Hammertoe and mallet toe symptoms
An unnatural bend develops in the joints of a toe or several toes with hammertoe and mallet toe. As a result, the person may experience pain while moving the affected toe(s) or difficulties moving the affected joints as symptoms of hammertoe. In addition, calluses and corns can develop where the abnormal bend rubs on the inside surface of the shoe.
When to see a doctor
You should visit your healthcare provider if an abnormality in your foot or toes causes pain that doesn’t go away. In addition, if you have diabetes or a condition that affects your circulation and notice any open areas, redness, or signs of irritation, see your doctor.
Hammertoe and mallet toe diagnosis
A hammertoe or mallet toe can be diagnosed by a healthcare professional examining the foot. The doctor may also order x-rays to thoroughly evaluate the joints and bones in the toes and feet.
Complications of hammertoe and mallet toe
When a hammertoe or mallet toe first starts to develop, it may lie flat when a person is not wearing tight shoes or high heels. Over time, the tendons may shorten and become stiff and tight. It can cause permanent stiffness, and the toe eventually is no longer able to lie flat. The shoes rub on the toe(s) where they are bent upward, and painful calluses or corns develop.