Hammertoe/Claw Toe Surgery (Extensor/Flexor Tenotomy)
Claw Toes/Hammer Toes, form because of a muscle imbalance. It is not uncommon for calluses to form at the tip of the toes and bottom of the foot with this condition. Initially, the toe will be flexible and you will be able to straighten it. Over time it may become a permanent, rigid deformity. It is important to treat the toes while they are still flexible.
We will often recommend claw toe/hammer toe surgery for patients who have a flexible deformity. The procedure is safe, minimally invasive and has a very good success rate.
The procedure involves first injecting a local anesthetic into the area surrounding the toe(s), cutting the tendon(s) of the affected toe(s), and then closing the incision. The procedure itself takes about 30 minutes to perform.
Q: Is hammer toe/claw toe surgery painful?
A: The chiropodist uses a local anesthetic to numb the area, and does not proceed until completely sure that the area around the toe is numb. You should not feel anything during the procedure itself. The only pain that you would feel would be during the initial anesthetic injection. Keep in mind that we use the smallest needle available to minimize any pain during the injection.
Q: Will my foot be in pain after the hammer toe/claw toe surgery?
A: This will affect each person differently. Generally, after the local anesthetic wears off, the surgical area will be tender for 1-2 weeks. Over-the-counter Advil or Tylenol is typically all you would need.
Q: Will I be able to do every day, normal activities right after the claw toe/hammer toe surgery? Will I have to take time off of work?
A: We recommend that you take it easy for the first week, but it doesn't prevent you from doing everyday activities. Most patients are able to return to work the next day.
Q: How long does it take to completely heal after hammer toe/claw toe surgery?
A: Most patients heal completely in about 2-3 weeks, but this is different for everyone. The chiropodist will bring you back a few days after the procedure to check on your foot and clean up the area, and then as needed to ensure that you are healing well.
Q: Will the claw toe/hammer toe ever come back?
A: Claw toes/hammer toes develop from muscle imbalance and biomechanical instability. There is a small chance they may recur, but if the underlying muscle imbalance and biomechanical instability is addressed, it will not return. The chiropodist will discuss this during your visit.
Q: How do I care for my foot after claw toe/hammer toe surgery?
A: Your foot will be splinted and dressed after your surgery which you will keep on for a few days after which you will come back to the clinic for a follow-up appointment for resplinting and redressing. You will be taught how to splint your toe(s) for the next few weeks.
Q: How much does it cost for claw toe/hammer toe surgery?
A: We offer claw toe/hammer toe surgery as a case fee (includes the procedure and all follow-up visits). Please contact our office via phone or email to find out pricing.
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