Hi. I'm 45 year old black man and I was wondering what kind of bone disease I have.
I work as a night watchman in one bank in my town and during my night shift I must go around my bank at least 20 times by foot.
At the morning, or should I say-at noon, when I wake up, my feet are killing me.
I especially had pains located in my second toe and I have noticed that, wearing some tight shoes, it looked kind a funny.
I contacted my orthopedian and, after just one look at my foot, he set the definite diagnosis. I had developed some condition called afro American hammer toe.
What kind of disease this is and is there a cure beside the operation, which he suggested me?
I will tell you a couple of things about the condition doctor diagnosed you with.
A hammer toe is a deformity of the second, third or fourth toes. In this condition, the toe is bent at the middle joint, so that it look kind of like a hammer.
There is no proof why that is, but this condition is more frequent at the black men than at the white.
Hammer toe results from shoes that don't fit properly or a muscle imbalance, usually in combination with one or more other factors.
Ligaments and tendons that have tightened cause the toe's joints to curl downwards.
A higher heel forces the foot down and squishes the toes against the shoe, increasing the pressure and the bend in the toe.
But there is a solution for this. Conservative treatment starts with new shoes that have soft, roomy toe boxes.
You have to relax your toe muscles so your doctor may also prescribe some toe exercises that you can do at home to stretch and strengthen the muscles.
Of course -hammer toe can be corrected by surgery if conservative measures fail.