Hammertoe in Old Greenwich, CT

Up to 3% of Americans 21 and older have a hammertoe. Though common, without treatment, the condition worsens, affecting your mobility. At Prestige Podiatry Care in Old Greenwich, Connecticut, board-certified podiatrist Shivani Panchal, DPM, specializes in diagnosing and treating hammertoes using a safe and minimally invasive approach. Call Prestige Podiatry Care to schedule a hammertoe consultation, or book your appointment online today. 

Hammertoe Q&A

If I can’t straighten my toe, do I have a hammertoe?

It’s likely. A hammertoe occurs when there’s an imbalance between the muscles and tendons that hold your toe flat, causing it to stay bent in a claw (or hammerhead-like) position. Without treatment, the joint locks in position, affecting your mobility and increasing the risk of other problems, like corns, calluses, and blisters. 

What are the symptoms of a hammertoe?

Hammertoe symptoms include the following:

  • Swelling at the joint
  • Redness, inflammation, or a burning sensation
  • Pain in the ball of your foot
  • Pain at the top of your toe
  • Difficulty straightening the affected toe

Many people with hammertoes have blisters and calluses due to the affected joint rubbing against their socks or shoes.

Should I see a podiatrist about a hammertoe?

Yes. If you have any symptoms of a hammertoe, make an appointment at Prestige Podiatry Care right away. That’s particularly true if you notice the affected joint getting stiff or being hard to move. Hammertoes get progressively worse over time, so it’s crucial you take action as soon as possible. 

How does a podiatrist diagnose a hammertoe?

Dr. Panchal reviews your medical records, asks about your symptoms, and examines your toe and toe joint. She carefully moves your foot and toes to see how your joints react and gently presses on your affected toe to identify sensitive areas. Next, Dr. Panchal orders X-rays to get a closer look at your joint and the surrounding bones.

If you have diabetes, Dr. Panchal completes several other tests to see if nerve damage is responsible for the imbalance. 

How does a podiatrist treat a hammertoe?

At Prestige Podiatry Care, Dr. Panchal often treats hammertoes using a conservative and noninvasive approach. She might suggest:

  • Taping your toes
  • Custom orthotics to improve foot function
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Corticosteroid injections
  • Insulating padding to reduce pressure on the affected toe

If your symptoms continue or worsen, Dr. Panchal suggests Remy laser treatment. The Remy laser uses targeted light energy to relieve inflammation and accelerate tissue repair and cell growth. It’s pain-free and provides near-instant results.

For severe cases of hammertoe, Dr. Panchal may recommend minimally invasive surgery.

Is there any way to prevent a hammertoe?

To prevent a hammertoe, take good care of your feet. Dr. Panchal recommends wearing comfortable shoes that provide plenty of room for your toes and making time to stretch and strengthen your toe muscles. Extending and curling your toes regularly can help reduce the risk of muscle imbalance.

Call Prestige Podiatry Care to schedule treatment for a hammertoe, or book your appointment online today.