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Red swelling on the skin just to the right of my toe nail
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Red swelling on the skin just to the right of my toe nail

Hello,

Two days ago on Monday morning, the area just to the right of my toenail on the big toe of my right foot started hurting. The skin was red and a bit swollen. I don’t know why it suddenly started up. I was in class like normal, with two pairs of socks on (because I’m always cold) and the same shoes I wear everyday, which feel a bit snug with two pair of sock. At around 10 am, it started hurting. By 11:30 am, it was very uncomfortable. Now that I think of it, I felt a little bit of discomfort at around 8 am on Monday morning.

I don’t remember having banged my toe anytime recently, although I did accidentally kick my stove last week, probably around Wednesday (seven days ago) in such a way that my toenail chipped a bit, but I clipped it off and it’s been fine since. I don’t think that incident was related to my current pain because I felt no pain until suddenly on Monday.

The only think different in my routine was that on Sunday evening, I ate a whole lot of sugar at a holiday party. I ate more cookies and cake than usual. I’m not sure if that was related to the pain on my toe that I felt Monday morning.

The region of my toe that is affected is pink and slightly swollen. I don’t think there is a broken bone because the affected region is not deep; it seems to only go down about .5 to 1 centimeter. The skin is slightly shiny in that area.

The pain is not bad, unless I wear shoes for a while. In that case, it really starts to hurt.

Do you have any idea what this could be? Is it serious? Are there any steps I can do to relieve the pain? Should I apply heat or cold?

Regards,

JMT

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563773_tn?1374250139
Hello,
I cannot confirm anything without examination but pain at the side of nail can be due to paronychia. It results from a breakdown of the protective barrier between the nail and the nail fold. Diagnosed by gram staining and KOH wet mounts from the skin and nail scrapings.

Treatment includes warm water soaks of the affected finger 3-4 times per day, oral antibiotics, topical antifungals and surgical intervention in more severe cases. My sincere advice would be to consult a dermatologist. It is very difficult to precisely confirm a diagnosis without examination and investigations and the answer is based on the medical information provided. For exact diagnosis, you are requested to consult your dermatologist. I sincerely hope that helps. Take care and please do keep me posted on how you are doing.


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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you for this message. I soaked it in warm water with table salt two days ago, it feels much better. I think that when I stubbed my toe last week, part of the nail may have caused a slight lesion in the skin that I had not noticed at the time, and that this led to an infection and swelling on Monday that has significantly gone down.

The only thing I can't explain is why the swelling and pain only showed up several days after I stubbed it. Maybe it was a delayed reaction; maybe the two were unrelated incidents.
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