Hammer Toe

hammer toe

Experience expert care for hammer toe with Dr. Alan J. Rosen, located in New York City.

With the right treatment, hammertoe shouldn’t inhibit your ability to walk or exercise. An experienced podiatrist, Dr. Alan J. Rosen has been treating hammertoe in the Upper East Side neighborhood of New York City for many years. Dr. Rosen offers a range of customizable treatment plans and takes the time to determine what works best for you. Call his office or use the online booking feature to schedule your consultation today.

Hammer Toe FAQ

Hammertoe is the term for a deformity of the second, third, or fourth toes. A hammertoe can become immobile if it’s left untreated. The affected toe usually curves and bends at the middle joint and resembles the shape of a hammer.

Hammertoe increases your risk of developing corns and calluses. Your distorted toe can become painful, affect your walking, or prevent your shoes from fitting properly.

There are a number of possible causes for hammertoe, including:

  • Wearing shoes that compress your toes
  • Injury or trauma of the toe bones
  • Abnormal balance of the toe muscles

Certain factors can heighten your risk for developing hammertoe, such as:

  • Natural foot structure, e.g., a second toe that’s longer than your big toe
  • Chronic diseases, such as arthritis and diabetes 
  • Being female (women are more prone to develop hammertoe than men)
  • Genetics
  • Aging

Dr. Rosen usually diagnoses hammertoe with a physical examination and X-rays. After your evaluation and diagnosis, Dr. Rosen might recommend a number of treatments, such as:

  • Medications to reduce inflammation and pain
  • Specialized exercises to strengthen the toe muscles
  • Foot products to enhance comfort, like inner soles and aperture pads
  • Surgery to correct bone structure and restricted tendons

Dr. Rosen might recommend multiple treatment methods to give you the best results. Afterward, it’s best to get plenty of rest and choose comfortable shoes that fit your feet properly. 

In more severe cases of hammertoe, surgery may be necessary as a permanent, effective solution. To perform the surgery, Dr. Rosen makes a small incision at the top of your joint and removes the excess bone from your toe. He might also release the tendon that’s inhibiting your toe from laying flat. If necessary, he may place screws to stabilize and maintain the surgical correction permanently. The surgery requires only local anesthesia, and the recovery period typically takes approximately 2-4 months. Meantime, you may use surgical shoes to help you walk around.

If you’d like to learn more about the treatment options for hammertoe, call Dr. Rosen and his compassionate, skilled staff to schedule a personal consultation, or use their convenient online booking tool.