When the toe of a foot gets bent on the middle of the digit, there arises a condition that is commonly referred to as Hammer toe This condition targets the second, third and fifth toe of the foot most often. However, it should clearly not be confused with another condition known as " mallet toe ", which is just a condition on the upper joint of a digit. Claw toe is another similar condition, with dorsiflexion of the proximal phalanx on the lesser metatarsophalangeal joint , combined with flexion of both the proximal and distal interphalangeal joints. Claw toe can affect the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes. Bone procedure is associated with the bone. There are two common procedures which include joint fusion and arthroplasty of joint. The severity of the deformity is a decisive factor for determining suitable bone associated surgery for the condition. The time of procedure depends on the type of surgery as well as the number of corrections required. Usually anesthesia does not allow pain during procedure after procedure the pain can be managed with pain killer medicines. The most common cause of hammer toe is wearing short, narrow shoes that are too tight. The toe is forced into a bent position. Muscles and tendons in the toe tighten and become shorter. Unfortunately, surgery often does not improve the appearance of toes. Rather, surgery is used to loosen the tendons and muscles pulling the toes into a painful shape. This improves the ability to walk without pain and to wear shoes comfortably. Wearing shoes that do not cramp the toes in a bent position is the best way to treat these toe conditions, and therefore prevent surgery. Mallet Toe is a deformity at the end of the toe. As the end joint constricts, the end of the toe looks somewhat like a mallet. At the end of the day, avoid stressing your toes too much and most importantly, take care that you do not bump the concerned toe while going about your activities. Keep a close watch on any discomfort or unusual pain in case of any complications. Recovery will also depend on the age, sex and the overall health of that person. I sign off here! Take care! Claw Toe forms in the base joint that joins the toe to the rest of the foot. When this joint constricts, the toe takes on a claw-like appearance. Prevention of digital deformity is much the same as preventative methods for development of bunions (hallux abducto valgus), which we discussed over the last two weeks. The etiology of the deformity must be identified early and corrected so that the foot never needs to compensate for that abnormality. Certainly wearing comfortable and supportive shoes, contrary to shoving toes into “pointy-toed” stilettos will decrease your chances of developing hammertoes, but it is a deformity that is much less predictable for occurrence than some other more debilitating and noticeable deformities of the foot. is typically caused by wearing shoes that do not fit properly. They are usually too tight and squeeze the toes together. Typically shoes that are too restrictive in the toe box or shoes that have high heels cause unnatural bending of the toes leading to the hammer shaped appearance. If the pain does not go away and limits your ability to walk comfortably or perform typical range of motion movements you should see a podiatrist. It is also recommended you see a doctor if one or more toes has developed a hammer-like shape. Cushioning or supportive items such as straps, non-medicated felt pads, moleskin, splints, toe shields or caps protect and reposition your toe and relieve pain. Talk to your doctor, podiatrist or chiropractor about corrective footwear, orthotics or other foot devices. These can provide support and alignment (check to see if you wear out the soles of your shoes on one side) You should also avoid super-snug stockings, nylons and socks. Without anesthesia, I removed the offending portion of his nailand had him soak his foot twice a day. No antibiotics were givenand a week later the redness and infection were gone. What causes a mallet toe? The American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS) offers information on this site as an educational service. The content of FootCareMD, including text, images and graphics, is for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnoses or treatments. If you need medical advice, use the "Find an Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Surgeon" tool at the top of this page or contact your primary doctor. In this procedure, the flexor tendon, or then tendon on the bottom of the toe is contracted (tight) and is thus causing the end of the toe to bend downward. Any person with this injury will tell you they were surprised by how much they use their toe during the day. Every step places pressure across the big toe It is difficult to avoid walking during the day, which creates daily stress into the injured ligaments. This daily strain is a complicating factor for the slow resolution of the injury and progression of recovery. If your hammertoe has a lot of rigidity, your podiatrist will set the tendons straight through the incision, and also take out parts of bones. Then the bones will have to be fixed up for the time being, allowing the affected toe to be corrected.