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Toe injury on the trail.

? I am a 57-year-old male runner and recently fell right at the end of an 11-mile trail race. I felt tremendous pain in my left foot for a couple of minutes, and then I was able to hobble hobble

leather straps fastened around the pasterns of horses, mules and donkeys. Placed on all four legs and pulled together by a rope, it provides an effective means of casting the horse.
 the 200 or so meters to the finish. I developed bruising bruising

discoloration and actual hemorrhage at the site of injury, and a serious disadvantage in the meat trade. In the first 12 hours after injury the bruise is bright red, at 24 hours it is dark red, at 24 to 36 hours it loses its firm consistency and becomes watery and at 3 or
 in my big toe big toe
The largest and innermost toe of the human foot.
 (with some blood under the nail) which two weeks later is nearly gone. However, I can sense that I am not able to "toe off" properly when I run. While attempting a few stride-offs recently I was unable to generate much force from the left foot. Can I continue enjoying easy-paced runs and expect the toe to heal itself, or should I take time off in order to allow faster training in the future?

Tony Salinaro, Antioch, CA

A tendon tendon, tough cord composed of closely packed white fibers of connective tissue that serves to attach muscles to internal structures such as bones or other muscles.  tear or possible fracture needs to be ruled out first. The inability to toe off warrants a detailed examination and radiographs. Unfortunately, I wouldn't recommend any further running until you are evaluated.

Jerry Katz, DPM (Documents Per Minute) The number of paper documents that can be processed in one minute. , Randallstown, MD

My concern with your lack of "toe off" is injury to the flexor flexor /flex·or/ (flek´ser)
1. causing flexion.

2. a muscle that flexes a joint.

flexor retina´culum  see entries under retinaculum.
 tendons, which push down on the big toe. Check the strength of the toe by pushing it down against your hand, then compare it to the right big toe. You can also put the joint through its range of motion (without resistance) and compare that to the other foot. If all is equal without pain, you can gradually return to running at pre-injury intensity. After runs, I would ice the toe for 10 minutes. If these tests reveal that the toe isn't functioning properly, certainly seek medical attention.

Robert Hallivis, DPM, Annandale, VA

Please note that Clinic responses frequently appear as excerpts of longer answers, especially when the inclusion of two full answers would result in redundant information.
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Title Annotation:The Clinic
Author:Hallivis, Robert
Publication:Running & FitNews
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Sep 1, 2004
Previous Article:The racer's edge: are faster sprints among the benefits of active recovery?
Next Article:Heal my heel.

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