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Conoga
12-22-2008, 04:44 PM
just curious and i'm sure it would be rather obvious but..... how do you know the difference between a broken or fractured toe?

i had two incidents three days apart - youngest son dropped a dresser drawer on my foot(dont ask) and it hurt like a sunnamabitch...... then last night in a fit of complete stupidity i stepped over a babygate, put all my weight on the wrong foot, so when i brought my other leg over i lost my balance and stumbled around like a complete buffoon. tripped over the garbage can, knocked it over and then tripped over the contents of it... by the time my dance was over i landed with the already injured toe buckled under my foot.... once again hurting like a sunnamabitch. after few deep breaths i hopped out of the kitchen...

so i'm curious just for the sake of curiosity ..
i've never broken a bone in my life(only came close with a few horse riding accidents). i've always heard that docs wont bother with a broken toe. they'll make ya walk on crutches or give you a special boot.. something like that.
today my poor abused big toe is ..well.. swollen and bruised. but i can walk on it. its just a constant dull ache all the way from the knuckle and to the first joint. and it pops when i wiggle my toes.
i would imagine if it was broken or fractured i'd be in quite a bit of pain and would not be walking around like normal. i dont know. i've never met anyone who has broken a toe either lol

Tammy82669
12-22-2008, 05:06 PM
just curious and i'm sure it would be rather obvious but..... how do you know the difference between a broken or fractured toe?

i had two incidents three days apart - youngest son dropped a dresser drawer on my foot(dont ask) and it hurt like a sunnamabitch...... then last night in a fit of complete stupidity i stepped over a babygate, put all my weight on the wrong foot, so when i brought my other leg over i lost my balance and stumbled around like a complete buffoon. tripped over the garbage can, knocked it over and then tripped over the contents of it... by the time my dance was over i landed with the already injured toe buckled under my foot.... once again hurting like a sunnamabitch. after few deep breaths i hopped out of the kitchen...

so i'm curious just for the sake of curiosity ..
i've never broken a bone in my life(only came close with a few horse riding accidents). i've always heard that docs wont bother with a broken toe. they'll make ya walk on crutches or give you a special boot.. something like that.
today my poor abused big toe is ..well.. swollen and bruised. but i can walk on it. its just a constant dull ache all the way from the knuckle and to the first joint. and it pops when i wiggle my toes.
i would imagine if it was broken or fractured i'd be in quite a bit of pain and would not be walking around like normal. i dont know. i've never met anyone who has broken a toe either lol
Hmm first OUCH (hugs) sorry you got boo boos :wno:

Second I personally wouldnt know the difference.
I have never actually broken a bone either. And ditto on the close calls with riding accidents tho.
I had a hair line fracture in my right hand recently. The bone in my hand below my pinky finger. I threw a temper tantrum and pounded my fists on a table catching that bone on the table edge with my last strike. Hurt like a <bleep> It only swelled right where I hit it but was almost instantly purple. Not much you can do for that except be careful with it til it heals. It aches tho something aweful still. (did it 4 months ago) In fact thats one reason why I'm even replying to this. It's super cold here atm and that part of my hand is aching today and I was noticing it right before I read your thread.:sad1:
So yeah I'm typing with just 3 fingers LOL


My brother had brittle bones when he was young and now that he's older they are much stronger but he still has issues. Something about too many steroids for lung infections as a child. Anyhow he's broken LOTS of bones and often he's been able to move the injured body part without a ridiculous amount of pain.
He broke his hand snow boarding a few years back on his 2nd run and stayed the rest of the day with a rigged splint. Guess the cold helped the swelling and pain and he didn't want to loose his day pass. LOL
Anyhow the only thing I remember from all his injuries was alot of swelling and the broken part didn't work well if at all.

WeeJamie
12-22-2008, 05:11 PM
Yea, broken toes heel on there own I think. My DH has broken a few toes. Just wear good shoes for protection. You can still walk........just hurts alot.

Stapes
12-22-2008, 05:28 PM
I think it might depend on how far down on the toe the break is. A friend of mine broke her toe and didn't know it and ended up with nerve damage. Ended up having to have it re-broken. The break was on her toe but into her foot. It wasn't her big toe though. Hope you are feeling better and that it's not broken.

FeverChick
12-22-2008, 05:35 PM
When I had a fractured finger...all they did was tape it to the other one. I think with toes sometimes they tape them to another toe, but there really isn't much a doctor/nurse can do for it...I believe

Conoga
12-22-2008, 05:38 PM
:th_whistle: i have to admit i punched something once and hurt my hand like you described now that you mention...... middle finger's knuckle was all kinds of colours and all puffy and i couldnt make a fist.. which was a good thing because i probably would have punched something else :skeptical:....... and yes it even aches a bit right now when i clench my fist lol that was only two months ago, roughly.... maybe three.

i've always had good strong bones. i'm lucky there!
the annoying thing really is i'm active. i never walk slowly anywhere and i have a habit of walking on my toes when i am not in shoes- done it since i was a kid. i dunno why.. my sons both do it too - today i've been making myself slow the hell down.. last thing i need is to fall down the stairs because my stupid toe buckles under me :swoon:

Conoga
12-22-2008, 05:40 PM
I think it might depend on how far down on the toe the break is. A friend of mine broke her toe and didn't know it and ended up with nerve damage. Ended up having to have it re-broken. The break was on her toe but into her foot. It wasn't her big toe though. Hope you are feeling better and that it's not broken.

thats not good!
i dont think i have nerve damage though. not yet anyway lol after last nights ballet who knows. the drawer was dropped on the middle joint though. right square in the middle. not sure about the nerves in that area.

