The lesser toes can develop deformities through life. This does not always have a clear cause but may be related to underlying joint disease/musculoskeletal disease such as arthritis, and may be contributed to by trauma or shoe wear.
Curled toes are termed ‘claw toes’ or ‘hammer toes’ depending on which joints in the toe are affected.
The deformities in these lesser toes can cause functional problems, often this is related to rubbing on shoes due to their prominence, they may also become a cosmetic problem.
As with other deformities, the management options can include altering shoe wear or activities, padding or cushioning, and in more severe cases surgery. Dr Ihsheish can make a thorough clinical and radiological assessment and discuss with you the most appropriate management.
Surgery often entails releasing and fusing the affected joints in a more optimal position (ie with the toe straight), they are often fixed in the new position with a variety of internal devices that Dr Ihsheish can discuss with you, some of these devices are removed a few weeks after the surgery, and some are left in place. In general you will be required to use crutches for 4-6 weeks after the surgery, with special shoe-wear on the affected foot.
Bunions are a type of outgrowth in a bone that results in a prominent lump. This commonly happens near the great toe of the foot. This may look unusual, but more importantly it can result in pressure symptoms when a patient puts on their shoes, or pain with prolonged standing or walking etc.
Their development may be contributed to by genetics, gender, shoe-wear, trauma, etc.
The medical term for this condition is Hallux Valgus.
Not all patients with a bunion require surgical correction. Initial treatment is aimed at alleviating any pain or pressure symptoms, this can be done with soft inserts/orthotics, adequate shoe-wear, activity modification, and simple pain killers.
Patients who experience significant dysfunction despite the above measures may benefit from surgery. Dr Ihsheish will make a clinical and radiological assessment and discuss surgery if necessary, which is aimed at removing the prominent part of the bone or underlying soft-tissue, the bone mal-alignment is corrected and fixed with internal devices. The surgery usually requires six weeks to get over, patients are allowed to walk with the aid of crutches and special shoes. Dr Ihsheish will also discuss with you other details, including risks of such surgery, and the expected recovery and outcome.