Do I Need to See a Doctor for a Broken Toe? Treatment and Recovery Options

Posted by on Thursday, December 7th, 2017

If you’ve ever broken a toe, you know it hurts like hell. It’s such a small part of the body, and yet an injury there causes so much discomfort and chaos in your everyday life. You’ve probably heard many tall tales, like the mistaken belief that “there’s nothing you can do about a broken toe” or the false assumption that you can just “tape the toes and continue running.” But before you think of a broken toe as a “simple injury,” consider this: of the 26 bones in the foot, 19 are toe bones, and the velocity of the toe hitting a stationary object is said to fall between 60-80 mph. Each year, broken toes account for about 9 percent of fractures treated professionally.There’s a lot of potential for debilitating injury here!

While it’s true that we sometimes tell patients to rest, ice, compress, elevate, and wear a stiff-soled shoe following a toe injury—things people can do themselves at home—the important part of what we do is confirming the extent of the damage and giving patients peace of mind during their recovery. We can’t tell you how many people come to us months or even years down the road with complications from a broken toe that wasn’t evaluated at the time of injury. So if you’re asking yourself, “Do I need to see a doctor for a broken toe?”, we recommend you always get a professional assessment of a fractured toe as soon as possible to get you set off on the path to recovery.

consult a doctor if you break a toe
Take care of your toes, and consult a doctor if you break one. Image Source: Unsplash user Jan Romero.

White Plains Podiatrists Discuss Five Important Facts About Turf Toe

Posted by on Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

“Turf toe” refers to a joint sprain of the big toe that may involve damage to the ligaments, tendons, and/or bones. Pain is worst at the bottom of the big toe, where there is usually a lot of swelling. Athletes report that they can’t push off, fully extend the toe, or walk without hobbling. NFL Player Patrick Willis likened his injury to “trying to grab without a thumb” or “trying to drive on bald tires.”

There are several ways this type of injury may occur. Most often, a player is running, raises their heel while the forefoot is planted, and digs a toe down in a forceful twisting or bending motion. The soft tissues of the toe hyper-extend, stretch, and sometimes tear or become misaligned. We’ve also had turf toe patients stub a toe or get stepped on by another player. Other times, patients participate in repetitive extensions or explosive sprinting that bring on the pain and inflammation. No matter how the injury was sustained, though, seeking prompt medical attention will prevent a small problem from becoming a big one. Here are five turf toe facts you should know in order to prevent or treat this condition.

turf toe in football players
Turf toe is a problem football players commonly experience. Image Source: Max Pixel.

Why Does Stubbing Your Toe Hurt So Much? White Plains Foot Doctors Explain Toe Pain

Posted by on Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

Furniture legs, doors, walls—there are limitless ways to stub your toe. If you’ve ever had the misfortune, then you know IT HURTS LIKE A MOTHER! Many patients say their stubbed toes hurt worse than fractures they’ve previously suffered—and yet, stubbed toes are rarely serious injuries. The extreme pain associated with a stubbed toe brings many people to our White Plains podiatry office asking, “Why does a minor toe injury cause such agony?”

Few injuries hurt as much as a stubbed toe -- but why?
Few injuries hurt as much as a stubbed toe. Image Source: Flickr user abarndweller.

NYC Foot Doctors Discuss Causes of Big Toe Pain and Treatment Options

Posted by on Friday, April 7th, 2017

Big toe pain is a big problem in New York City. The big toe’s function is to provide leverage to the foot during the push-off phase of the gait cycle. Along with the little toe, the health of the big toe is essential in maintaining balance while you stand. It is impossible to walk without a limp if your big toe hurts, and most people with big toe pain cannot run or even stand for long periods of time. There are many different issues associated with big toe discomfort, according to the best foot doctors in NYC at The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine.

Dancers are one group our NYC podiatrists frequently treat for big toe pain.
Dancers are one group our NYC podiatrists frequently treat for big toe pain. Image Source: Pixabay user Jabore.

Newly Approved Synthetic Cartilage Works Wonders For Toe Osteoarthritis

Posted by on Monday, March 6th, 2017

Osteoarthritis (OA) affects roughly 27 million Americans. Not surprisingly, the foot is one of the most common areas affected by joint cartilage degradation that can result from OA. OA is not merely a matter of “inevitable wear and tear” as we age; rather, it’s a disease process that is a result of many factors such as genetics, excess weight, tendon and ligament injuries, and the presence of other disorders such as acromegaly (a condition involving abnormal growth of the hands and feet) or hemochromatosis (a condition involving joint damage from excess iron.)

As osteoarthritis worsens over time, the bones can break down, causing chips (called “bone spurs”) that float around inside the joint. In response, inflammation occurs, prompting the accumulation of proteins and enzymes that further erode the cartilage. In the final stages of OA, there is no soft tissue remaining in the joint — just bone rubbing up against bone, which accelerates joint damage and causes excruciating pain.

