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Toe Fracture


A toe fracture

is a break in a bone in your toe.

Foot Anatomy

Common signs and symptoms include the following:

  • Pain, redness, swelling, or bruising
  • Not being able to bend or move your toe
  • Not being able to walk or put weight on your toe
  • Toe is bent at an angle that is not normal

Seek care immediately if:

  • Blood soaks through your bandage.
  • You have severe pain in your toe.
  • Your toe is cold or numb.

Call your doctor if:

  • You have a fever.
  • Your pain does not go away, even after treatment.
  • Your toe continues to hurt even after it has healed.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Treatment for a toe fracture

may include any of the following:

  • Buddy tape, elastic bandage, or a splint may be used to support your toe in its correct position. Buddy tape means your broken toe and the toe next to it are taped together.
  • A support device such as a cane, crutches, walking boot, or hard-soled shoe may be needed. These help protect your toe and limit movement so it can heal.
    Walking Boot
  • Medicines may be given to prevent or treat pain or a bacterial infection.
  • Closed reduction is used to move your bones back into place without surgery.
  • Surgery may be needed if the bone is out of place or the toe joint is damaged. Wires, pins, or other hardware may be used to keep your bone in place while it heals.


  • Rest your toe so that it can heal. Return to normal activities as directed.
  • Apply ice on your toe for 15 to 20 minutes every hour or as directed. Use an ice pack, or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover it with a towel before you put it on your toe. Ice helps prevent tissue damage and decreases swelling and pain.
  • Elevate your toe above the level of your heart as often as you can. This will help decrease swelling and pain. Prop your toe on pillows or blankets to keep it elevated comfortably.
    Elevate Leg

Follow up with your doctor as directed:

You may need to return in 2 to 4 weeks. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Toe Fracture (Ambulatory Care)

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.