Understanding Morton’s Toe

17 Feb Understanding Morton’s Toe

Introduction – About Morton’s Toe

Morton’s Toe, also known as Morton’s foot or Greek foot, is a common foot condition where the second toe appears longer than the big toe. Named after Dr. Dudley Joy Morton, who first described it in the early 20th century, this condition can lead to various foot problems if left untreated.


The primary cause of Morton’s Toe lies in the metatarsal bones of the foot. Typically, the second metatarsal bone is longer than the first, leading to the appearance of a longer second toe. This structural difference can put undue pressure on the second toe when walking or running, leading to discomfort and potential complications.


Individuals with Morton’s Toe may experience several symptoms, including:

  1. Pain or discomfort in the second toe, especially when bearing weight.
  2. Calluses or corns form on the sole of the foot, beneath the second toe.
  3. Difficulty finding properly fitting shoes due to the elongated second toe.

These symptoms can vary in severity from mild discomfort to significant pain, depending on individual factors such as foot structure and activity level.


If left untreated, Morton’s Toe can lead to various complications, including:

  1. Plantar Fasciitis: The abnormal distribution of weight on the foot can strain the plantar fascia, leading to inflammation and heel pain.
  2. Hammer Toe: Constant pressure on the second toe can cause it to bend downward, resulting in a condition known as hammer toe.
  3. Bunions: The misalignment of the toes can contribute to the development of bunions, which are bony protrusions at the base of the big toe.


Treatment for Morton’s Toe typically involves addressing symptoms and correcting any underlying issues. Options may include:

  1. Orthotic Inserts: Custom orthotic inserts can help redistribute weight on the foot, alleviating pressure on the second toe.
  2. Proper Footwear: Wearing shoes with a wide toe box can provide more space for the toes and reduce discomfort.
  3. Physical Therapy: Stretching and strengthening exercises can improve foot function and reduce pain associated with Morton’s Toe.
  4. Surgical Intervention: In severe cases where conservative measures fail to provide relief, surgery may be considered to correct structural abnormalities in the foot.

Seeking Professional Help

If you’re experiencing symptoms of Morton’s Toe, it’s essential to seek professional help from a qualified podiatrist. Shuman Podiatry & Sports Medicine in Sterling, VA, offers comprehensive foot care services, including diagnosis and treatment for Morton’s Toe. By addressing this condition early, you can prevent further complications and improve your foot health and overall well-being.

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