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First Aid & Emergencies

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Broken Toe Treatment

Symptoms of a broken toe include: pain, swelling, bruising, and difficulty walking.

1. Prevent Swelling and Further Injury

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  • Stay off the foot as much as possible.
  • Avoid movement or pressure that causes pain.
  • Apply ice up to 20 minutes at a time. Wrap it in a towel; do not apply directly to skin.
  • Keep the foot elevated as often as possible, especially the first 2 days after injury, to help control pain and swelling.
  • For pain, take acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin).

2. Get Help

  • If you have severe pain, can’t walk, the toe looks bent or deformed, or the pain lasts for a long time, see a doctor.

3. Follow Up

  • Stay off your foot and avoid activity that causes pain for 3-4 weeks.
  • Wear a solid shoe with a stiff sole to protect the injured toe and keep it stable. Avoid shoes that put pressure on the toe.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by David Zelman, MD on March 18, 2013

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