The small toes are susceptible to varying degrees of abnormal bending at the joints. Where the bend occurs determines the name of the deformity. Toe deformities are largely thought to be related to wearing shoes since in the few remaining cultures in the world where shoes are shunned, toe deformities like hammertoes, mallet toes and claw toes are not seen.
3 toe deformities that can affect the small toes include the following:
- Claw foot—When your toes bend upward at the first joint, and downward at the next two joints, they are called claw toes, and since the condition often affects all four of the smaller toes at once, your foot takes on the appearance of a claw
- Hammertoes—A hammertoe bends downward at the middle joint. This condition affects the three middle toes.
- Mallet toes—When a toe bends at the joint closest to the tip it is referred to as a mallet toe.
When a toe is abnormally bent, it often presses against the inside of your shoes and the pressure can cause skin problems like blisters, corns, and calluses to develop.
If your toe deformity is in the early stages and is still flexible, it can often be treated with physical therapy, properly fitted shoes, night splints, and custom orthotic inserts.
If you are experiencing problems with toe deformities, seek the help of your foot doctor. At Family Foot & Ankle Clinic, Dr. Stephen Markantone treats a wide variety of foot and ankle conditions including sports injuries, diabetic foot issues, pediatric foot conditions, toe and foot deformities, fungal infections, and heel problems. Equipped with the most advanced technologies and a dedicated staff, Family Foot & Ankle Clinic provides individualized and high-quality care for patients in the North Versailles and Delmont, PA areas. Contact our North Versailles office at 412-824-9370 or our Delmont office at 724-733-3338 to schedule an appointment.