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Hammer,Claw,and Mallet Toes

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The symptoms of hammer, claw, and mallet toes are deformity of the toe, pain, and difficulty fitting into shoes. These toe joint deformities are usually easy to see by looking at the toes and comparing them to pictures of these deformities.

See pictures of hammer, claw, and mallet toes .

Hammer and mallet toes usually occur in your longest toe. This is usually your second toe, next to the big toe. Claw toe usually affects the lesser toes (those other than the big toe) at the same time. Mallet and claw toes may cause deformed toenails.

Hammer, claw, and mallet toes usually develop slowly, over years.

Pain, sores, calluses, or corns may occur at the:

  • Upper part of the toe, where the raised joint rubs against your footwear.
  • Tip of the toe. This almost always occurs with mallet or claw toes, and often occurs with hammer toe.
  • Ball of the foot, which is the area of the bottom of the foot, between the arch and the toes.

Sores can become infected and lead to cellulitis or osteomyelitis, especially if you have diabetes or peripheral arterial disease.


WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: June 29, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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