Hammertoe is a deformity of the foot that causes toes to bend or curl in a downward fashion rather than point forward. This deformity is typically the result of a muscle imbalance between the tendons on top and the tendons on the bottom of the toe. Hammer toes can be flexible or rigid and they can affect any toe on your foot. Most cases of hammertoe in Boynton Beach or Boca Raton are reported on the second or third toe.
Women are at a higher risk of developing hammer toe compared to men, mainly because of their shoe choice (high heels). Hammertoes tend to worsen over time, so it’s important to seek medical treatment at Family Foot Center from our podiatrists in Boynton Beach or Boca Raton when they first begin to form. Because of this, hammer toe can become a serious problem—this is especially true for people with diabetes—that could affect your ability to walk.
Types and Causes of Hammertoe in Boynton Beach or Boca Raton
There are generally two types of hammertoe: flexible and rigid. If the toe can still move at the joint, and the toe is still moveable, it is considered a flexible hammertoe. This form of hammertoe is in the beginning stages of its development, which means it can be reversed non-surgically. If left untreated, though, your flexible hammertoe can become rigid, which means the toe can no longer move on its own. If you suffer from this type of hammertoe in Boca Raton or Boynton Beach, it usually requires surgery to correct.
A hammertoe develops due to an imbalance of the muscles in the toes. The unbalance typically causes increased pressure on the tendons and joints in the toe, which when hammer toe develops. While poor shoe choice is typically the main cause of hammertoe, other common causes include:
- Other foot conditions (such as bunions or corns)
Contact our team at Family Foot Center to learn more about the different types of hammertoes and how we can help.
Boynton Beach, FL and Boca Raton, FL Hammertoe Treatment
Treating hammertoe varies depending on the severity of your condition. To treat mild hammertoe, Dr. Pinsky, Dr. Greissman or Dr. Aedo, our podiatrists in Boynton Beach and Boca Raton will start with conservative methods—such as padding or anti-inflammatory medications. Flexible hammertoe can be corrected by simply wearing properly fitting shoes, while other treatments involve gently stretching the toes to relieve pain and reposition it.
If the toe has become rigid and is causing too much pain, our foot doctors in Boynton Beach, FL or Boca Raton, FL may choose to surgically remove the deformity. Surgery is performed to reposition the toe, remove deformed or injured bone, and realign tendons. Most procedures are performed on an outpatient basis and rarely require extended downtime or time away from work.
Schedule an appointment with one of our podiatrists in Boca Raton, FL or Boynton Beach, FL for a hammertoe consultation.