A hammertoe, or abnormal bend in your toe joint, is easiest to treat in its early stages. If you think you have a hammertoe, the expert podiatrists at Bay Area Foot Care offer treatments for all types of hammertoes. Bay Area Foot Care has locations in San Rafael, Castro Valley, Pleasanton, Oakland, Walnut Creek, and San Leandro, California, as well as in the neighborhoods of Lower Pacific Heights, Inner Richmond, NoPa, and the Mission District in San Francisco. Call your nearest office or book an appointment online today.
Hammertoe is a bending (contracture) of the first joint in your toe, called the proximal interphalangeal joint. The contracture makes your toe look like an upside-down V. A hammertoe can affect any toe but is most common in the second through fifth toes.
There are two types of hammertoe:
The most noticeable symptom of a hammertoe is an abnormal bend in the toe. Other hammertoe signs and symptoms include:
Friction from wearing shoes may also lead to corns or calluses between your toes or on the ball of your foot.
Hammertoes result from an imbalance in the muscles and tendons in your toes. This imbalance increases pressure on the joints of your toe and leads to its contracture.
Wearing tight shoes that squeeze your toes may aggravate a hammertoe and cause symptoms to develop more quickly. Injuries, arthritis, and bunions can also disrupt the muscle/tendon balance and lead to hammertoe.
Although hammertoes are immediately apparent, Bay Area Foot Care thoroughly reviews your symptoms and medical history and examines your foot to diagnose the condition. You may also need a digital X-ray to evaluate the severity of your hammertoe deformity.
Then, Bay Area Foot Care develops an individualized treatment plan. If your hammertoe is still flexible, you may use non-surgical treatments, such as:
If your hammertoe is rigid and painful or develops an open sore, surgery may be necessary. Bay Area Foot Care has the leading foot and ankle surgeons in Northern California.
Call Bay Area Foot Care or book an appointment online as soon as you notice signs and symptoms of a hammertoe.