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Possible Causes of Hammertoe

The medical condition that is known as hammertoe may be caused by a muscle imbalance. This can gradually develop as a result of wearing shoes that do not have ample room for the toes to move freely in. Additionally, it may occur as a result of genetic factors, or from high arches or arthritis. This ailment typically affects the second or third toe. Corns and calluses can form on top of the affected toes, which may cause pain and discomfort. Some patients may find mild relief if a cushioned bandage is worn over the toes, as this may help to avoid friction while wearing shoes. In severe cases of hammertoe, surgery may be necessary to perform. This may be helpful in permanently straightening the toes. If you have hammertoe, please schedule a consultation with a podiatrist who can offer you treatment options that are correct for you.

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Jeffrey Wachtel of Wachtel Family Foot Care. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.


Hammertoe is a foot deformity that occurs due to an imbalance in the muscles, tendons, or ligaments that normally hold the toe straight. It can be caused by the type of shoes you wear, your foot structure, trauma, and certain disease processes.


  • Painful and/or difficult toe movement
  • Swelling
  • Joint stiffness
  • Calluses/Corns
  • Physical deformity

Risk Factors

  • Age – The risk of hammertoe increases with age
  • Sex – Women are more likely to have hammertoe compared to men
  • Toe Length – You are more likely to develop hammertoe if your second toe is longer than your big toe
  • Certain Diseases – Arthritis and diabetes may make you more likely to develop hammertoe


If you have hammertoe, you should change into a more comfortable shoe that provides enough room for your toes. Exercises such as picking up marbles may strengthen and stretch your toe muscles. Nevertheless, it is important to seek assistance from a podiatrist in order to determine the severity of your hammertoe and see which treatment option will work best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Lansdale, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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About Jeffrey Wachtel

Jeffrey Wachtel has written 577 post in this blog.