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Does a Broken Toe Require a Doc?

The other night, my husband accidentally kicked the wall and did a doozy on his toe. Normally I don't fall for it when he over dramatizes these things, but we all know that nothing hurts worse than knocking your toe on the door jamb. His toe quickly turned black and blue and he claimed it was broken.

I, being FitSugar and all, said that he would just have to deal with it because doctors don't fix broken toes. A broken toe can set you back in your fitness goals and now he's bummed because he can't go for his morning jogs.

After stating my case, I decided to do my research, and it turns out I was wrong (not something that happens all the time, mind you) -- Apparently doctors do fix broken toes! (I blame my mom for implanting this myth in my head.) Here's more:

Nineteen of the 26 bones in the foot are toe bones. There are things a foot and ankle surgeon can do to make a broken toe heal better and prevent problems later on, such as arthritis or toe deformities.

Broken toes that aren’t treated correctly can also make walking and wearing shoes difficult. A foot and ankle surgeon will x-ray the toe to learn more about the fracture. If the broken toe is out of alignment, the surgeon may have to insert a pin, screw or plate to reposition the bone.

But not all hurt toes are broken. To learn when to go see a doc, just

EMedicineHealth recommends calling a doctor if any of the following occur to the injured area:

  • Worsening or new pain not relieved by pain medication and the measures described in the treatment section.
  • Sores, redness, or open wounds near the injured toe.
  • Cold, numb, or tingling toes.
  • Blue or gray colored skin


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