Dr Brandon Nelson, A Board Certified Foot & Ankle Physician and Surgeon, Discusses Hammer Toes

Dr Brandon Nelson, A Board Certified Foot & Ankle Physician and Surgeon, Discusses Hammer Toes

hammertoe


Hammer toes
are a condition that affects usually multiple toes in the foot.  This condition can occur on one foot or both.  It is often part of an overall deformity of the foot for example a bunion with hammer toes is common.  There tends to be a family history of hammer toes and pain can begin as the condition worsens.  Often patients will present with pain from shoe gear rubbing or pain with activities like running.  The hammer toes are a progressive deformity and I encourage early intervention to manage the deformity.

The most common cause of hammer toes is the foot trying to stabilize itself.  Often the long flexor tendons of the foot are working to create an arch or support the arch.  Patients often have a flatfoot associated with this pathology and the hammer toes start to progress as the foot becomes flatter.  The foot works hard to try and stop the flattening and the flexor tendons begin to overpower the digits.  The digits begin to curt and hammering is the result. 

The only long-term fix of hammer toes is surgical.  The procedure itself is relatively straightforward and quick.  It involves removing a piece of bone and often lengthening a tendon or releasing some soft tissues.  It is a stepwise approach to the hammer toe that provides the best long-term outcomes.  I have patients that choose to have it done with just some local anesthetic and the recovery is uneventful.

If you are suffering from curling digits and need an evaluation I can help.  Please contact the office at 425-391-8666 or make an appointment online today.

Sincerely,

Dr Brandon Nelson

Board Certified Physician and Surgeon

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