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Does black and blue discolouration of toe indicate fracture post injury?

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Posted on Fri, 20 May 2016
Question: Last night i stubbed my toe. This morning it is black & blue. It is stiff but not swollen. Is it broken? Picture attached
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Answered by Dr. Kathy Robinson (23 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
here are some things to try

Detailed Answer:
Hello and thank you for your question.
It is hard to tell if your toe is broken by looking at the picture you have sent. It could be broken or just bruised.
Here are some things to try to help sort that out.
Wiggle your toes. If the injured one moves freely without much pain then it is less likely that it is broken.
Try touching the toe over the bones. If you find a spot that is extremely painful to touch then it is more likely that it is broken.
If it moves freely without pain and there are no extremely tender points when you touch over the bones, then it is most likely a bruise only.
If so just watch it over the next few days. If the pain gets worse or it starts swelling then you would need to see a doctor for an xray to make sure.
Let me know if you have further questions.
Dr. Robinson
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Kathy Robinson

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1989

Answered : 3535 Questions

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Does black and blue discolouration of toe indicate fracture post injury?

Brief Answer: here are some things to try Detailed Answer: Hello and thank you for your question. It is hard to tell if your toe is broken by looking at the picture you have sent. It could be broken or just bruised. Here are some things to try to help sort that out. Wiggle your toes. If the injured one moves freely without much pain then it is less likely that it is broken. Try touching the toe over the bones. If you find a spot that is extremely painful to touch then it is more likely that it is broken. If it moves freely without pain and there are no extremely tender points when you touch over the bones, then it is most likely a bruise only. If so just watch it over the next few days. If the pain gets worse or it starts swelling then you would need to see a doctor for an xray to make sure. Let me know if you have further questions. Dr. Robinson