Hammer Toe Specialist

Tad Borland, DPM, MS -  - Podiatric Foot and Ankle Surgeon

Step Right Podiatry

Tad Borland, DPM, MS

Podiatric Foot and Ankle Surgeon located in Ambridge, PA

A hammertoe is a deformity that causes your toe to stick up and rub against the inside of your shoes, causing painful corns and calluses. With his expertise in minimally invasive surgical procedures, Tad Borland, DPM, MS, of Step Right Podiatry can correct your hammertoe and help you get relief from lingering discomfort. Book your hammertoe evaluation at this Ambridge, Pennsylvania, based podiatry clinic with the online scheduling feature or call the office directly.

Hammer Toe

What causes a hammertoe?

A hammertoe is a joint deformity that occurs in your middle toes, most commonly in your second toe. The issue often develops because of an imbalance in the muscles and connective tissues in your toe.

For instance, if your second toe is longer than your big toe, it may constantly get scrunched up in your shoes. Over time, the muscles and connective tissues that help your toe relax start getting stuck in that unnatural position.

Some of the most common causes and risk factors for hammertoes include:

  • Older age
  • Arthritis or diabetes
  • Toe injury or trauma
  • Frequently wearing snug-fitting shoes


You can even develop a similar condition in the joint that’s closest to your toenails. This condition, known as a mallet toe, has nearly identical causes and symptoms.

Do hammertoes cause symptoms?

Not always, although hammertoes can certainly become uncomfortable if you leave them untreated. In earlier stages, hammertoes are flexible and can feel achy and uncomfortable. As a hammertoe becomes more rigid to the point where you can no longer bend it, you may find that you have limited movement in the affected toe.

You may also find that you develop painful corns across the tops of your toes, or calluses along the bottoms of your hammertoes due to friction from your shoes. No matter how minor or how severe your hammertoe symptoms, visit with Dr. Borland at Step Right Podiatry to see what he can do to help.

How are hammertoes treated?

Treating your hammertoe generally begins with conservative therapies. While these treatments won’t correct your hammertoe, they’re known for providing relief from pain and inflammation. You may benefit from:

  • Custom orthotic inserts
  • Physical therapy or stretches
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Padding, splinting or taping
  • Footwear with more room in the toes


If you’re not getting relief, or if your hammertoe continues to worsen, Dr. Borland could suggest hammertoe surgery. This minimally invasive procedure realigns your toe joint into its natural position, releases stiff connective tissues, or removes damaged tissues or bone.

No matter which treatment solution is right for you, Dr. Borland helps you every step of the way to ensure your treatment plan is working.

Before living another day with hammertoe pain, book an evaluation at Step Right Podiatry. You can either request an appointment online or over the phone.