Get answers to your Foot and Ankle questions.
Mild hammer toe in children can be treated by manipulating and splinting the affected toe.
The following changes in footwear may help relieve symptoms:
A foot doctor can make foot devices called hammer toe regulators or straighteners for you, or you can buy them at the store.
Exercises may be helpful. You can try gentle stretching exercises if the toe is not already in a fixed position. PIcking up a towel with your toes can help stretch and straighten the small muscles in the foot.
For severe hammer toe, you will need an operation to straighten the joint.
Most of the time, you will go home on the same day as the surgery. The toe may still be stiff afterward, and it may be shorter.
If the condition is treated early, you can often avoid surgery. Treatment will reduce pain and walking difficulty.
If you have hammer toe, call for an appointment with your health care provider:
Krug RJ, Lee EH, Dugan S, Mashey K. Hammer toe. In: Frontera WR, Silver JK, Rizzo TD Jr., eds. Essentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier;2008:chap 82.
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