What is Hammer toe?

What is Hammer toe?

A hammertoe is curled due to a bend in the middle joint of the toe. A hammer toe is usually caused by wearing ill-fitting shoes. It often affects the toe next to the big toe. The affected toe may be painful or hard to move and may develop corns or calluses. The hyperextension of the MTP joint and the flexion of the PIP joint make the PIP joint prominent dorsally.



  • Arthritis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis also can increase your risk. Arthritis in a toe joint can lead to hammertoe.
  • an unusually high foot arch

  • Wearing shoes that don’t fit properly
  • Shoes that are too tight in the toe box or have a high heel can force toes into a bent or flexed position. When the toes stay in this position a long time, the muscles that allow the toes to straighten out become tight and less able to work.
  • Tightened ligaments or tendons in the foot
  • Muscle imbalances that are unrelated to footwear
  • Pressure from a bunion, which is when your big toe points inward toward your second toe




Dr . P. Senthil Selvam, PhD
Professor & HOD, School of Physiotherapy, VISTAS, Chennai.

Dr .D. Hepzibah Rubella, MPT (Ortho)
Research Scholar, School of Physiotherapy, VISTAS, Chennai.

Vels Institute of Science, Technology & Advanced Studies (VISTAS)

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