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

Hanover (717) 524-1034


 

What Causes Hammertoe?

Monday, 01 April 2019 00:00

If you notice your middle toes are bent in a downward position, you may have what is referred to as hammertoe. The second toe is typically affected, and it may resemble a hammer as a result of the way it is bent. The most common reasons for hammertoes to develop may be from wearing footwear that does not fit correctly. These may include shoes which do not have ample room for the toes to move freely in. Additional reasons why this condition may develop may be genetic factors, or existing medical conditions which may include bunions or arthritis. Many people experience common symptoms when hammertoe has developed. These may include toe pain when the toes are stretched downward, toes that are curled, or thickened skin on the affected toe and surrounding areas. Hammertoes may be prevented by wearing shoes that fit correctly, and this often means choosing shoes that have adequate room for the toes to move about in. If you have this ailment, please consult with a podiatrist who can discuss proper treatment options with you.

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Jim Maxka of South Penn Foot & Ankle Associates. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that occurs due to an imbalance in the muscles, tendons, or ligaments that normally hold the toe straight. It can be caused by the type of shoes you wear, your foot structure, trauma, and certain disease processes.

Symptoms

  • Painful and/or difficult toe movement
  • Swelling
  • Joint stiffness
  • Calluses/Corns
  • Physical deformity

Risk Factors

  • Age – The risk of hammertoe increases with age
  • Sex – Women are more likely to have hammertoe compared to men
  • Toe Length – You are more likely to develop hammertoe if your second toe is longer than your big toe
  • Certain Diseases – Arthritis and diabetes may make you more likely to develop hammertoe

Treatment

If you have hammertoe, you should change into a more comfortable shoe that provides enough room for your toes. Exercises such as picking up marbles may strengthen and stretch your toe muscles. Nevertheless, it is important to seek assistance from a podiatrist in order to determine the severity of your hammertoe and see which treatment option will work best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Hanover, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Hammertoe
Connect with us