The NYC foot surgeons at The Center For Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine are excited about the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval of a new synthetic cartilage that can be used in the treatment of osteoarthritis involving the foot and toe, offering these patients a pain-free step forward for the first time in years.

This may look like a mini marshmallow, but it’s actually a new toe implant used to treat Osteoarthritis! (Image Source: MedCityNews.com)
This may look like a mini marshmallow, but it’s actually a new toe implant used to treat osteoarthritis! (Image Source: MedCityNews.com)

NFL News: Is Atlanta Falcons’ Julio Jones Destined For Toe Surgery?

Posted by on Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

Turf toe, a common injury among NFL players like Julio Jones, doesn’t always require surgery. (Image Source: AAOS.org)
Turf toe, a common injury among NFL players like Julio Jones, doesn’t always require surgery. (Image Source: AAOS.org)

Injuries and high-level competition seem to go hand-in-hand. After their embarrassing stomping at the Super Bowl, fans are looking for any explanation for the historic loss. Not only did Center Alex Mack suffer a fractured fibula, but All-Pro wide receiver Julio Jones also “faces the prospect” of toe surgery after being dogged by a sprain since Week 10. NYC podiatrists discuss what happened to Jones, and what this type of injury could mean for an athlete’s near future.

What Happens After White Plains Hammer Toe Surgery?

Posted by on Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017

hammer toe surgery white plains
Knowing how to manage your recovery is a big part of healing from White Plains hammer toe surgery. (Image Source: Wikimedia.org)

If your second, third, and/or fourth toes bend at the middle joint while you are at rest, rather than laying flat, you may have a condition called “hammer toes.” You may find relief with a change in footwear, straightening cushions, and stretching; but the only way to truly correct the deformity is to undergo hammertoe surgery to correct the joint and soft tissues that are misaligned. Depending on the type of hammer toe you have, and the foot surgeon’s preferred technique, your surgery may involve a joint resection, ligament and tendon snipping, bone removal, tendon transfer, implantation, or fixation with pins or wires. In this article, the White Plains foot surgeons from The Center For Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine discuss what to expect during hammer toe surgery recovery.

Podiatrist-Recommended Turf Toe Exercises for Athletes

Posted by on Monday, August 29th, 2016

A lot of the athletes we treat are already familiar with “turf toe,” a ligament sprain in the big toe joint where the foot and toe come together. Tearing your big toe ligaments affects your balance, stability, and the push-off phase of your gait cycle. Then there’s the pain, which tends to feel worst at the bottom of the toe where it attaches to your foot. It usually hurts to extend your toe fully or walk, and you’ll probably notice some swelling.

With any luck, athletes can be back to the game within a day or two of resting, icing, compressing, and elevating. But more serious sprains can put you out for six to eight weeks, and a few players have even had their careers end following an injury like this, while others suffered arthritis-like stiffness or limited mobility upon healing. That’s why it’s so important to have a specialist look at your injury and guide you through rehabilitation to preserve range-of-motion.

turf toe exercises
“Turf toe” refers to a sprained ligament in the big toe joint. (Image Credit: HealingFeet)

Got Claw Toe, Mallet Toe, or Hammer Toe Pain? We Talk About Options for Treatment

Posted by on Friday, January 29th, 2016

More than 200,000 people are professionally treated for hammer toe pain each year. Like bunions, hammer toes are a progressive foot problem that worsens over time without treatment. Usually the deformity is obvious because the toes appear visibly bent, but other symptoms include pain at the top of the toes, corns forming on the middle toe joints, redness, swelling, and pain on top and in the ball of the foot at the base of the toe. Some hammer toes are flexible and others are semi-rigid or rigid. Patients may experience no pain unless they are walking.

Here are some of the best ways to treat hammer toe pain at home, in addition to having your condition professionally addressed by our NYC podiatrists.

hammer toe pain
There are a number of non-invasive therapies that can help hammer toe before surgery is considered. Image source: Wikimedia CC user Hellerhoff

NFL News: Redskins Lose Two Players with Foot & Ankle Injuries in Preseason

Posted by on Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015

The Washington Redskins seem to be one of the NFL teams worst plagued with injuries, particularly with key starters.1http://realredskins.com/2015/06/24/need-to-know-did-the-redskins-lose-more-starters-to-injuries-than-other-nfl-teams/ This year is no exception, with foot and ankle injuries hitting the team hard during preseason. This month, we learn that both tight ends, Logan Paulsen and Niles Paul, will be out for the season due to their injuries. NYC sports medicine doctors explore what went wrong.

Redskins player Niles Paul suffered a serious ankle injury in August. Image source: Wikimedia CC, Keith Allison

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1. http://realredskins.com/2015/06/24/need-to-know-did-the-redskins-lose-more-starters-to-injuries-than-other-nfl-teams/