LadyAnara
12-22-2008, 06:01 PM
Ouch. sorry to hear that you hurt yourself. lots and lots of hugs.

I believe the difference is a break goes all they way through the bone where a fracture only goes partly through the bone. I also believe that it depends on where the break is on your toe as to what the doctors will do for it. More than likely they would do nothing and let it heal on it's own. I hope your toe gets better soon.

melissa
12-22-2008, 06:03 PM
Several years ago my middle son came down wrong on his foot during football practice - broke his toe bone, towards the middle of his foot and required orthopedic surgery and the instertion of a 3 inch screw. The point of the screw was to hold the bone together while new bone was formed to repair the break - he refused to use his crutches which caused the two ends of the bone to rub together therefore breaking up the new bone as it formed.

After much yelling by me, his regular doc, his foot ball coach, his grandparents, his surgeon and just about everyone else, we finally convinced him to use the crutches, I think the kicker though was that he lost an additional 2 weeks out of his Sr. year of football because he didn't use them to begin with. Then a year later he had to have the screw removed because it caused issues while he runs track (he is a jr. in college and runs on a track scholarship).

The point is - his foot ached and was swollen, but he could and did walk on it.

My Mother broke her foot years ago - she fell out of the back door onto the patio (don't know all the details, but there was a dog involved) - it was swollen and bruised and hurt for weeks, but she didn't go to the doctor. This was about 6 or so years ago - her foot still swells and aches because she didn't have it taken care of. An x-ray a year later, for an unrelated injury showed that it had been broken and that it didn't heal correctly - at that point there was nothing they could do for her, she is stuck with it the way it is for life.

If you can't (or won't) go to the doc - I would suggest wrapping the toe tightly, tape it to the adjoining toe, elevating it often and staying off of it as much as possible. Some ibuprophen will help for the swelling and aching - but be careful how much you take - too much can cause kidney issues. Your best bet is to see a doctor and have it x-rayed, he may not be able to do much with it, but it might save you issues down the road.

Sorry to hear you are hurt - I hope it gets better soon.

Conoga
12-22-2008, 06:21 PM
An x-ray a year later, for an unrelated injury showed that it had been broken and that it didn't heal correctly - at that point there was nothing they could do for her, she is stuck with it the way it is for life.

If you can't (or won't) go to the doc - I would suggest wrapping the toe tightly, tape it to the adjoining toe, elevating it often and staying off of it as much as possible.

dang! i have to wonder how many people might have done similar things and ignored them in that way.
i dont have insurance right now so i'm going to take care of it myself like you said. a moment ago i promised my cousin to go with her to look at a house. i think i'll just stand around while she looks... when my brother was in the national guard he did so much marching that the bone in his heel broke. so now i'm concerned that... if it isnt broken or fractured then it might become so if i keep moving around :P


i'm glad i asked this question though!! like i said i have no personal experience in this area and honestly felt stupid for even asking. everyone has been more than helpful though.
i appreciate all of your replies!
i'm lucky all i did was hurt my toe. when i tripped i was holding a pane of glass in one hand :s4: but it didnt break and i didnt get cut :th_doh: so in truth i'm more than happy that the worst thing that happened was an injured toe!

Stapes
12-22-2008, 06:33 PM
Dresser drawers dropped on your foot, and tripping holding a pane of glass?! Sounds like you lead an exciting life! Hope we didn't all scare you with all our tales but I figure you wouldn't have asked if you didn't want to know. Hopefully if you take it easy you'll be fine.

kyorrrl
12-22-2008, 07:49 PM
A fracture and a break are exactly the same thing. both mean the bone has snapped. usually the fracture is a medical term used primarily by professionals. broken is the vernacular term.
I don't know exactly what doctors do for fractured toes but i work in an operating room and can say that i rarely see ortho surgeons operating on toes.

i think that as long as you ice it off and on, elevate it, and stay off of it as much as possible it should heal on its own. however if it doesn't start to feel better in 2 to 3 days you need to have it looked at. See if your community has a urgent care or walk-in type clinic as those are usually more cost effective if you dont have insurance. most likely however if you take care of it, it will heal on its own. Also up your calcium and protein intake, if it is fractured more protein will help it heal quicker and calcium will help the bone to heal cleaner.

