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Lead pencil struck my foot

by Alan
(Jersey City, NJ)


puncture wound of foot

I had this sharp lead pencil pierce maybe 1 or 2mm through my foot. When I felt the pain, I immediately pulled back. There was a black mark deep under the skin, no blood. I tried using the needle to probe that as if it was lead, but either it went further inside or it was just the color left by the lead. Anyways, I came home and my friend tried to probe it again a few hours later with another needle but could not find. This time a tiny amount of blood was there due to needle probing. I applied the liquid bandage as I did not wanted to get infected. Next day went by fine without me noticing anything. After 2 days, today I noticed a shining heart shape yellow skin happening around the wound. First thought it must be caused by the liquid bandage. But when I tried to peel off, there was no liquid bandage to peel off. It is my actual skin which is shining. I tried to press the wound area and I can feel a tiny pain. Should I be worried? Pics are attached which were taken at the time of writing this question. Thanks


RESPONSE

Hi Alan,

The problem here is that I have know way of knowing if there is any lead in your foot or not. The problem, as you can guess, is that lead can break off readily easily so in a best case
scenario you may have no lead or a very small piece.

The fact that you do not feel much pain does not tell me one way or the other whether there is still lead in your foot, it just tells me that if there is lead in your foot, it is probably a very small piece.

Is that a reason not to be concerned? No it is not. If there is even a small piece of lead in the area it could become infected.

Most infections occur 36 to 72 hours after introduction of a foreign body and I know by your narrative that at least 48 hours have passed.

If the yellow heart shape discoloration you mention is not from the liquid bandage then it might signify a reaction to a foreign substance in your foot.

You and your friend can probe all you want with a needle, but I would say a foot specialist would be much better adept at probing the area and removing a foreign body if one exists.

If there is a small piece of lead in your foot, your probing may end up pushing it further into your foot and if there is no lead in your foot, you may just make matters worse and end up with an infection.

My suggestion would be to put some antiseptic on it like Neosporin or Bacitracin, cover it with a bandaid and make an appointment with a podiatrist.

Marc Mitnick DPM
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