Webbing of the fingers and toes is called syndactaly. It refers to the connection of two or more fingers or toes. Webbing usually only involves a skin connection between the two areas, but in rare cases may involve the fusion of bones. This is known as simple vs. complex webbing. What occurs here is a failure of two or more adjacent digits to fully segmentalize during development.
Webbing occurs once in every 2000-2500 births and is three times more common in males than females. Webbing may be discovered during an examination of an infant or child. In its most common form, it is seen as webbing between the 2nd and 3rd toes. This form is often inherited and is not unusual.
Syndactyly can also occur along with other birth defects involving the skull, face, and bones. In fact webbing of the toes may be associated with over 300 syndromes.
The web connections usually run up to the first joint of the finger or toe, but may run the entire length. Bilateral involvement is found in 50% of patients.
"Polysyndactyly" describes both webbing and the presence of an extra number of fingers or toes. The "location" of the extra digit goes a long way in determining treatment, if treatment is necessary.
In the foot three types of webbing are seen.
Type 1 (zygodactyly), partial or complete webbing of the second and third toes; hands may also be affected.
Type 2 (synpolydactyly), syndactyly of the lateral two toes and polydactaly of the fifth toe in the syndactyly web.
Type 3, associated with metatarsal fusion.
Surgical intervention for simple syndactaly of the foot is rarely indicated as the webbing causes minimal loss of function of the toes, it is more of an issue with the fingers. Perhaps the number one reason for surgical intervention is cosmetic disapproval by the patient, rather than loss of function, at least in the foot.
Simple syndactaly involves skin grafts to separate the toes. If the two adjacent bones are fused separation becomes more difficult because many times there is only a single tendon and vascular system supplying the two toes and once separated obviously the two toes would no longer be able to share the tendon and blood supply.
In instances where you have a polydactyly (extra digit), if it occurs on the medial or lateral side of the foot, then amputation of the extra digit is the treatment of choice, assuming once again the extra digit does not share a common blood supply with the adjacent digit.
In patients that exhibit central polydactyly where the extra digit is in the middle of the foot, it becomes more difficult to determine which digit to surgically remove. However, removing the extra "inside" digit does not narrow the foot in any way and reconstruction of the middle of the foot in a cosmetically acceptable fashion can be very difficult.
Jan 27, 22 07:37 PM
In general terms, localized arthritic flare ups in the foot are best treated by a podiatrist, while systemic arthritic conditions are best treated by a rheumatologist. It is important to note that the…
Jan 25, 22 02:39 PM
Ingrown toenails may be removed in two different ways. The first is to just remove the ingrown portion of the nail leaving the rest of the nail intact. Doing this will relieve the pain from the ingrow…
Jan 24, 22 01:23 PM
Since nail does not repair itself you will have to wait for the nail to go through a complete growth cycle. At some point the back end of the split will grow forward enough and you will be able to cut…
Jan 21, 22 10:42 AM
I will make the assumption that you are reasonably young and not a diabetic. A wound on the back of the heel in an otherwise healthy individual may not close for a couple of reasons. The first is from…
Jan 20, 22 10:40 AM
There is no one size fits all answer to your question simply because each nail may leave remnants on the nail bed that are hard to eliminate. For example nails removed on the smaller toes, in general…
Jan 19, 22 06:40 PM
Tennis star Rafael Nadal has been suffering from a somewhat rare condition on his left foot, on and off for close to 16 years. More recently he was forced to take five months off from his grueling sch…
Jan 19, 22 10:12 AM
When taking oral Lamisil for nail fungus there are a couple of points worth mentioning. The first is whether or not you have the type of growth underneath your nails that Lamisil will respond to. Lami…
Jan 18, 22 11:13 AM
There are a few factors that determine how long bunion surgery takes to heal. The first and most important is the type of bunion procedure being performed. In its simplest form, bunion surgery may con…
Jan 17, 22 02:58 PM
The key factors here is the amount of displacement and the direction that the distal end of the metatarsal is directed as a result of the fracture. The distal end being the part of the bone closest to…
Jan 16, 22 10:26 AM
The rate at which any nail grows is proportional to the amount of blood coming into the growth plate of the nail. The nail matrix or growth plate is the part of the nail just under the skin at the bac…