Toes can be made shorter. This generally involves removal of a portion of the toe bone(s) and rebalancing of the soft tissues including tendons so the toe continues to function normally. This may be just the toe itself or it may involve the metatarsal bone, the long bone in the forefoot that articulates with the toe. This may require fixation (a pin or a screw).
Anyone with long, painful and/or deformed toes are appropriate for this procedure. The toes may be rubbing in footwear which causes painful corns or calluses over the tip of the toe or the knuckle joint.
You can make the big toe shorter- for those people who have a congenitally long toe (ie something you were born with). A long big toe can be cosmetically unappealing as well as painful.
Pain levels vary but generally this is well tolerated and people will usually take painkillers for up to three days after. It is important you rest and keep the foot elevated during the recovery process.
The recovery time depends on the procedure performed. If no fixation is required and it is only the toe you may be able to start returning to footwear and activity in as little as two weeks. If a pin has been put in it may be 4-6 weeks before you can start returning to normal footwear.
Most concerns have more than one course of treatment. Feel free to contact us so one of our team can discuss options for your unique concern.