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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2009
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    PA
    Posts
    673

    Default Horse took off my toenail... now what?

    Not kidding. He stepped on my foot yesterday while I was wearing my Wellies. Normally I'd be fine... he's stepped on my feet dozens of times and I've never been hurt. But something felt strange and when I took off my sock in the tackroom but entire big toe's nail was off! I couldn't believe it!

    So now I have the nailbed covered with a bandaid and triple antibiotic ointment and am wearing only flip flops. >_>

    Is there anything I can do to help it heal without leaving it open? It's so tender I can't have anything touching it at all. Even having a blanket over my feet, with the band-aid, is ouchy. I know I ought to keep the ointment on it to keep it clean, plus it has a pain reliever in it. But will it heal quickly/properly if it's moist like that? I can't find much information...



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep. 25, 2005
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    The Land of the Frozen
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    Default

    This happened to me! Not fun. Mine grew back perfect, like brand new. I soaked it in Epsom salt water every day and kept it bandaged with soft cotton gauze. Bandaids didn't work because it was too much pressure. With the gauze, you could puff it out a little, then tape it higher up on the toe so it was covered but the material wasn't squished down on the wound. I was in a walking cast though because of all the other damage done to the foot besides the toenail.

    I had to sleep with my foot out of the covers so the blankets weren't pressing down on it. Also had to let the foot hang off the end of the bed so there was no pressure on the heel. The whole foot was smashed and I remember the first couple of weeks being difficult to sleep.

    If the pain is really awful, you can get a nerve block done. I ended up having that done and they injected a long acting anesthetic into the foot in a couple of places.

    Ibuprofen is good for pain.

    Those puffy microfiber socks are nice because they're loose fitting.

    What are you doing for shoes?



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2009
    Location
    PA
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    673

    Default

    Flip flops for now. I have soft tennis shoes and those rubber boots I can wear at the barn. Still not sure how my riding boots will feel.

    I'm using the Band-Aids made for knuckles actually. They work really well because the have the four little pieces that I can wrap around my toe keep the pad right over my nailbed. It's not too much pressure either.

    When were you able to leave the bandage off for a bit to let it get some air?



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep. 25, 2005
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    Well its hard to say because my whole foot was a big pile of mush (bruising, hematoma, swelling, missing toenail, broken bone) and I was in a walking cast for 6 weeks. So whenever I was home, I ended up leaving the foot totally open and propped up a lot just because it was so painful for anything to touch the foot at all.

    So remind me again why we like horses so much???? LOL!



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 30, 2009
    Location
    CA to Costa Rica to WI
    Posts
    735

    Default

    Been there done that, except I only lost about 80% of my nail. I knew I was going to lose it as soon as I got stepped on, so I taped it up (nail on all) for as long as I could to give the (healthy) nail a chance to grow out as much as possible before the rest fell off.

    It hurt like hell, but I left the bandaid off for an hour every day. Half an hour in the morning, half an hour in the evening. Then I increased that as I could stand it. It seemed to get really gross if I kept it too closed up. But then again, I was a teenager and probably didn't take the time to clean it like you have.

    For shoes, I was in tennis shoes in 2 days. I went to a high school that required uniforms and got away with the flip flops for 2 days. (Teacher: "Why are you wearing sandals?" Me: "A horse stepped on my foot and my toe nail came off! Wanna see!?!?" As I reach down for the bandaid It worked for two days. ) Anyways, then I put a bandaid over it, covered the bandaid in nice fluffy cotton, tape around the cotton, then nice fluffy sock. It hurt, but was tolerable.

    Good luck! Oh, and my nail came back fine, but it took a while. The first grow out was all wonky, but it's fine now.
    Proud member of the "I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday" clique

    Fourteen Months Living and Working in Costa Rica



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 23, 1999
    Location
    South Coast Plaza
    Posts
    20,252

    Default

    Reminder for teatnus shot if you're not current. This happened to me in 2001, hurt like a mofo on and off for a good week; kept it covered with gauze pads for the first week and light tape over it so it stayed clean. Mine only came partway out and doctor had to pull out the rest (didn't have the balls to do it and when it was done realized nothing was as painful as initial whomp). Your nail may or may not grow back; mine did but was somewhat smaller.
    EDDIE WOULD GO



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2009
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    673

    Default

    Anyone ever get an artifical nail for on while the real one grows back? How long to do you have to wait to do that? Because I would assume you need to have atleast some bit of nail to attach to the fake one too. I'm so annoyed, I just bought new flip flops and painted by nails Sunday night!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov. 4, 2003
    Location
    Sanger, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,748

    Default

    Hi,

    Had one removed (ingrown) by a foot doc. Took an old pair of tennies,
    cut out the area where the end of the big toe rested so there was no pressure on the toe. Worked well for me.
    Julie
    www.centaurfencing.com
    Safer, Stronger, Lasts Longer!
    Godspeed BARBARO--Run fast and free!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 23, 1999
    Location
    South Coast Plaza
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    Default

    OP, redo you nails the same shade of red as where the missing nail was and no one will notice. That's what I did, worked just fine.
    EDDIE WOULD GO



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 18, 2003
    Posts
    4,410

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by katie+tru View Post
    he's stepped on my feet dozens of times and I've never been hurt. But something felt strange and when I took off my sock in the tackroom but entire big toe's nail was off! I couldn't believe it!
    I can't believe you let your horse step on you that often. You've gotten good advice on how to deal with the toe. But I'd also recommend that you deal with your horse, and teach to stay out of your space.

