect with us