Claw Toe

The claw toe deformity gains its name from the appearance of the curled under toe that resembles a claw. Claw toe is primarily caused by wearing shoes that are too tight and force the toe into an unnatural position. Overtime, a muscle imbalance causes the ligaments and tendons to tighten into the claw shape. This deformity affects the middle and end joints in the toe. Because of this it cannot occur in the big toe.

Claw toe can lead to pressure and pain especially at the top part of the toe. The claw appearance – and pain – will get worse overtime if left untreated. Eventually the deformity will become permanent. When detected in its early stages, the original shape can be regained.

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  • Claw like appearance of the toe 
  • Development of corns, calluses, or ulcers on areas of your toes where there is shoe friction
  • Pain
  • Decreased mobility
  • Wearing short, narrow shoes that are too tight
  • Nerve damage that weakens foot muscles, leading to imbalance
  • High arched feet
  • Conditions including Rheumatoid arthritis, Cerebral Palsy, Diabetes, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, and stroke
  • Neurological conditions
  • High arches
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Neuromuscular disorders
  • Physical examination to evaluate condition.
  • X-ray to evaluate potential damage to the bone
  • Wearing properly fitting shoes that allow all toes to extend to their natural state
  • Splints to help keep toes in the correct position
  • Home exercises to stretch and strengthen the foot and toes
  • Surgical repair can be performed to lengthen and reroute the affected toes. Additionally, a surgical bone shortening can provide remedy
Claw Toe Specialties
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