Surgery for problems of the small toes aims to correct the deformity and prevent it from interfering with your daily activities if simple measures haven’t been successful.
The lesser toes can develop a number of abnormal appearances and positions including: hammer toe, mallet toe, claw toe and curly toe. Deformed small toes tend to rub on your shoes and may cause: small toe pain, metatarsalgia (pain in the ball of your foot), the skin of your toes to rub together and become raw and, difficulty finding well-fitting shoes.
Small toe problems usually happen when the pressures on the toe are stronger than their joints can resist. This can be because:
• the joints are weak - injury or arthritis may cause the muscles that control the small toes to become unbalanced so that one set pulls harder than the others, causing the toe to bend.
• strong pressure – most often from shoes that press on the tip of your small toes as the shoe is tight or it has a high heel that tends to force your toes into the tip of your shoe. Pressure may also result from the toe (usually the second toe) being naturally longer than the others.
Problems with the small toes are often seen in people with a bunion and they may additionally suffer from bunion pain.
There are a number of different foot operations. The type of foot surgery will depend on the lesser toe problem. You will be given a local or general anaesthetic based on the surgical procedure being performed. Often surgery can be carried out using minor procedures.
Your foot surgeon may:
• release or lengthen your tendons
• return joints back to their original position
• remove a small piece of bone or tip of the toe
• realign your toe bone
• change the shape of a bone.
Your toes may be fixed in place using removable wires or tiny screws.
Fusion may be required for more severe deformities when your surgeon will remove cartilage from the end of the toe bones in the middle joint. This is then held with a pin so that the bones can fuse together.
Foot surgery for problems of small toes aims to resolve the deformity and, reduce pain in your small toe joint and in the ball of your foot.
Straighter toes should also fit more comfortably in a normal shoe.
Most operations for the lesser toes are successful but as with any surgery complications can occur. There is a risk of infection, damage to the nerve or blood vessels to the toe, bone healing problems, severe pain, loss of movement in your toes and, recurrence of the deformity.
If you decide to pay for your treatment, Ramsay offer an all-inclusive Total Care package, where a single one-off payment at a pre-agreed price, delivering direct access to all the treatment you need for complete reassurance. You can also spread the cost of your treatment with finance options available.
A surgery for problems of the small toes may be covered by your medical insurance policy. We advise you to check directly with your insurance provider and get written confirmation before commencing treatment.
You should follow the advice of your healthcare team. You may need to wear special stockings postoperatively. You should keep your leg raised most of the time during the first week to reduce swelling. Thereafter you may become more active. Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible.
After a few weeks, if you have pins or wires in your toes, your foot surgeon will usually remove them in the clinic.
It can take six weeks or longer before the swelling has gone down enough for you to wear a normal soft shoe. Make sure it is comfortable and has enough room for your toes.
The swelling often takes up to six months to go down completely.
Ramsay Health Care hospitals offer high quality surgical care for problems of the small toes. Our foot surgeons and supporting care teams regularly see patients with these foot complications and understand the pain and discomfort they can bring.
We aim to offer the best treatment option for your foot problem. If surgery is required you can rest assured you’re in safe and experienced hands with excellent aftercare.
In addition to this issue we can treat other foot conditions including bunions and flat feet.
Mr Robert Boyd
Mr Robert Boyd is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon in Wiltshire specialising in Foot and Ankle.Read more
Mr David Cox
Mr David Cox is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at New Hall Hospital in Salisbury, Wiltshire who specialises in hip, knee and shoulder surgery. He has undertaken many thousands of hip and knee replacements and is able to undertake patient specific knee replacements. These bespoke replacements use 3D imaging to tailor the replacement to the individual. He also has a special interest in the management of sports injuries, utilising minimal access surgical techniques when indicated.Read more
Mr Ahmed Elmorsy
Mr A Elmorsy is a Consultant Orthopaedic Shoulder Surgeon at New Hall Hospital, in Salisbury, Wiltshire. He specialises in all types of shoulder surgery.Read more
Mr Nick Evans
Mr Nick Evans is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon in WiltshireRead more
Mr Neal Jacobs
Mr Neal Jacobs is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon in Salisbury,Wiltshire who specialises in foot and ankle surgery.Read more
Mr Ivar Kask
Mr Ivar Kask is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at new Hall Hospital in Salisbury, Wiltshire who specialises in lower limb surgery.Read more
Mr Erman Melikyan
Mr Erman Melikyan is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon who specialises in hand and wrist surgery.Read more
Mr Phil Pettit
Mr Phil Pettit is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at New Hall Hospital in Salisbury, Wiltshire who specialises in hip and knee surgery.Read more
Mr Makarahalli Prabhakar
Mr Makarahalli Prabhakar is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon in WiltshireRead more
Mr Jonathan Quayle
Mr Jonathan Quayle is a Consultant Trauma and Orthopaedics Surgeon (Hip and Knee) in WiltshireRead more
Mr Peter Rauh
Mr Peter Rauh is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at New Hall Hospital who specialises in foot, ankle and knee surgery.Read more
Mr Sridhar Sampalli
Mr Sridhar Sampalli is an Associate Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon at New Hall Hospital in Salisbury, who specialises in hip and knee surgeryRead more
Mr Jeremy Southgate
Mr Jeremy Southgate is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, specialising in Hand, Wrist and Elbow Surgery in WiltshireRead more
Mr Leonidas Vachtsevanos
Mr Leo Vachtsevanos is a Consultant Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon in Salisbury, specialising in joint preserving knee operations and hip and knee replacement surgery.Read more
Mr Ivor Vanhegan
Mr Ivor Vanhegan is a Consultant Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgeon in Salisbury who specialises in Hip & Knee surgeryRead more
Mr Stephen Veitch
Mr Stephen Veitch is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon in Salisbury, Wiltshire who specialises in hip and knee surgery.Read more
Mr Rakesh Choudhary
Mr Rakesh Choudhary is a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at the New Hall Hospital, Salisbury and the Cherwell Hospital, Banbury who specialises in hip and knee surgery.Read more
Hand and wrist surgery is broad ranging orthopaedic specialty. It is normally performed by an orthopaedic consultant with a special interest in hands and wrists to treat several injuries or damages
Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that allows your surgeon to see inside your hip using a camera inserted through small cuts in the skin. It is used to examine, diagnose and treat problems that are causing pain and/or restricted movement in your hip.
Total shoulder replacement is shoulder surgery to relieve pain, restore motion, and increase strength and function in your shoulder.