Hammertoe is the term used to refer to a bending in the common of the toe. A hammertoe can occur in one toe or in several toes, with the exception of the great toe. When more than one toe is affected the condition is mentioned in the plural, hammertoes. This abnormal bending of the joints can result in unsightly lesions or pain from pressure of the toes when wearing shoes. If you suspect you have a hammertoe consult a podiatrist in Boston to confirm a diagnosis since the condition can get progressively worse over time.
Quite often the first symptom of a hammertoe is pain when wearing shoes. You may notice a painful lesion between two or several of your toes or that your toes curl or bend to one way or the other. Other symptoms of hammertoes include pain in toenails, pain at the forefront of the toe, or thick lesions on the tops of the toes that may be discolored. In some cases, hammertoes may not be painful at all.
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Common causes of hammertoes include wearing high heels or tight fitting shoes that create bunions and push the second toe out of place. People with flat feet often get hammertoes. In some instances hammertoes may be hereditary.
There are a series of different treatment options for hammertoes. In most all cases, your Boston foot care doctor will suggest changing your shoe gear and avoiding high-heeled shoes that place pressure on the toes. Other non-invasive measures include the utilization of padding between the toes and creams to soften the skin. Avoid over the counter acid treatments. Your Boston podiatrist may debride the lesions based on the severity. Hammertoes can be surgically corrected, only as a measure of last resort.
A corn is a thickened growth of skin that forms on the toes when the bones push against shoes or other toes, creating friction against the skin. Hard corns typically develop on the upper part of the toe or at the edge of the small toe, while soft corns are similar to open sores which develop between the toes. Corns are almost always caused from wearing restrictive shoes that place repeated pressure on the toes. But hammertoes and other toe deformities can be the origin of their development as well.
The first and most obvious step for treating a corn is to stop wearing shoes that are building up pressure. Buy shoes that allow plenty of toe room, and if needed, ask your podiatrist about a corn foam pad that can prevent pressure and reduce further irritation to the affected area. A corn can be removed easily and painlessly by a podiatrist by shaving it with a scalpel. And if the pain persists and the corn is not reducing in size, see you are podiatrist for professional care and treatment.
The information in this section is provided as a resource only and shouldn’t be taken as a substitute for professional medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis. If you have questions or foot care issues, consult with a qualified Boston podiatrist or foot care doctor in Boston.