Lawrence Silverbergthe Internet home of Drs. Emanuel Sergi and Lawrence Silverberg, the most compassionate and skilled foot doctors in the New York City Metro area and the country.

Dr. Silverberg is Board Certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery. Our office is conveniently located in Midtown Manhattan near Grand Central Station.

We take great pride in providing excellent medical care along with great bedside manner and take the extra time to explain your problems and the treatment options in detail.

At City Footcare we treat all problems related to the foot and ankle. We use state of the art diagnostic and therapeutic equipment.

The doctors believe in patient education, and patient participation in their care. We take pride in spending time with our patients and listening to them. Our patients never feel rushed. We also take the time to explain patients’ problems in detail and spell out explicit treatment plans.

When your problem requires surgery, you can rest assured that you are in the hands of competent and highly trained surgeons. Drs. Sergi and Silverberg have been called the best foot surgeons in NYC and the best bunion surgeons in NYC. The doctors perform all foot and ankle surgery including traditional open surgery, minimally invasive surgery, laser surgery, radio frequency surgery and extra-corporeal shock wave therapy. Drs. Sergi and Silverberg are experts in all aspects of foot surgery. They are very detail oriented from start to finish. A good surgical outcome starts prior to entering the operating room. After expertly diagnosing patients’ conditions, they plan out the procedures with great skill. In the operating room they are skillful and precise. They also take into consideration aesthetics with incision planning and plastic surgery type suturing techniques.

They are hospital and surgery center affiliated.

To resolve all of your foot and ankle problems, simply look around this site and make an appointment with Drs. Sergi and Silverberg today. Your feet will be glad you did!

Please see the medical DISCLAIMER on the ‘about this blog page‘.

British Hammertoes are “Wonky Toes”!

A few weeks ago a lovely young woman came in to my office. She sat down with me in my exam room and proceeded to tell me in a wonderful British accent that her complaint was "Wonky toes".

I guessed that she meant hammertoes but I wanted to clarify this before proceeding. I had never heard the term Wonky with or without toes after it.  I asked her to clarify what she meant by wonky toes and she said, "you know like wonky teeth, crooked toes, crooked teeth."

We had a good laugh and I had learned a new term. I asked her if I could blog about her and she agreed (obviously, as you *are* reading this).

My guess is that this post will be at the top of the search engines for wonky toes as I bet no one else is writing about wonky toes (at least in the US).

Fixing “Wonky Toes” – Wonky-Hammertoe Surgery.

My lovely patient had surgery yesterday for the diagnosis of hammertoe syndrome to correct two hammertoes. British translation: (read aloud in your best British accent) “This patient had surgery yesterday to correct two wonky toes in order to resolve her wonky toe syndrome.”

Pictures of her wonky toes are below. I’ll get the before and after hammertoe surgery pictures posted in a few months.

This picture (click to enlarge) shows the hammertoes of the fourth and fifth toes. The fourth toe is contracted down and under the third toe. The fifth toe is also contracted and rotated.





This is a picture of the same foot (click to enlarge) taken from another angle. You can see the third toe is elevated off the ground from the fourth toe residing underneath it. You can also see the fifth toenail is rotated forty five degrees relative to the ground.


I will be posting postoperative hammertoe surgery pictures soon…

I love when people post comments so please do not be shy. I will also personally answer all questions presented.

Thanks for reading, Lawrence.


17 Responses to British Hammertoes are “Wonky Toes”!
  1. jack
    October 30, 2011 | 9:07 pm

    hi i have the same problem with the same toe what can i do

    • drsilver
      November 3, 2011 | 2:38 am

      Hi Jack, if you are referring to hammertoes, the only permanent fix is a surgical procedure in order to reduce the contracture deformity of the toe. This procedure is called an arthroplasty when I remove a piece of bone at the knuckle and an arthrodesis procedure when I fuse to bones together at the knuckle.

      Come back soon as I am writing a very detailed article on hammertoes soon.

  2. Linda
    November 3, 2011 | 1:55 am

    Hi Dr. Silverberg,

    I loved this post! I am British (from London) so naturally found this very funny. Wonky = not straight / crooked. Even though you know this already, I will illustrate with my joke:
    What do you call a three legged donkey? A wonky!
    What do you call a three legged donkey with one eye? A winky wonky!

    Ok…maybe not funny…it must just be us Brits with our bad teeth, bad toes and bad sense of humour!

    • drsilver
      November 3, 2011 | 2:19 am

      Hi Linda, I’m glad you found humor, excuse me, humoUr in my post.

      What do you call a three legged donkey with one eye ridden by Charlie Sheen? Winky wonky, Winning!

      I am about to answer your bunion question next….

      Dr. S.

  3. Adam
    December 3, 2011 | 5:22 am

    Thank you doc. I’ve been looking around and I couldn’t find any info on this. However my feet look exactly like that, with the 4th toe under the third, and the 5th rotated like that. And additional thing is how difficult clipping toe nails is because of it, how they dig down into your toes. Did you get post op pics up?

