Hammer Toes

Toe deformities are very common and increase in frequency in older age groups.


Are shoes a common cause of toe deformities?
Nowadays it is less common to see children's feet squeezed into shoes which are too tight and in general shoe fit is better. As a result footwear is less likely to be the cause of toe deformity. Footwear is however often important for patients who have toe deformities as they may require a shoe with greater depth to accommodate the toe(s).

What problems develop as a result of toe deformities?
The most common problem is that the misshapen toes lead to rubbing of the prominent toe joints on shoes. This can cause the development of painful blisters, corns and callus. If left untreated these areas will eventually ulcerate leading to the risk of infection. Where there is pressure to the nail bed as a result of the toe deformity, long-term damage can occur to the nail resulting in permanent nail changes.

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