Get Expert Treatment for Hammertoes
A hammertoe is a deformity of the toe, typically involving the second, third and fourth toe. Hammertoes are recognized by an abnormal bend in the middle joint of the toe. In many cases, hammertoes can be treated by wearing more comfortable footwear. More severe cases may require surgery for complete relief.
If you have symptoms of a hammertoe, see a foot and ankle specialist at UPMC. Our specialists and surgeons offer the latest therapies and treatments for hammertoes in Williamsport, Lock Haven, Lewisburg, Berwick, Muncy, State College, and Wellsboro, PA.
Hammertoes typically develop when there is an imbalance between the muscles that straighten and bend the toe. When this occurs, it puts pressure on the joints and tendons, creating tightness, shortening and hardening of the muscles.
Hammertoes may be caused by an inherited trait, improperly fitting footwear, foot trauma or certain diseases like arthritis.
The most recognizable symptom of hammertoes is a deformity in the toe. This deformity can cause other symptoms, including:
- Corns on the top of the toe
- Misaligned joint from pressure on the toe
- Limited range of motion and complete immobility
At UPMC, experienced doctors and surgeons provide a range of effective treatments for hammertoes. The initial step will be nonsurgical if the condition is caught early on.
Nonsurgical treatment includes wearing shoes with a toe box that allow your toes to fully extend (you should have half an inch of space in front of your longest toe, which could be your second toe).
Your doctor may also suggest stretching exercises to help strengthen and stretch your toe. Pads, straps and orthotics may be recommended to help control muscle imbalance in your foot. Medications will help relieve swelling and pain.
If a hammertoe has progressed to a rigid stage, surgery may be needed to treat the problem effectively.
UPMC offers quality treatment and individualized care for hammertoes in Muncy, Lewisburg, Berwick, Lock Haven, State College, Wellsboro and Williamsport, PA.