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Beginning as a slight deformity of the toe, hammertoes are little toes that bend at the joint. Factors that play a role in the bending toes are tight shoes, previous injuries, genetics, or an imbalance between the muscles and the tendons. Other than bent toes, the symptoms include:

  • Pain when wearing shoes
  • Corns or calluses
  • Inflamation
  • Open sores

If treatment of hammertoe is neglected in the early stages, the condition will worsen with toes becoming rigid and the condition harder to correct. Hammertoe will not go away without treatment. To begin treatment, the first usual change is in shoe choice. The patient should stop wearing shoes that cramp the toes and, instead, wear shoes that have a roomy toe-box. Visit a doctor for advice on removing corns or to have calluses shaved. Custom orthotics can control the imbalance between the muscles and the tendons. To realign the toes, splints are often used. Over the counter NSAIDs like ibuprofen will help with inflammation and pain, but the doctor can also give corticosteroid injections in more severe cases. Surgery is only suggested for hammertoes when the toes become rigid or if a sore appears.

Heartland Podiatry, PC
2406 South R.D. Mize Rd.  •  Independence, MO 64057  •  816-478-3338
1161 SE Oldham Parkway  •  Lee’s Summit, MO 64081  •  816-478-3338