What are a Hammer, Claw and Mallet Toe?
The lesser toes on our feet have two joints and our big toe has only one joint. Some people have toes that are bent at various points, which is how each deformity is identified. The reasons toes become contracted are due to various factors such as shoes, genetics, injuries, etc. Deformities can be flexible or rigid and may be painful, but not always. Three common toe deformities include:
A mallet toe, which occurs when the toe is contracted at the furthest joint while the rest of the toe is straight,
Hammertoe, when the closer of the two toe joints are bent with the end of the toe relatively straight, and claw toe, when both joints in the toe are bent, significantly shortening its length. Claw toes are usually the most symptomatic, often causing pain and calluses. Corns also develop on the skin over any bony prominence.