Webbed Toes: Causes, symptoms, and treatment in Dallas, Plano & Texas is an unusual foot condition whereby some of the toes are fused together.
An estimated 1 in every 2,000–3,000 children born each year has webbed toes.
Webbed toe is an abnormality that is present at birth. It can be seen during the early stages of pregnancy but it normally disappears as the fetus matures. However, in rare cases, the toes don’t separate correctly as the fetus matures. This causes the skin of two or more toes to join together, known as webbed toes.
Webbed toes usually occur in the second and third toes. The skin of the two toes joins together. However, there are cases of complex webbed toes whereby the bones of the two toes fused together. There are rare cases whereby 3 toes join together.
Webbed toes are a mere cosmetic abnormality. It does not pose a threat to your health. You could still go about your normal life and daily activities.
Causes of webbed toes
Webbed Toes: Causes, symptoms, and treatment in Dallas, Plano & Texas is an inherited condition. Children develop webbed toes right from the womb. Researchers still do not understand the main cause or factors that causes webbed toes. Most cases have no known cause.
- The common symptoms of webbed toes is when the toes almost or entirely fused together.
- The toes may be fused from the base and then separated at the tip (partial fusion).
- The toes may be fused totally from the base to the tip (total fusion).
- Fusion may include two or more toes.
- Minor cases may not interfere with your foot movements and function. However, severe cases whereby multiple toes are fused together may affect the function and movements of your foot and toes.
Webbed toes do not cause physical disabilities or negatively affect the health of a person. You can still perform your daily activities and enjoy a health lift without pain or difficulty. However, it can be embarrassing and have a negative effect on a person’s self-esteem.
Webbed toe treatments are designed to restore a normal toe appearance. The treatment is majorly a surgical procedure done to separate the fused toes.
Surgery is usually done at a tender age between 12 to 18 months. It is easier and safer to separate webbed toes when an individual is at a tender age than when the individual has matured.
Before the surgery, the doctor will conduct imaging scans such as x-ray or ultrasound to determine the exact structures involved and the best surgical approach to take.
The doctor may also order blood tests and chromosomal tests to check if the webbing relates to another condition and to check if the child has other physical signs of a genetic syndrome.
The surgical procedure that will be performed depends on the severity of the webbing and the structures involved.
Are webbed toes bad?
Webbed toes do not affect the health of an individual. You can go about your normal activities and live a healthy life with webbed toes. However, some people with webbed may feel embarrassed or have low-self esteem when in the midst of other people.
Are webbed toes a sign of autism?
Webbed toes are not a sign of autism. Though it may be characterized with autism, it is not a sign of autism.
Why are some babies born with webbed toes?
Babies with a family history of webbed toes are more likely to be born with webbed toes. Also, babies with certain rare genetic disorders like Down syndrome are more likely to be born with webbed toes.
The nutritional choices or smoking habits of the mother during pregnancy might increase the risks of a baby having webbed toes. Though, this is not certain.
Is webbed feet a sign of inbreeding?
No, it is not sign of inbreeding. It is an abnormality present at birth.
Do webbed toes need surgery?
Yes, most webbed toes are surgically separated.
Are webbed toes dominant or recessive?
There is a higher chance of having webbed toes if you have a family history of the condition. Most children with webbed toes got it due to hereditary factors. Webbed toes can also occur for no known reason. It may also relate to genetic defects.
Do webbed toes cause pain?
Webbed toes do not cause pain. You can go about your normal activities without feeling any pain. You can wear your shoes just like every other person without feeling pain.
Webbed toes Surgery
During the surgery, the child will be given general anesthesia to make the child sleep and unconscious throughout the surgery. The surgeon will then cut through the webbed toes in a zigzag manner along the midline point. The reason for cutting in a zigzag manner is to prevent the scarring from interfering with healthy growth and development.
If any structures other than the skin are fused, the surgeon will carefully separate the structures as the zigzag cut is being made.
After the cut is made, the surgeon will stitch the skin on each toe to close the open wound. If this is impossible, skin graft will be used. The surgeon will harvest pieces of healthy skin from the child’s inner groin or back of the upper arm and transplant the skin on the open wound to cover up the wound.
After the skin graft, the area will be thoroughly bandaged. A cast may be fixed to cover and immobilize the corrected toes and to protect the toes from injury as they heal.
The surgery could take about 2-5 hours to be completed.
Recovery and results
After the surgery, the child may have to stay in the hospital for a few days. There may be mild bruising, swelling, and nail discoloration on the toes. The child will start to feel pain when the anesthesia has worn off; hence pain medications will be given to relieve pain.
It will take about a month before the child can begin to put pressure on the toes. It takes 3-6 months for the child to fully recover.