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281-444-6300

Spring Clinic

2616 Farm to Market 2920,
Spring, TX, 77388

Downtown Houston Clinic

6550 Fannin Street
Houston, TX, 77030

Toe Shortening Surgery

Long Toe Pain

All patients are looking for the top or best foot surgeons to evaluate their toe problem or perform their foot surgery. We believe that giving different treatment options (non surgical treatment) is a top priority.

At our practice our patients always have three choices:

  1. No Treatment (Consultation, Second Opinion, Additional Testing)
  2. Conservative Treatment (Medication, Injection Therapy, Custom Orthotics)
  3. Surgical Treatment (In Office, Out Patient – Local / Sedation / General Anesthesia)

Each patient is different and conservative treatment vs. surgical correction both differ for the particular type of toe pain/problem, age and lifestyle.  The right treatment must also meet the patient’s expectations in regard to resolution of their problem(s) and future functionality.  And if conservative treatment fails, the option to not have surgery is as important as the surgery chosen by your surgeon.  Of course surgical training is very important, and continuing medical education on the latest medical advancements is important as well, but it’s the careful planning before and after surgical treatment that produces the best outcome.

This patient had both a bunionectomy and second toe shortening on the right foot (8 weeks after surgery and returned for her left foot surgery to perform the same procedures. Toe shortening can be achieved surgically, easing pain and discomfort, enhancing symmetry and balance while improving the fit of shoes and overall cosmetic appearance of the foot.

One of the most common genetic toe problems is the long toe. The long second toe is the most common with most patient complaints about the toenail pain and top of the toe pain from hitting the end of the shoe and top, inside of the shoe respectively. This is often referred to by a range of terms including: hammertoe, mallet toe and claw toe.

a bunionectomy and second toe shortening on the right foot

Toe Shortening Surgery Warning:  Graphic video content

SURGICAL TREATMENT / COSMETIC OUTCOME

In an out patient surgery center or the clinic under sedation and local anesthesia, the procedure (Toe shortening, toe lengthening, mallet toe correction, claw toe correction) may or may not require an internal pin. Occasionally an additional procedure may be necessary (eg. spur removal), but the time in the operating room is usually 20 minutes per toe. If indicated, the skin lesion or corn is removed during the procedure or it will naturally fall off 3 to 4 weeks after the surgery.

The incision is minimal (0.5cm to 1.5cm) and sutures are removed at 2 weeks. Weight bearing in a post operative shoe or open toe sandal is allowed after 48 to 72 hours of rest and elevation. Sports, exercise, and different types of shoes (dress, work, running, etc.) can be worn as soon as 3 weeks depending upon patient preference, swelling, incision sensitivity.

TREATMENT – Conservative Care

Shoes:

A larger, softer shoe can relieve the direct or indirect pressure. Make sure that the shoe has enough room at the end about the width of your thumb and that the toe box (front of the shoe) is high enough to allow your toes to move freely.

Padding:

There are an array of over the counter pads that can be placed between the toes or behind the painful nail edge to relieve pain

Arch Support:

Temporary arch supports or custom molded orthotics can give support and minimize the gripping or clawing effect of toes from a flattening archway. These devices are good solution for long term treatment with or without surgical intervention.

RELATED ARTICLES AND INFORMATION

Medscape Logo

Article: Mallet Toe
CLICK HERE FOR FULL ARTICLE

Mayo Clinic Logo

MAYO CLINIC Article: Mallet toe foot deformities
CLICK HERE FOR FULL ARTICLE

TheraFit Logo

How to manage pain in your longer second toe
CLICK HERE FOR FULL ARTICLE

These are links to more information on the subject, not intended to imply an endorsement.

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