Hammer Toe Specialist

InStride Family Foot Care

Podiatrists & Foot and Ankle Specialists located in Concord, NC & Charlotte, NC

If high-heeled shoes are a regular part of your wardrobe, you may be increasing your risk for painful hammertoes. At InStride Family Foot Care, with offices in Concord and Charlotte, North Carolina, the experienced team of podiatrists offers customized treatments, including minimally invasive outpatient surgery, to correct abnormally bent toes. If you have pain or difficulties walking due to hammertoes, schedule a consultation at the InStride office nearest you online or by phone.

Hammer Toe Q&A

What are hammertoes?

Hammertoes are painful toe deformities that most often occur on your second, third, or fourth toe. Many people develop hammertoes due to structural defects in their foot or because of an abnormal gait.

You can also increase your risk for hammertoes if you frequently wear shoes that are too tight or don’t otherwise fit properly. High heels and narrow shoes are a common cause of hammertoes because they keep the foot bent for long periods of time, which causes the muscles in the toes to shorten and the toes to bend abnormally.

Hammertoes may also be the result of:

  • Heredity
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis


Direct trauma to your toes during a fall or other type of accident can also lead to hammertoe-related deformities.

As your condition worsens, the affected toes can become increasingly painful. You may find it difficult to walk or wear shoes because of your bent toes.You may also develop calluses and corns on the areas where the bent toes rub against your other toes.

How is hammertoe treated?

The InStride Family Foot Care team offers comprehensive diagnostic evaluations to assess the severity of your hammertoe condition. Once they confirm the deformity is the result of hammertoe and not another underlying issue, your provider creates a customized care plan that focuses on pain relief and preventing a worsening of your condition.

If the hammertoe bend is in the early stages and your toes are still flexible, your InStride Family Foot Care provider may recommend customized orthotic devices that support your toes and gradually help to realign them into position.

Will I need surgery for hammertoes?

If your toes are already rigid and not able to be treated with orthotics, your provider may recommend surgery. During an outpatient surgical procedure, your provider can access the affected toes through a minimal incision to relieve pressure on the tendons.

In some cases, surgery also involves a realignment of the tendons and bones. Your surgeon may insert pins to keep the structures in place or may need to remove small pieces of bone to effectively straighten your toes.

Following surgery for hammertoes, your podiatrist provides instructions to help you heal properly. You may also need to have physical therapy or perform at-home exercises to strengthen your toes. It’s important that you follow your podiatrist’s recommendations for well-fitting shoes and other preventive measures to prevent future hammertoes.

Schedule an evaluation of hammertoes today at the InStride Family Foot Care nearest you by calling the office or by requesting an appointment online now.