Toe and Forefoot Fractures

The forefoot is the front of the foot that includes the toes. Fractures occurring in this part of the foot are painful, but very often not disabling. There are 2 types of fractures namely, traumatic fracture and stress fracture. Traumatic fractures occur when there is a direct impact of your foot on a hard surface. Stress fractures are tiny hairline cracks in the bone, most commonly caused due to repeated stress. The common symptoms of toe and forefoot fractures include pain, bruising, swelling and inability to walk.

To detect toe and forefoot fractures, your doctor conducts a physical examination of the foot, and may order X-rays to identify the location and severity of the fracture. Toe and forefoot fractures can be treated by the following ways:

  • Rest: Adequate amount of rest can sometimes help heal a traumatic fracture.
  • Immobilization: Splints, casts, braces, rigid shoes (stiff-soled shoe) or buddy taping (fractured toe is taped to the adjacent toe) may be suggested to immobilize and allow the bone to heal.
  • Surgery: Your doctor realigns the fractured bones using pins or screws to hold the bones together in place until they heal completely.

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Credibility Links

  • The Arthroscopy Association of North America (AANA)
  • Broward County Medical Association
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • Florida Orthopedic Society