    Hope your toenail grows back OK.
    __________________________
    "... if you think i'm MAD, today, of all days,
    the best day in ten years,
    you are SORELY MISTAKEN, MY LITTLE ANCHOVY."



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov. 8, 2007
    Posts
    942

    Default

    Duct tape and windex.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug. 24, 2007
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    838

    Default

    I lost mine in a similar fashion - I wish I had the same success story as the others. I now have a frankentoe with a gross toenail that will never be right. Huge bummer....



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    1,783

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by islgrl View Post
    I lost mine in a similar fashion - I wish I had the same success story as the others. I now have a frankentoe with a gross toenail that will never be right. Huge bummer....
    My frankentoenail took about 8 years to finally look 90% normal after being stomped by a shod TB. It still isn't quite back to the way it was, but it can pass for normal if I keep it polished.

    When mine was torn off I used sandals (not good since I was the BM and had to keep working), ice, elevation when possible, and a tetnus booster. After the swelling subsided in a couple days I was able to put on a pair of soft athletic shoes. I was back in boots in about 2 weeks.
    "Is it ignorance or apathy? Hey, I don't know and I don't care." ~Jimmy Buffett



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct. 20, 2008
    Posts
    100

    Default

    Guess I was lucky, popped the big toe nail off and hurt like a son of a *&^%$, I had some vicodan left over from something and it was wonderful. Wore sandels and the nail came back perfect.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2003
    Location
    Charlotte, NC, USA
    Posts
    551

    Default

    OWWWW!!! All I can say.
    Pamela Ellis



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep. 18, 2009
    Posts
    29

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BabyGreen View Post
    Duct tape and windex.
    HAHA.... I feel like i'm watching my Big Fat Greek Wedding! Windex is a cure for everything! LOL LOL

    This happened to me one summer. Thought nothing of it at first. There was just a crack at the end of the nail near the nail bed. When it started to get puffy I soaked it in HOT HOT soapy water two-three times a day. Damn thing got infected and I had to go to the ER to get the toe nail removed (my mom's a nurse and it was quicker to do it that way).

    Long story short..... It took awhile for the toenail to grow back but it did. It does hurt for awhile but soon enough your toe will start to harden up alittle bit. Not all toe nails grow back (sorry to scare you). Mine grows back with a nice little bump in the middle now .



  17. #17
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    Feb. 7, 2005
    Location
    Lancaster, PA
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    Default

    It should grow back just fine as long as the root isn't damaged. However, I had the same thing happen and the nail grew back all weird. The podiatrist removed it twice and it kept coming back that way, so I had it removed permanently (they kill the root so it no longer grows). Over time the nail bed toughens up. This was years ago and I'm pretty much used to the look of it now, but I don't wear sandals very often.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan. 17, 2008
    Location
    New England
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    Default

    My toenail on the left foot (big toe) is half hanging off due to the pony. I paint the hell out of it, and you can't notice. One side is starting to grow in and the other isnt hurt or damaged, so I would rather not subject myself to chinese toe torture and rip it off.

    The nail salon said they put acrylic fakies on all the time for people who are missing or lost a toenail. Thats creepy to me, but if I had a wedding or something to go to, with sandals, I suppose I would. It can be done. I guess some people's never grow back, so they glue a fakie right to the skin. Also, as someone mentioned, you can paint the toe skin (when it is not sore anymore or open) like a nail and no one will be the wiser.

    Pony was nice enough to stop on my OTHER big toe last weekend while refusing to get on the trailer. Apparently he felt the right big toe was jealous.
    mykidshavefourlegs.blogspot.com



  19. #19
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    Sep. 25, 2005
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    The Land of the Frozen
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    Default

    Oh yeah, the nail polish! I did the same thing - painted the hell out of it while it was growing back. You couldn't tell unless your head was right at toe level, and of course that was rarely a concern. LOL The paint wears off the skin very quickly so you have to keep painting it every day or so but it works.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2009
    Location
    PA
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mp View Post
    I can't believe you let your horse step on you that often. You've gotten good advice on how to deal with the toe. But I'd also recommend that you deal with your horse, and teach to stay out of your space.

    Hope your toenail grows back OK.


    Correction, I don't let him. And I should've phrased that as I've had my feet stepped on dozens of times over the 10 years I've been riding, by various horses. It happens. Sometimes they slip, sometimes you edge too close to them. Sometimes my horse is a smidge clumsy.



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