Hammertoes Corns and Bone Spurs
Toronto podiatrist Sheldon Nadal, D.P.M., offers permanent correction of foot pain due to hammertoes, corns, calluses, bone spurs and dropped metatarsals, in his Toronto podiatry office, using the latest Minimally Invasive Surgery techniques with local anesthetic. The work is performed using specialized instruments through very small portals. This results in less soft tissue trauma which usually means less post operative pain and swelling.
Whenever possible, the joint surfaces are preserved and fusion is avoided. This results in a more natural appearance and better function. Toes can be straightened, bone spurs removed, and pressure relieved so that it will be easier for you to get back to wearing your shoes without pain, and, in the vast majority of cases, our patients are no longer embarrassed by the way their feet look.
Also referred to as digiti flexus, a hammertoe is a contracted toe due to tightening of the extensor and flexor tendons. The most commonly contracted toes are the second and fifth, but this deformity can occur on any toe. A hammertoe of the great toe is sometimes called a hallux flexus or a "trigger toe" Hammertoes are common among adolescents, when rapid growth of the foot occurs before shoe sizes are increased; a hammertoe results to compensate. Hammertoes may be congenital, hereditary, or acquired due to trauma or disease. The second toe is easily traumatized due to the retrograde force from stockings and/or small fitted shoes since it is typically the longest toe. Arthritis may also be a cause.
Corns, calluses and blisters result from friction and pressure of the shoe against a bony prominence.
Hammertoes may be flexible or rigid in motion. The joints of the toe may become enlarged and deformed causing decreased range of motion of the toe joint.
Treatment for hammertoes can be conservative or surgical. Conservative treatment may includes wearing different footwear or accommodative orthodigital devices to relieve compression of the toe. Prescription orthotics can be made at the podiatrist's office to help relieve the discomfort caused by hammertoes. The device reduces the weight load of the lesser toes, forces the soft tissue back under the metatarsal heads, and extends contracted toes to reduce the pressure from calluses and shoes. In early stages, especially in children, the use of adhesive materials to straighten the toe is often sufficient. Splints may help the toe to maintain alignment. Moldable plastic materials and silicon products have been used to create splints for hammertoes. The benefit of these devices is that they are washable so they can be reused. Extra depth shoes allow freedom in the forefoot, in turn relieving pressure on the toes; these shoes typically have a removable insole that can be ground down to accomodate dorsiflexed toes.
On the other hand, only a surgical intervention can correct a hammertoe and treat chronic corns and calluses. A small opening can be made, with local anesthetic, in order to relax the contraction by lengthening the tendon, and if necessary, shortening the bone and straightening the joint.
Orthotic control is recommended afterward in order to reinforce the proper alignment of the toes.
If you suffer from hammertoe pain and discomfort, please call the Toronto foot clinic of Sheldon Nadal, D.P.M. at 416-486-9917 for a consultation. We will be happy to help you.
For more information on the types of foot problems we treat, please go to www.footcare.net