A hammer toe or contracted toe is a deformity of the proximal interphalangeal joint of the second, third, or fourth toe, causing it to be permanently bent, resembling a hammer.
Causes: Hammer toe most frequently results from wearing poorly fitting shoes that can force the toe into a bent position, such as excessively high heels or shoes that are too short or narrow for the foot. Having the toes bent for long periods of time can cause the muscles in them to shorten, resulting in the hammer toe deformity. This is often found in conjunction with bunions or other foot problems. It can also be caused by muscle, nerve, or joint damage resulting from conditions such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, stroke, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease or diabetes.
Treatment: Dr. Shumate may choose to treat your hammertoe with corn pads & cushions to relieve pain caused by friction, orthodics, medication, or perhaps surgery.