What is it?
A hammertoe occurs with the bending of one or both joints of any toe except the big toe. This causes pain in the toe, especially when wearing shoes.
Causes, Symptoms and Risk Factors
Hammertoes can be hereditary or caused by injury. They also are commonly caused by unevenness between a toe’s muscles and tendons. Hammertoe symptoms include:
- Toe pain, especially when wearing shoes
- A buildup of skin (called a corn) on the toe or foot caused by friction with the shoe
A doctor will check for hammertoes by examining the foot and checking toe movement. The doctor may take X-rays to determine the severity of the hammertoe.
- Padding corns and calluses
- Avoiding shoes with pointed toes or high heels
- Ensuring proper shoe fit
- Placing an orthotic device in the shoe
- Taking anti-inflammatory medication
- Injecting a steroid into the joint to ease pain and inflammation
If the pain persists, the doctor may perform surgery to realign the toe.