Have you noticed lately that one or more of your toes appear to be bending at the middle joint when your foot is at rest? If so, you may be developing a hammertoe. At First Coast Foot & Ankle Clinic, we want patients to seek treatment early for this condition. Below are some facts about hammertoes:
FACT: Hammertoe is a progressive condition. That means it will only get worse and not better without treatment. If you notice one of your toes beginning to appear bent (hammertoe can affect the second, third, fourth or fifth toe), it’s important that you contact our Duval County office promptly for an appointment by calling: 904-739-9129.
FACT: The most common cause of a hammertoe is a muscle/tendon imbalance caused by either neurological or biomechanical changes in the foot. In some patients, the tendency for hammertoe can be inherited. It can also be caused by a previous injury.
FACT: Wearing shoes with narrow, tight toe boxes and high heels that force toes downward can accelerate a hammertoe and make the condition worse. If you have a hammertoe, it’s essential that you choose shoes made of soft materials that have roomy toe boxes.
FACT: Our podiatrists Dr. Vimal A. Reddy and Dr. Jeffrey Brimmer will need to examine your foot even if the appearance of the hammertoe is obvious. The foot doctor will want to get your medical history and may also order x-rays to see the full extent of the deformity and to use for checking the progression of the hammertoe.
FACT: There are treatment options available for hammertoes. Custom orthotics, splints or straps to realign the toe, exercises, and medications to help reduce pain and inflammation are all conservative treatments for this condition. When a hammertoe is severe, surgery may be needed to correct the problem.
For more information about hammertoes, get in touch with our Jacksonville office today.