Hammer Toe Correction

Overview

Definition

Hammer toe occurs when there is a shortening of the tendon that controls toe movement. This causes the middle joint of the toe to be bent upward and the outer joint downwards. The misshapen toe resembles a hammer. A hammer toe correction is done to correct a toe deformity called a hammer toe .

Hammer toe
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Possible Complications

Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have the correction, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Excessive swelling, although the toe will normally be swollen for 4-8 weeks following surgery
  • Anesthesia-related problems
  • Recurrence of hammer toe
  • Nerve or blood vessel injury to the toe

Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Bleeding disorders
  • Poor circulation
  • Obesity

SymptomsandDiagnosis

Treatments

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

Edits to original content made by Denver Health.

RESOURCES

The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine http://www.sportsmed.org 

Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://orthoinfo.aaos.org 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Podiatric Medical Association http://www.podiatrycanada.org 

Nurses Entrepreneurial Foot Care Association of Canada http://www.nefca.ca 

References

Hammer toe. Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons website. Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00160. Updated September 2012. Accessed February 11, 2016.

6/2/2011 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance  http://www.dynamed.com : Mills E, Eyawo O, Lockhart I, Kelly S, Wu P, Ebbert JO. Smoking cessation reduces postoperative complications: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Med. 2011;124(2):144-154.e8.