What Are Flexible Hammer Toes (adult “curled” toes)?

A Hammer Toe is a toe that’s bent or curled downward instead of pointing forward, usually due to tight tendons. The tight tendon pulls the toe downward or sideways underneath the toe next to it. Hammer Toes only occur with the four smaller toes, not the big toe.
A Hammer Toe can cause rubbing and irritation on the top of the bent toe. Women tend to have more painful Hammer Toes than men because of the shoes they wear.
Hammer Toes can be very dangerous for diabetics, as the irritation can lead to ulceration, infection, and if untreated, possible amputation.
There are two types of Hammer Toes:
  • Flexible Hammer Toes (adult curled toes): If the toe can be moved at the joint, it’s called a “flexible” hammertoe. These can be easily fixed in Dr. Sciortino’s office without hospitalization or downtime from work.
  • Rigid Hammer Toes: If the toe can’t be moved it’s called a “rigid” Hammer Toe. It usually means that surgery is needed.

curly toes

What Are the Symptoms of Flexible Hammer Toes?


Flexible Hammer Toe symptoms often include:
  • Pressure that causes sores or blisters
  • Trouble wearing certain shoes
  • Toenails that flatten or thicken
  • Pain or discomfort caused by certain activities

Flexible Hammer Toes may develop through certain activities that cause excessive pressure underneath your second and third toes at the ball of your foot. The pressure makes your tendons tighten, especially when the big toe doesn’t support its share of the weight. As the joints at the roots of your toes swell and become sore, your toes start to curl.


Simple, Painless Treatment for Flexible Hammer Toes

Dr. Sciortino can treat Flexible Hammer Toes in his office quickly with a very simple one stitch, painless procedure. There is virtually no recovery time, so no downtime from work or activity.
After the procedure is complete, Dr. Sciortino may advise the use of an arch support, a change in shoe gear, or simple cushioning to ensure continued, pain-free activity.

Contact Us


Dr. Sciortino can treat your flexible Hammer Toe (curled toe) in-office, quickly and painlessly. Just give us a call.