    Thanks 🙂

    • drsilver
      December 3, 2011 | 4:33 pm

      Hi Adam, Thanks for the comment. I have before and after pictures but have not had time to post them yet. I will soon. The post operative pictures are only at 2 months so there is still a lot of scar tissue but you can clearly see how the toes look. I’ll try to get to post these after pictures as soon as possible.


      • Alex
        April 26, 2012 | 5:49 am

        Post procedure pictures please ; thanks

        • drsilver
          July 23, 2012 | 1:38 am

          Alex, oh yeah. I forgot to post postop pictures here. I’ll try to get to it ASAP. Thanks for the reminder.

  4. Alicia M.
    January 10, 2012 | 1:17 am

    My 6 year old son has “wonky toes”. His fourth toe curves into the others – one quite a bit more than the other. The pinky toe is a bit rotated like the picture above but maybe not AS much. Mainly it’s the 4th toe issue. And it does NOT lift up the 3rd toe when he stands (they separate). It just tucks into it – his 2nd and 3rd toes are pretty long so it tucks into the middle of it.
    Mine does this just a tad so I think it’s just genetics. I wish I could post a picture!
    I was quite worried about this as I don’t want my child to have to go through surgery. At his kindergarten appointment, his doctor and I agreed that unless they started causing him pain or blistering from rubbing on socks/shoes then we’re going to leave it. He’ll just have knobby toes and he’s a MALE so I’m not sure if he’s going to care about the appearance of his feet.
    So I’m just wanting to double check that I’m hopefully making the right choice. To have surgery on your feet at 6 for a crooked toe that doesn’t bother at all… Just doesn’t make sense… Right?

    Thank you! I am also looking forward to pictures of the correction. How long do you have to stay off your feet for a surgery like that?

    Thanks for any help or advice!

  5. Penny Bodle
    February 4, 2012 | 3:19 am

    My God, Ms. Wonky Toes hasn’t even seen Wonky! I am in agony and finally need to do something about this. I had bunion surgery when I was a kid (teenager) because they were so severe and I was pain free for about 20 years but now my feet are starting to hurt again. I’ve got a ganglion cyst over the scar tissue on my left foot with a bunion underneath it (can feel it). In addition, the bunion appears to be returning on my right foot and I’ve got “tailor’s bunions” on both feet now so I can barely fit into my work shoes. I take them off when I’m sitting at my desk but on the street I’m in agony. I work at 44th and 5th so I guess I’d better come in to see you…..

    • drsilver
      August 20, 2012 | 1:41 am

      Hi Penny.

      Sounds like you got a good twenty years out of your surgery but may need a tune up..

      We are neighbors! Two to three blocks. Small world.

      Speaking of my wonky toe blog, I recently put up some more before and after pictures of her hammertoe sugery. She is scheduled to come in again soon and I will post pictures about a year after hammertoe sugery.

      I look forward to seeing you one day.

      Dr. S.

  6. Alex
    February 22, 2012 | 10:56 am

    Hi Dr,

    Glad to have come across your blog though on the other side of the continent !

    My wife gave birth to our first son in Jan. He has his fourth toe coming under the third. The rest are all fine.

    Our pediatrician said this is one of the most common ‘birth toe defects’ in children and advised us to let it until he ia an adult. He asked whether we had any family members with the same defect. But we don’t seem to have any at least in the past generation.

    My question is whether it will conflict with his activities as he grows up and what to do next.

    Thanks in advance for your views.


    • drsilver
      July 23, 2012 | 2:21 am

      Alex, you can try using Coban to tape his toe every day for a long time to see if you can get it to grow straighter. See a pediatric orthopedist to ask if he or she thinks it may help in your case.

      Often this contracted toe has no adverse effects on their activity and presents no pain.

  7. ForeverUglyToes (FUT)
    September 14, 2012 | 4:35 am

    Hi Doctor,
    first thank you for such an amazing site and sharing so generously your knowledge! I have a similar condition as the person above with my 4th toe, it is rotated. But I have a significant gap between the second and third toe, and my second and third toes seem to share the same base just like the person above (do I make sense?). The gap only appears when my feet are flat on the ground. My mom and grandmother have the same rotated 4th toe condition, yet without the large gap between the 3 and 4 toes. My big toes hurst often in the evenings, an I have to crack them. I am not sure if it is related to the odd shape of my feet. My feet make me feel miserable, I grew up with people making fun of them and I do not dare show them in public…Plus the pain is not pleasant. I would be grateful if you could let me know if my condition could be fixed. Thanks in advance for your advice.

    • drsilver
      October 1, 2012 | 12:21 am


      Unfortunately I can’t let let know about a surgical fix for your feet without a thorough exam and X-rays. I suggest you see a good local podiatrist.

      Dr. S.

  8. Hope
    April 14, 2014 | 6:25 pm

    I don t think I have hammertoes but my second toe goes straight then to the side and I don t know how to make them straight. What can I do.

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