Healing from Turf Toe Can Take Time

Key player Davante Adams of the Green Bay Packers has a toe problem. It’s hard to tell from reading articles in the press how long he’s going to be sidelined. But from what we know about turf toe here at Foot & Ankle Associates of Cleveland, it could be quite a long time before the wide receiver suits up again.

What is turf toe?

In simple terms, turf toe is a sprained toe. Anyone can get it, but it’s especially common among athletes who play football, soccer, or other sports on artificial turf. We see sprains of this type in wrestlers, gymnasts, and dancers as well.

The location of this particular type of sprain is always the joint at the base of the big toe. If a player jams his foot hard against the ground, the big toe can hyperextend upward, stretching the soft tissues at the joint further than they normally go. That hyperextension may be a mild overstretch (grade 1 sprain), one or more small tears in the tissue (grade 2 sprain), or a complete tear of the tissue (grade 3 sprain).

A grade 3 sprain might also include fractured sesamoid bones and cartilage damage. An injury like that can take several weeks to heal and may even call for surgery. That would certainly be bad news for a pro football player at the beginning of the season.

Turf toe treatments

A grade 1 sprain might heal quickly with RICE:  rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Podiatrists Dr. Megan L. Oltmann and Dr. Craig B. Frey might also:

  • take x-rays to determine the severity of the sprain and to rule out any broken bones
  • immobilize the joint with tape
  • prescribe a walking boot
  • recommend physical therapy
  • perform toe surgery

Recovery from turf toe can take time, but with the help of our expert podiatrists, you should be able to return to the activities you love with no problem. For top-notch podiatric care in Cuyahoga, Summit, Portage, and Geauga Counties, call us at (440) 903-1041 for an appointment at our office in Solon, Ohio.