Now that you have decided to seek treatment, you will visit your surgical podiatrist or foot-and-ankle specialized orthopedic surgeon. He or she will best be able to examine your toes and choose the best treatment options for you. You can find a list of local doctors who specialize in this surgery by clicking the Find a Physician link to the right.
At your first office visit, your doctor will determine the underlying cause of your hammertoe condition. He or she may do this by:
- Assessing the frequency and intensity of the pain associated with your hammertoes
- Examining how far and how smoothly the affected joint moves
- Watching how your feet rotate and flatten as you walk
- X-raying to check for bone problems or to rule out other causes of pain and swelling.
- Conducting blood tests or arthrocentesis (removal of fluid from a joint to test for existing problems such as gout, rheumatoid arthritis, or joint infection.)
With this information, your surgeon will ask about your goals for treatment, and help guide you in determining the best treatment options specifically for you.