Hammertoe Symptoms :
Visible deformity is the most obvious Hammertoe Symptoms of these conditions. This appearance is usually accompanied by the following:
- Pain and discomfort.
- Increasingly ill-fitting footwear. Many patients eventually have a difficult time finding shoes which are comfortable enough for daily wear.
- Excessive friction. This causes secondary symptoms such as corns and calluses.
- An abnormal gait and balance difficulties. Since the toes are locked into a fixed position they don’t function normally while walking or running. This can affect balance as well
Two joints in your toe give it the ability to bend in the center and bottom. When the middle joint flexes or bends downward, a hammer toe develops.
This is frequently brought on by:
a bunion, which is when your big toe turns inward toward your second toe, arthritis, an exceptionally high foot arch, wearing shoes that don’t fit properly, strained ligaments or tendons in the foot, and trauma to the toes.
How are Hammertoe conditions diagnosed?
Your podiatrist will take a medical history and perform a physical exam. This is often enough to make a diagnosis, especially in advanced cases. Some version of the following questions will be asked:
- When did this problem start? Has it gotten worse with time?
- What kind of shoes do you wear on a daily basis? At work? At home?
- Do your feet hurt? If so, is the pain limited to the toes or does it affect other areas of the foot?
- Which activities cause you the most pain?
- Are you on your feet a lot? How much of your day is spent walking or running?
- Do you have a history of other foot problems? Have you ever had severe trauma to the affected foot?
- Are you diabetic? Do you have poor circulation or joint conditions such as arthritis, or have you ever had a stroke?
After taking a medical history your doctor will examine the toes to determine how much motion they have and how badly the joints are deformed. If some motion is still possible there’s a chance the problem can be fixed without surgery. Avoiding surgery is always a primary goal, even among podiatric surgeons.
Hammertoe Surgery Preoperative Studies
If surgery is the only option you’ll need additional tests before proceeding. These include but aren’t limited to:
- An X-ray study. This will let your surgeon see exactly what condition the joints are in and which procedure will help the most.
- A circulation study. This will usually include a Doppler ultrasound which can visualize blood flow in real time. If a patient’s circulation is impaired surgery may not be possible.
- Nerve conduction studies. As with circulation, nerve issues may make the surgery impossible. If there’s any doubt the patient will be sent to a neurologist for evaluation.
Avoid Narrow Shoes
Wearing sensible shoes is a good place to start if you don’t want to undergo hammer toe surgery. There are obviously many fashionable shoes available for both men and women. Men’s shoes are cozy to wear, but women’s shoes frequently lack functionality. Women’s shoes often have relatively narrow widths to give them a sleek appearance. For fashion, women force their feet into tiny, uncomfortable shoes. To encourage healthy feet, keep in mind that you must always wear shoes with appropriate arch support and a wide toe box. Always start out wearing appropriate shoes if you have hammer toes. You can speak with a reputable podiatrist if you’re unsure how to choose shoes.
Get your feet moving
In order to keep your feet and toes flexible and strong, you should stretch them. Even the muscles in your foot tend to deteriorate with age. As a result, there is an imbalance and misalignment, which results in issues like hammertoe.
know the medical history of your family
Take action to prevent and treat any conditions you may be at risk for, such as diabetes or arthritis. If you are aware that you have diabetes, keep an eye out for any foot or toe issues.
Take care of your toe if it has been damaged in any manner. If you experience foot discomfort, toe pain, or difficulties walking, consult a podiatrist straight soon. Even a simple toe stub might result in excruciating hammertoe.
The ideal moment to shop
The greatest time to go shoe shopping is later in the day because your feet naturally enlarge over the day. Make sure your shoes will fit comfortably during the day. Additionally, you should refrain from purchasing tight shoes in the hopes that they will loosen up. They ought to feel at ease right away.