A toe fracture is a break or crack in one or more of the bones in your toe. It may be just a bend or small crack in the bone, or the bone may break into pieces or shatter. You may have a break in several places or the break may be in a joint between the toes. Some fractures may stick out through the skin.
A broken toe is usually caused by twisting your foot or a direct hit—like when you kick a hard object or something falls on your toe. A fracture may also be the result of a medical condition that causes weak or brittle bones.
If you play a sport where you don't wear supportive shoes, such as martial arts, ballet, or gymnastics, you have a greater risk for toe injuries.
Symptoms may include:
Your healthcare provider will ask about your symptoms and how the injury happened. Your provider will examine you. Tests may include:
The treatment depends on the type of fracture.
With treatment, broken toes take up to 6 weeks to heal. You may need to do special exercises to help your toe get stronger and more flexible. Ask your healthcare provider about this.
Follow the full course of treatment your healthcare provider prescribes. Also:
Ask your healthcare provider:
Make sure you know when you should come back for a checkup. Keep all appointments for provider visits or tests.
Most broken toes are caused by accidents that are not easy to prevent. However, shoes that fit well and give good support can help prevent injury.