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Classification and external resources
Moderate severity Clinodactyly
ICD-9 755.59
DiseasesDB 16756

Clinodactyly (from the Ancient Greek klinen meaning "to bend" and daktylos meaning "finger") is a medical term describing a bend or curvature of the fifth fingers (the "little fingers") toward the adjacent fourth fingers. It is a fairly common isolated anomaly which often goes unnoticed, but also occurs in combination with other abnormalities in many genetic syndromes, such as Russell-Silver syndrome, Feingold syndrome and in approximately 80%[1] of individuals with Down syndrome. When identified in prenatal ultrasound, it is considered statistically correlated with increased risk of chromosome aberration in the fetus and may be an indication for intrauterine sampling for fetal chromosome analysis. It is also common in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

The term can also be used to describe curled toes. Clinodactyly or congenital curly toes is sometimes seen in the third, fourth or fifth toe and is "fairly common and follows a familial pattern." [2]


Clinodactyly can be an anomaly that is isolated or it can be a component manifestation that is present in many genetic syndromes. Some of the genetic syndromes are Down Syndrome, Aarskog syndrome, Carpenter syndrome, Seckel syndrome, Cornelia de Lange syndrome, Mohr syndrome, Russel-Silver syndrome.[3] Having clinodactyly does not automatically mean that you have a genetic syndrome, people with no genetic abnormalities also have manifestation of clinodactyly.

Clinodactyly usually affects the middle phalanx of the smallest finger. This produces an angle in the joint, "a deviation of <10 degrees is common, and may be considered normal".[4] The finger could be slightly bent or have a very prominent bent. There are many people with this anomaly that do not have any syndromes, but they do have a slightly bent finger. It can be passed through inheritance and is an autosomal dominant trait that has variable expressiveness and incomplete penetrance.

Clinodactyly is the result of two different process, incomplete ossification which is a delay of the ossification process that is caused by the failure in the supply of minerals in the bone which can be supplemented by taking vitamins. Secondly by the delay in the transformation phases of the cartilage cells, this condition delays the "filling-in" of the bone forming cells.[5]

Additional images[edit]

X-ray showing clinodactyly and brachymesophalangy of the fifth finger 






2014-04-06 22:27:02


Alexander K. C. Leung and C. Pion Kao J Natl Med Assoc

(Reusing this file)

See below.


  1. ^ Fuente: Series de porcentajes obtenidas en un amplio estudio realizado por el CMD (Centro Médico Down) de la Fundación Catalana del Síndrome de Down, sobre 796 personas con SD. Estudio completo en Josep M. Corretger et al (2005). Síndrome de Down: Aspectos médicos actuales. Ed. Masson, para la Fundación Catalana del Síndrome de Down. ISBN 84-458-1504-0. Pag. 24-32.
  2. ^ Koepsel, Kirk A. "Curled Toes". Retrieved December 2010. 
  3. ^ [Familial clinodactyly of the fifth finger. Alexander K. C. Leung and C. Pion Kao J Natl Med Assoc. Dec 2003; 95(12): 1198–1200.
  4. ^ [Handbook of Fetal Medicine by Sailesh Kumar ISBN 978-0-521-67536-9
  5. ^ On the inheritance and development of clinodactyly A. H. Hersh, F. DeMarinis, Robert M. Stecher which causes the bone to not fully develop as it normally should have. Am J Hum Genet. 1953 September; 5(3): 257–268.