A Hammertoe is a toe which is curved at one or more of its joints.
Many patients with hammertoes have NO symptoms at all and therefore do not need surgery. Some of these patients are warned to have surgery to avoid future problems. However, there may never be future problems. You should never be talked into having this surgery and should always get another opinion if that is what you are being told by the podiatrist.
Some hammertoes cause pain, typically from corns on top of the bent joint and rubbing inside the shoe. Surgery can usually correct this. Some patients only need a tendon cut. Other patients may need the joint removed or re-shaped. These surgeries are not complicated and should result in a straighter toe with no more pain. However, if performed improperly, the toe can become twisted and distorted or the toe may not touch the ground anymore.
Some surgeries to fix hammertoes require the use of a pin, a metallic rod that goes completely through the center of the bones of the toe. This is done to keep the small bones in place as the tissues heal. The patient must be told of the risk in using a pin and the risk if no pin is used. The patient should never come out of the surgery and be surprised by a pin coming out the end of their toe.
The Law Firm of Lawrence M. Karam, P.C., is not affiliated with Lance Ehrenberg, Esq., or any other law firm.