1. Welcome to the Foot Health Forum community where you can ask about foot problems and get help, as well as be up-to-date with the latest foot health information. Only registered members can ask a question, but you do not need to register to respond and give help. Please become part of the community (here) and check out the shop.

Fractured Great Toe

Discussion in 'Ask your questions here' started by Randi, Oct 17, 2010.

  1. Randi

    Randi Guest

    Members do not see these Ads. Sign Up.
    About 2 and 1/2 weeks ago, I broke my big toe while dancing in my dormroom. I hit it on a porcelain sink and went to the doctor a day later to find out exactly if it was broken or not.

    I was told to wear a ankle boots like thing for 4 week and come back for another x-ray to see how things were healing.

    I've been taking really good care as to keep from moving it around too much, and even tape it to the two toes next to it for stability while I'm going to class or running errands.

    I'm an avid runner (run about 7 miles a day) and dance (ballet and working to going en pointe/toe shoes). I also involve myself in step aerobics, pilates, and other dance forms.

    My concern is I'm worried at not being able to do these things anymore, expect en pointe ballet dancing.

    I don't mind waiting for a while before doing these things again, though I am already SO fidgety and feel lazy, I just want to have if this break is going to put me at a loss of not being able to do these things.

    Thank you for your time.
  2. FootDoc

    FootDoc New Member

    It is particularly important that a fracture of the great toe be appropriately treated, as it is the only toe that really matters for general ambulation and athletics. Hopefully you have chosen a doctor who is well qualified to treat this sort of injury.
  3. Randi

    Randi Guest

    I went to the student health services, then to a physician (who I had to ask to get an x-ray), was sent to the hospital for x-rays, and then finally to a specialist/podiatrist; all within two days. I was told by the first two it looked like nothing and to just keep an eye on it, but I felt, because I was an athlete, I didn't want to chance it, so I insisted to get an x-ray. I'm glad I did.

    But, what I want to know is if the bone heals, should I be able to participate in all these tings again or will the bone be weak to handle all these activities.
  4. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    What did the podiatrist say? He should be able to answer your questions. It is a good thing that you did go to a specialist. About 20 years ago, I had a spiral fracture of the great toe which extended into the joint. In my case, within thirty mnutes of my injury, the entire top of my foot was extremely black and blue and within an hour the bottom was also dark black and blue. The pain was off the charts so I had no doubt that I had fractued the toe. I went to the er. Films confirmet that I had a fracture. The resident ortho casted my foot. I ran into my primary doctor at the hospital. He told me to get copies of the films and gave me the name of a specialist to call the following day. The orthopedist said that normally, he doesn't treat toes, but because it was the big toe, treatment was important. He also said that I had pretty much crushed the bone. Even after the fracture healed, I continued to have soft tissue pain for about a year. The toe did heal completely and did not result in any long term limitations. Good luck
  5. Randi

    Randi Guest

    Oh yikes! I pray that I've gotten the best treatment that I could have then. I did ask him, but he danced around the question two or three times and sent me on my way quickly (as he was about an hour late to all his appointment due to a surgery that ran over).

    I've never broken a bone before, so I can say I thought it was quite painful, though I didn't bruise very bad, but the pressure of any weight was terrible. I still can't put weight on it, and it's been about 3 weeks.

    I don't have any type of support or reinforcement, which makes me worry a lot. I got a small boot from the specialist that I'm to wear while walking. I decided on buddy-taping because I felt like it as more supportive and my toe wasn't moving around and sagging while I'm moving around and not resting.

    I took a look at the x-rays at the specialist and there was a crack in the top part of the right great toe going down in a diagonal to wear that part of the bone stop; so it wasn't crushed.

    A year?! I hope it's not that long. I was reading that most people are saying 3 to 6 months they were completely healed, though I understand that the bone will continue to develop for years after. I was also reading the bone is strong once fully healed.... don't know how true that is.
  6. FootDoc

    FootDoc New Member

    Unlike most tissues of the body, bone heals with real bone cells, and a well-healed fracture should result in bone as strong as it was prior to injury. If, however, the fracture invaded the joint structures, this may be problematic even after maximum healing takes place. Also, fractures do not occur in a vacuum, so it is likely that there is damage to tissues other than bone. Only time will tell if you will have any residual disability.
  7. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    I fractured my great toe on October 16 while stretching after running. The ER physician's assistant who I saw that day said it only needed to be buddy-taped, but the next day I visited a podiatrist, and after taking several x-rays, he concluded that surgery was the best option since the toe was significantly rotated and fractured in multiple locations. I, like you, was concerned about how this would impact my life since I am also a runner and a high school baseball umpire, in addition to working full-time as a high school teacher. The doctor suggested that while there is never a guarantee that surgery will entirely restore the toe back to how it was before being fractured, without it I would likely experience arthritic-like pain when performing such activities as walking and running.

    What happens in your case all comes down to how you broke the bone. An experienced podiatrist is your best bet for an accurate diagnosis. Since the bone begins to heal itself, it is best to have surgery within a week of the break, the doctor said. In my case, I had four pins (K-wire) inserted in the toe and have been unable to bear weight since surgery three weeks ago. I am out of the cast and now use a boot when hobbling around the house. Still, I cannot put any weight on that boot. Next week I will visit the doctor to see how the bone is healing. All told, the doctor said recovery time can be up to eight weeks following surgery and that I should soon be back to normal.

    Good luck.
  8. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Hello! Recently, my big toe on my right foot has been in some pain. I dance, and in trying to master a new move involving swinging my leg out behind me, I stubbed my toe on the ground. This happened about 1 week ago, no whenever I flex my toe it hurts and cracks. No bruising or swelling though. Do you think is should get it checked out? I thiink at this point I could try a medical boot...please reply!
  9. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    I had a spiral fracture of the big toe back in 2010. I went to the ER, where the doctor told me it was a pretty bad fracture, but that I should see a podiatrist. He said that very likely no surgery would be done. When I went to see a podiatrist, he told me that surgery (inserting a pin) was necessary to restore optimum function to the toe. I should have gone for a second and third opinion, but I chose to have the surgery. My toe still hurts more than it did before the surgery, even three years later. I have no mobility through the joint, am unable to stand for long periods of time (which has limited my job options), and I cannot sleep without heavy-duty drugs so that I don't feel the pain, which gets worse in the evening, especially if I've been standing for periods of time. This podiatrist is a charlatan, and was just looking to make money. NEVER have surgery to any of your toes for a fracture!
    It's best just to let it heal naturally. Now, I have to get injections of synthetic synovial fluid every three months so that the pain isn't unbearable.
  10. Jamesvall

    Jamesvall Guest

    Hi I broke my big toe in two places about 8 weeks ago on the joint thats in the middle of the toe (sorry don't know name), the dr set me home and said I should e healed in 3-4 weeks and to try and walk on it as a bit of movement can be beneficial! Now I'm 8 weeks down the line an my toes is still reall painfully, bruised and swollen! I have stubbed it a number of times while it was healing and I'm worried I may have caused damage to it! Is this a possibility and should I be looking at getting it re xrayed?

Share This Page