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Stabbing Toe pain After Toenail Surgery

by Rhonda

I had a partial toenail operation on Aug.2nd. It was doing fine and just a few days ago I have been dealing with some numbness at times in my big toe on the right foot and also at times I have a stabbing sharp pain. The Podiatrist did use a chemical to kill the nail root.This is my second surgery on this same toe. I am concerned why the pain will not completely go away.

Thank you,


Hi Rhonda,

Obviously numbness and pain are two different sensations and I am not quite sure where these symptoms are coming from. Both may occur in an
ingrown nail surgery .
My first concern would be a neuritis (numbness) where you had the injection to numb the toe. Sometimes, the needle actually hits the nerve and thus irritates it. If this is the case, in most cases it will eventually subside.
The sensation of pain on the other hand is something else. Yes, you may also have pain from the needle hitting one of the nerves, but pain may also be indicative of a problem in the surgical site itself.
The most common causes of pain could be, 1. not all the nail was removed and there is still some nail irritating the side of the toe. 2. the possibility of a reaction to the chemical that was placed in the nail area to kill the root of the nail. If phenol was used, this chemical kills the root of the nail via a chemical burn and it can hurt in some people. 3. the possibility of an infection, which will usually occur 36-72 hours after the surgery.
You had your surgery approximately two and one half weeks ago and by this time under normal conditions you should no longer have any pain.
My best advice is to call your podiatrist and insist he or she actually look at the toe to make sure there is no problem brewing.

Marc Mitnick DPM

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Apr 11, 2018
Toe numbness
by: Tosha

Can I possibly have a malpractice case due to nerve damage?

I am sure there is some lawyer out there who would make a case for you, but in most cases the nerve is damaged by the injecting needle actually hitting the nerve.
The standard of care is to insert the needle blindly so this does happen from time to time.
The good news assuming it was from the needle hitting the nerve, is that over time your symptoms should improve.

Marc Mitnick DPM

Nov 12, 2017
2 months post surgery pain
by: Mary

I had a part of my toenail removed from it being i grown in Aug 31st. I have been back to my podiatrist twice due to pain. The last time I went the pain had subsided st that appt. And doctor said toe looked great. It is now Nov 12th and the throbbing pain is excruciating. It is. It a 24/7 pain but it is every day at least 3-4 times and it is severe. I can’t keep throwing away money at the doctor’s office to hear nothing is wrong. My nail is becoming white in general edges and appears to be peeling towards the bottom. I often wrap it with gauze when wearing shoes to prevent rubbing and to give it support. Doctor said the nail is still a little loose on the side. Should I still be having such pain over 2 months post surgery??

No, you should not be having pain two months down the road. I obviously am only guessing here since I cannot examine you, but the fact that the remaining nail is white and peeling leads me to believe he may have used too much medication to destroy the growth plate of the nail that was removed.
Why not see another podiatrist in your area? The toe may not look so great to him.

Marc Mitnick DPM

Jul 30, 2017
Nerve pain
by: Anonymous

I had surgery to remove ingrown toenails a year ago and my toes hurt so bad. I feel nerve damage and my nails are bumpy and very ugly and crooked! I regret having this procedure done!

Jan 17, 2017
by: Sarah

I have same problem but it hasn't gone away in a year! It's always in horrible pain-hurts to wear shoes, but no redness, swelling, dis coloring, etc.

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