Tuesday, 18 April 2023 00:00

Treatment Options for Turf Toe Injury

Turf toe is an injury that affects the base of the big toe, which is termed the first metatarsophalangeal, or MTP joint. It occurs from repeatedly overstretching that joint. This is a common injury among football or soccer players, and dancers who frequently overextend the MTP joint with the heels raised.  Turf toe is considered to be a toe sprain, and ignoring it can be detrimental to continuing your sport. Resting the toe is essential, but more serious treatment options may be required in order for the MTP joint to fully heal and activity to resume. A visit to a podiatrist may involve ultrasound or electric stimulation techniques, as well as prescribing non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication to reduce pain. In many cases, being fitted for an orthotic shoe insert may be deemed necessary. In extreme cases, surgery is recommended to repair any tears, fractures, or other joint damage. For a proper diagnosis of your turf toe sprain, along with an appropriate treatment plan, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist. 

Toe pain can disrupt your daily activities. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Mark Gagnon of Advanced Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Causes Toe Pain?

Most severe toe pain is caused due to a sports injury, trauma from dropping something heavy on the toe, or bumping into something rigid. Other problems can develop over time for various reasons.

Toe pain can be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Trauma
  • Sports injury
  • Wearing shoes that are too tight
  • Arthritis
  • Gout
  • Corns and calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Blisters
  • Ingrown toenails
  • Sprains
  • Fractures (broken bones)
  • Dislocations

When to See a Podiatrist

  • Severe pain
  • Persistent pain that lasts more than a week
  • Signs of infection
  • Continued swelling
  • Pain that prevents walking


In many cases the cause of toe pain is obvious, but in others, a podiatrist may want to use more advanced methods to determine the problem. These can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.


Treatments for toe pain and injuries vary and may include shoe inserts, padding, taping, medicines, injections, and in some cases, surgery. If you believe that you have broken a toe, please see a podiatrist as soon as possible.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Crestwood, Orland Park, and Summit, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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