KT

Beckie
12-22-2008, 08:09 PM
foot injuries are the pitts,
like you i have never broken a bone in my body,
untill a birthday night out with my best mates,

i looked amazing, so i thought ,right down to my ,strappy shoes.
on the way home i went over on my shoe owwwwwwww,
hobbled home didnt think much of it till next morning,
ooooch ,tried to get out of bed,i couldnt bleeding walk,
after my best mate sarah stopped howling with laughter(i was sleeping in her bed )
i had to explain to my dh why he so had to come pick me up .

2 hours later i was in a and e going for x rays
id broke my metatarsel bone(sure ive spealt that wrong)
anyway i had a shoe thing on my foot that was really ugly ,and even after i started to recover,i was having to crawl around the floor to get anywhere not very ladylike lol

the moral of this story is WEAR SENSIBLE SHOES!!!!!

you think i learned from this nooooo i looove shoes im just more careful now lol:biglaugh:

Mackalena
12-22-2008, 09:06 PM
Poor Baby Blue!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm sorry about your owie!

I broke my little toe during my child's toddler phase. Lack of sleep made me a bit senseless.... DH left a large box in the hall. I actually walked right into the corner of it and YOWZA! I was seeing stars. Hard to breathe when things hurt that much!

The outcome was that the doctor said "yep its broken. Get more sleep". I taped the toes together but it just hurt.

So sorry!! Hope it stops hurting soon. :sad3:

kentspumpkin
12-22-2008, 09:22 PM
well maybe we have more in common then just our names, lol. i myself have done some of those crazy dances. LOL
well most of the time they dont do much for toes. tape it to the one next to it, will be the best thing if you are not going to go to the dr. also closed toed shoes and elevate it as much as possible to keep the swelling down.
:wno:i broke my toe on thanksgiving 2000. it was icy outside and i slipped and fell while walking into the grocery store for a last min. thing. i had open toed heels on. :skeptical: i know i know what idiot wears open toed heels in freezing weather, that would be this idiot, LOL.:snick:

Maria
12-22-2008, 10:06 PM
Hey BlueCoyote, I hope your toes are feeling better. My advise from my own experience, is to tape your sore toes together, ice and elevate your for foot. If you experience more pain and the swelling gets worse see your doctor. Lots of hugs sent your way.

Pyxie
12-23-2008, 01:32 AM
Aww BC, sorry to hear about you toe. :sad1: I have broken almost every toe on both feet. No, I'm not normally a klutz, serious competitor in gymnastics when I was younger.

Anyway, if it's your toe (not a bone in your foot) there is nothing that can be done about it. It doesn't matter if it's a break (full break through the bone, and usually rare with toes) or a fracture (this is usually just a crack in the bone). If you are positive it's your toe and not a bone in your foot, there would be no need to get x-rays, save yourself the medical co-pay. Your doctor will tell you to tape it tightly to the next largest toe, elevate it often and swallow advil. unfortunately, broken toes can't be casted, and since there is constant weight on them it will take several weeks to heal. But if it is taped well, you shouldn't feel too much pain. Hope you feel better soon!!!

Conoga
12-23-2008, 11:56 AM
Thanks again everyone, and no its just the big toe, middle joint. thank Heaven it isnt the foot itself, though i have no idea why not considering how i landed.

i had a teacher in high school that broke her ... tibula? maybe it was a fibula.. was in her foot.. she fell off the bleachers at a basket ball game. got her foot or leg put in a boot and had to roll around in a wheel chair for a long time.
funny and sad thing was everyone was actually HAPPY about it.. she was like Umbridge from Harry Potter.... even looked and acted like her.
i felt bad about her getting hurt but only for a short while. she started asking students to push the chair around or fetch things for her. ugh!

celticgal
12-23-2008, 12:43 PM
From what I have experienced, broken means that it is broke all the way thru and I believe fracture is like a "hairline fracture" "twig fracture (that one looks like a tree with limbs)" I've had both at the same time - so I feel your pain!!

For the toe, you can get it xray'd don't know if they will do anything but provide a walking cast - if that. I broke my big toe and they did nothing for it...

Suggestion, tape it to your other toe (if possible) and wear a shoe to protect it - preferable a shoe that doesn't bend to easily. Elevate it (yeah right - this time of year and with kids...) put ice on it and take some tylenol or advil or aspirin not only to keep the pain down but the swelling as well.

Hope it mends fast for you!!!

Conoga
12-23-2008, 02:04 PM
hmm, most of my shoes are leather, and soft leather at that except for my rubber mud boots.... lol they're the next best thing to a leg cast!

my kids have noticed me walking funny and now they're doing the same.. sheesh!:skeptical:

alba
12-23-2008, 09:14 PM
I broke my toes when i fell down the stairs at my niece's at the time it was a lot of pain puffy and black & blue i got ice on it right away as soon as the swelling went down the toe was very loose kind of stubby so I knew it was broke the only thing I had to do was tape it to the buddy toe for 3-4 weeks.