Brachymetatarsia is a condition in which one of the five long bones of the foot (the metatarsals) is abnormally short, resulting in a shortened toe. Usually, it’s the fourth toe, but the deformity occasionally occurs with other toes as well. 

There are two primary causes of brachymetatarsia: genetic and situational. Unfortunately, the toe will never grow to full length on its own. To extend the short toe, Khosroabadi Institute suggests a viable cure for brachymetatarsia: its minimally-invasive brachymetatarsia (short toe) procedure.

Addressing the Causes of and Cures for Brachymetatarsia 

One cause of brachymetatarsia is genetic—a child may have a stunted metatarsal growth plate that appears before they’re 10 years old. Brachymetatarsia can also be induced by premature closure in the metatarsal growth plate due to trauma or infection. Conventional cures for brachymetatarsia don’t actually help the short toe grow, but often minimize the discomfort. They include:

  • Wearing special shoes with a large toe box
  • Special padding to protect the short toe from friction and irritation caused by the shoe
  • Custom-made orthotics to relieve pressure and distribute weight to other bones. 

If those treatments don’t work, then bone lengthening surgery might be the next option. During an in-depth consultation, Dr. Alireza Khosroabadi assesses your condition and determines if you’re a candidate for one of two types of brachymetatarsia surgery: external fixator or one-stage bone graft lengthening.

Khosroabadi Institute's Successful Brachymetatarsia (Short Toe) Procedure

Here’s what you should know about Dr. K.’s brachymetatarsia surgical options. 

External Fixator

This procedure works much like braces do as they slowly straighten crooked teeth. It involves making a small incision and attaching a bone-stretching device—known as an external fixator—to the short toe bone to help lengthen it. 

Over the next couple of months, you’ll gradually and painlessly turn the device at home until the toe is gently stretched to the appropriate length. The bone is usually lengthened .5 mm per day, but that varies. For example, if your toe was 5 centimeters short, the lengthening would take about 40 days.

During this time, you can stand and move about with the help of crutches. 

One-Stage Bone Graft Lengthening

Another option is when Dr. K. cuts the short toe bone in half and inserts a graft between the two portions of the bone. After a few weeks, the bone graft heals and becomes part of the original toe bone. The lengthening is done at once and can’t be changed after surgery. 

Ready for a better solution to fix your short toe permanently? This testimonial may ring true for you: an extremely shortened fourth toe that simply stopped growing, causing endless blisters and pain. Learn how Dr. K.'s innovative techniques resolved the problem.