# A freak accident

1. Aug 13, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

This morning, while walking around the house in stockinged feet, I banged my left big toe head on, full force, against the bottom rung of a ladder that my wife had lowered from the ceiling for access to our attic. That ladder comes down at a shallower angle than a normal ladder, and I apparently subconsciously misjudged the location of its bottom end.

The impact was square against the end of the toenail, which "flipped off" completely and cleanly in one piece, leaving the toe completely "naked."

When I took my sock off and saw what had happened, my wife managed to get an appointment for me at the doctor this afternoon. In the meantime, I left the toe as it was, just wiping away the bit of blood that trickled down the side of the toe. The rest of it congealed in place, where the toenail had been. I was surprised that there was no pain except of course at the moment of impact.

After the nurse cleaned the dried blood off (still no pain, but the surface was rather sensitive), the doctor took a look. He said it was good that the whole nail had come off, because otherwise he would have had to cut any remaining part off; that it would grow back eventually, and I just needed to apply Neosporin and keep it bandaged for a week or two. The nurse bandaged it up and gave me a tetanus shot just in case.

So now I'm sitting in a recliner with my feet up and the toe swathed in a big blob of gauze. It looks like I'll have to be careful while walking around, for a while. And I have the toenail as a souvenir!

2. Aug 13, 2010

### Monique

Staff Emeritus
Ew, that's strange that it came off just like that.. I twice dropped something heavy on my big toe and twice lost a nail because of it, like the doctor said: it will grow back

3. Aug 13, 2010

### turbo

Ack! Of course if that happened to me, the toenail would be my next favorite guitar pick.

4. Aug 13, 2010

### Andre

Wishing you a speedy recovery and maybe (new) glasses?

5. Aug 13, 2010

### cronxeh

Oh man that sucks. Similar thing happened to me, except I broke the ladder

6. Aug 13, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

Oh JT!! ouch!! I hope it doesn't start hurting tomorrow.

7. Aug 13, 2010

### lisab

Staff Emeritus
*shiver*

8. Aug 13, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

At least I have a bit more than a week before the semester starts and I have to get in front of a class again (a week from Monday). I can't really sit down for the entire class period because I usually spend most of the time working out examples interactively at the board.

It looked pretty gory while the nurse was cleaning up the dried blood. An intern came in and went "eww", and I had to reassure her that it looked a lot worse than it felt. I'm not looking forward to changing the bandage tomorrow. The inner layers are pretty red, but at least it doesn't seem to be spreading.

9. Aug 13, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

Keep applying neosporin, I swear there is nothing that stuff can't cure, IMO.

10. Aug 13, 2010

### Cyrus

Pictures!

11. Aug 13, 2010

### drizzle

http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-shocked016.gif

But you are really lucky, it's waaaaAAAY less painful than loosing only part of it [heck it took a whole month to recover, not to mention the daily pain! :grumpy:]

Haha turbo, you don't waste anything. My own advice is to let your wife wear HIGH heels!

Kidding, I would go with Andre's advice.

12. Aug 13, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

13. Aug 14, 2010

### Jimmy Snyder

Do I detect a hint of jeolousy in this post? Don't be getting any ideas Evo.

14. Aug 14, 2010

### BobG

It's a stubbed toe! How could you possibly be walking within a week when you have a stubbed toe?!

Between playing soccer and refereeing soccer, I once went about a year and a half straight either being in the process of losing one toenail or the other, or in the process of one growing back. That was kind of an unlucky stretch. That sort of thing happens once in a while, but three so close together?!

One was caused by a 13-year-old girl that somehow managed to come up out of nowhere and stomp on my toe in a game I was refereeing. Never even saw who did it. Just hear the high pitched, "Sorry" as I tumbled to the ground. Funniest part was when I quit tumbling I look up and the player with the ball and a defender are both sprawled on the ground, both looking at me to see what I was going to call. I was sitting there shocked, wondering what in the world I missed. After about a second, the offensive player realized there probably wasn't going to be any call, hopped up and started dribbling again, and away we went playing on through whatever the heck happened.

15. Aug 14, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

I changed the bandage for the first time tonight. It took a while get the old one off because the bottom layer of cloth was stuck pretty firmly to the exposed tissue that had been underneath the toenail. I dribbled warm water on it and peeled it away gradually and eventually got it all off without too much pain. When I was done it looked like I had taken my old toenail and painted it red.

When I applied the Neosporin it slid around on a thin film of blood. But the toe doesn't hurt except right on the surface which is still sensitive. There's no broader redness or pain or swelling. I still walk very carefully on that foot, but that's mainly because I can really feel it when the bandage slides around. After I get over this phase I should be able to walk normally.

16. Aug 14, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

They should have applied a shiny material that does not stick to the wound. Who are these heathens?

Yes, I have been to he ER for wounds so many times I qualify as an expert on wound dressings now.

Day before yesterday I feel into one of 2 holes they forget to fill and ripped off my thumbnail halfway down. HO&^%$* Mo*%@#$%^ of @*&%^ that hurt. But at least I have the bottom half attached.

Keep applying the neosporin. I had cats that had half of their faces rotting off that was regrown thanks to neosporin. Evo Child will confirm.

17. Aug 14, 2010

### OmCheeto

Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
18. Aug 16, 2010

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
Yuck!

Don't feel too badly, JT, you aren't the only physicist with a TOE problem.

19. Aug 16, 2010

### Office_Shredder

Staff Emeritus
Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
20. Aug 16, 2010

### cronxeh

Oh that was good :rofl: