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Foot Bone or Joint Injury

Skiers Toe

Minute Read


Posted 4 months ago


Last updated: 04/12/2022


by James McCormack

What is a Skier’s Toe?

Skier’s Toe is bleeding under the bed of a nail that occurs from trauma to the Toe from something landing on it or, commonly in skiing, the repetitive impact of the Toe against a ski boot. The medical term for a Skier’s Toe is a Subungual Haematoma.

Picture of a person skiing

Symptoms of Skier’s Toe

Skier’s Toe causes pain, swelling and discolouration of the nail of the affected Toe. In the acute stages, the Toe may be red and painful before changing to darker black. Direct pressure to the Toe aggravates the symptoms, while tight fitting Ski Boots can worsen the symptoms of Skiers Toe.

Causes of Skier’s Toe

Skier’s Toe is caused by tight-fitting ski boots or ski boots that are too large. Tight-fitting ski boots cause pressure on the nail bed and cause blood to pool under the nail bed, while a ski boot that is too large can lead to excessive movement of the foot resulting in a repetitive impact of the nail against the ski boot.

What does Skier’s Toe look like?

Skiers Toe looks similar to Tennis Toe or Runners Toe; the Toe becomes black.

Picture of Skiers Toe

How to treat Skier’s Toe?

If you suspect you have a Skier’s Toe, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. Treatment is usually performed by a Podiatrist who releases the pressure from under the nail by removing some blood from beneath the nail. You should not attempt to carry out this procedure at home as there is a high risk of infection.

Once treatment is carried out and additional cushioning is applied to the nail, some cases may be able to return to skiing, but this should be discussed with your Podiatrist.

Physiotherapy with James McCormack

This is not medical advice. We recommend a consultation with a medical professional such as James McCormack. He offers Online Physiotherapy Appointments for £45.

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Foot Pain ChartBest Knee Brace for SkiingBest Metatarsal PadsBest Toe Separators – Best Bunion Correctors

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