Hammer Toe Specialist

Hoosier Foot & Ankle

Podiatrists & Foot & Ankle Surgeons located in Carmel, Fishers, Franklin, Greenwood, Indianapolis, and Zionsville, IN

As the name implies, hammertoes are deformities in your second, third, or fourth toe that cause your toe to remain bent, resembling a hammer. Because hammertoes can cause pain and discomfort, the team of leading podiatrists at Hoosier Foot & Ankle can help you find relief. The team has five locations throughout the Greater Indianapolis area, which makes it convenient for you to get the hammertoe treatment you need today. Schedule your hammertoe evaluation by clicking on the online scheduler, or by calling your closest clinic.

Hammer Toe Q & A

What causes hammertoes?

Hammertoes develop when there is an imbalance in muscles that support your toe joints. Your muscles work in pairs. So if one muscle is bent all the time, the other muscle can’t stretch out and over time, your toe gets stuck in that position.

In many cases, hammertoes develop over time by wearing poorly fitting shoes. Women struggle with hammertoes more often than men, usually due to wearing pointy-toed or high-heeled shoes. In some cases, though, you might be more likely to develop hammertoes because of:

  • A family history of hammertoes
  • Individual foot shape
  • Toe injury or trauma

It isn’t always known what causes hammertoes or why some men and women develop them more frequently.

Do hammertoes cause pain?

Sometimes, yes. When hammertoes first develop, they’re flexible, meaning you can move them at the joint. With repeated stress and being forced into the same position, hammertoes can eventually stiffen and go rigid. This is generally when men and women start to feel pain or discomfort.

Typically the biggest issues with hammertoes, though, are corns and calluses. Because your hammertoes start rubbing the insides of your shoes in abnormal places, you can develop corns across the top of your hammertoes, or calluses along the bottom of them.

While not generally an initial concern, corns and calluses can cause so much pain and discomfort, they start affecting your gait when you walk. Over time, this can lead to secondary issues, like hip or lower back pain.

How are hammertoes treated?

Treating hammertoes begins with conservative solutions to minimize discomfort and to allow any corns or calluses to heal. Your hammertoe treatment plan at Hoosier Foot & Ankle may include:

  • Custom orthotic inserts
  • Corn or callus pads
  • Specialized toe exercises

If your condition worsens or if you’re just not seeing improvement, you might need surgery. Hammertoe surgery involves releasing the tendon that’s keeping your toe stuck in position, or removing a small fragment of bone. With a team of expert surgical podiatrists on staff at Hoosier Foot & Ankle, you can feel confident that you’re going to get the care you need.

Book your hammertoe evaluation and get started on treatment today at Hoosier Foot & Ankle. Schedule either online or over the phone.

Conditions & Treatments