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Doctor insights on: Why Are My Toenails Blue

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Why is my big toenail dark blue from the cuticle up? About 6 weeks ago, my toenail started getting a dark-blue spot. My sister, who is a nurse, told me it might be raynaud's syndrome, a bruise, or a sign that my toenail is regrowing itself a replacement.

Why is my big toenail dark blue from the cuticle up? About 6 weeks ago, my toenail started getting a dark-blue spot. My sister, who is a nurse, told me it might be raynaud's syndrome, a bruise, or a sign that my toenail is regrowing itself a replacement.

First : First of all, let me thank you for posting pictures! it will make any answer given here more accurate and informative. Given the well-defined margins in the picture, it's unlikely melanoma. But... Since the incidence of melanoma has skyrocketed, out pacing any other form of cancer, and given that melanoma is a particularly deadly cancer, the safest advice i can give you is to have the nail bed biopsied. It's no big deal to do this, and won't keep you off your feet, and you'll rest easy knowing you're ok. In my 32 years of practice, I have seen melanoma in the foot only twice, but in each time, it was under the big toenail. Also, a nice benefit from having your nail bed biopsied is the toenail needs to be removed in order to do it. If it's just a collection of blood under there, removing the toenail will clear it, and you will re-grow another nail that will look just as lovely as your nail used to look before this black thing showed up. A podiatrist or dermatologist can do the biopsy. Please have this done. Good luck! ...Read more

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Dr. Arnold Beresh
340 doctors shared insights

Toenails (Definition)

Toenails are the hard coverings at the end of the toes. Nails are made out of a protein called keratin. They function to protect the end of the toe and to increase sensitivity of touch. Good nail care is important to prevent ...Read more


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What's the reason why my toenails are black and blue underneath?

What's the reason why my toenails are black and blue underneath?

Bruised...: They probably had some sort of trauma causing a bruise under the nail plate, most likely from rubbing in the shoes. This should grow out with time. ...Read more

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Why is my big toenail black and blue at the cuticle? It hasn't changed in weeks and I can't recall any serious trauma to that area.

Why is my big toenail black and blue at the cuticle? It hasn't changed in weeks and I can't recall any serious trauma to that area.

See a doctor: My concern here is whether this is a bruise or something else. If you can't recall any trauma or wearing tight shoes, perhaps this is not a bruise. Melanomas can arise under the nail. Please see a doctor for an examination. ...Read more

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What causes black and blue toenails?

What causes  black and blue toenails?

See a podiatrist: If you are runner, this is a common injury called "black toe syndrome" due to blood bruises under the nail plate. Other causes of black toenails are infections - either bacterial or fungal. Another cause may be from a fracture in the last bone of the toe. In any case, see a podiatrist who can examine and treat any of these conditions and recommend ways to prevent recurrence. ...Read more

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Both big toenails discoloured, blue looking; right one particularly looks as though black streak in it. Slight pain but nothing major. What to do?

Both big toenails discoloured, blue looking; right one particularly looks as though black streak in it. Slight pain but nothing major. What to do?

Microtrauma: It sounds like your toenails are hitting the end of your shoe. This usually happens if the toe box is either too small (toe is pressed up against the end) or too large (foot is sliding around and the toe is hitting the end). This is very common in runners--it can lead to either thickening of the nail, or it may eventually turn black and fall off--a new nail will grow in within a year. ...Read more

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The skin under my toenails keep turning blue, why?

The skin under my toenails keep turning blue, why?

Could be many reason: If it is all of them it could be vascular, it depends on when it happens it could be pressure if the nails are pressing or the shoes, or your socks. To many possibilities to say. A picture would be helpful. I could do a consult or have them checked out. ...Read more

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What does it mean when your toenail turns black and blue?

What does it mean when your toenail turns black and blue?

Bruise: Normally it is dry blood from the nail having been traumatized (injured). The important thing is the area of discoloration should grow out as the nail grows out. If it does not grow out with the nail have it checked. It can take up to 9 months for it to grow all the way to the tip of the nail. ...Read more

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Impotence and blue toenails, what could i have?

Impotence and blue toenails, what could i have?

Blue toenails: Poor arterial circulation, same could apply to impotence- see internist or vascular specialist as soon as you can. ...Read more

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What can cause fingernails and toenails to turn blue?

What can cause fingernails and toenails to turn blue?

Possibilities: This could be from trauma (like bruising), vascular compromise (diminished blood flow), damaged nerves, or more specific conditions like raynaud's (usually associated with autoimmune diseases). Talk to your primary care physician first and a referral will most likely follow based on his/her findings. ...Read more

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If under my toenail it turns black and blue will the nail fall off?

If under my toenail it turns black and blue will the nail fall off?

Not necessarily.: No doubt there has been trauma to the toe and the bruise is trapped under the nail. Depending on how extensive the bruise is and the pressure it may have caused will make a difference as to whether you'll loose the nail or if it will quiet down after proper first aid. ...Read more

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My big toenail on both feet black and blue some pain what is this from?

Black and blue: A black and blue toenail is usually due to trauma to the nail usually when running in shoe gear. If the nail is completely black and blue you may need to have the blood that has developed under the nail drained if this is causing you significant pain. ...Read more

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What does it mean if my two big toenails are blue underneath now that i've started wearing tennis shoes and working. They also hurt.

What does it mean if my two big toenails are blue underneath now that i've started wearing tennis shoes and working. They also hurt.

Typically: It means you should trim back your toenails and look for better fitting shoes for your work. If it does not get better your doctor or a podiatrist may have some ideas. ...Read more

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Why toenail blood clot is blue?

Why toenail blood clot is blue?

What color did : You want? The blood congeels plus its under the opaqueness of the nail..... ...Read more

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My big toenail has turned dark blue underneath. Should i be worried about this bruise?

My big toenail has turned dark blue underneath. Should i be worried about this bruise?

Does it hurt?: did you recently injure it? usually blue is dried blood, sometimes fungus, a dangerous scenario would be a melanoma so if your not sure see a doctor. ...Read more

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On fri. I wore high heels for 5 hours& when I took them off& my toes under the toenail was blue. it's wed. and it's the same with pain. What do I do?

On fri. I wore high heels for 5 hours& when I took them off& my toes under the toenail was blue. it's wed. and it's the same with pain. What do I do?

Blue nail: After wearing high heeled shoes for a period of time, you may damage the nail bed that is underneath the nail from pressure applied to the toes from the high heels. This should go away after a while. If the blue color does not resolve itself, you may want to see a specialist in Podiatry. ...Read more

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What cause finger nails and toenails to turn blue?

What cause finger nails and toenails to turn blue?

Vasoconstriction: Vasoconstriction of the vessels can cause nails to turn blue. Known as raynaud's phenomenon, the constriction causes a loss of bloodflow in the area and improper oxygenation. The bluish color is described sometimes cyanotic. Another cause of blue nails can be from trauma due to a subungual hematoma (blood blister under the nail). ...Read more

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I'm 28 year old woman with tingling and pain in foot and toenails are white and blue and purple?

I'm 28 year old woman with tingling and pain in foot and toenails are white and blue and purple?

Be seen : It would certainly be wise to be seen, there are multiple potential causes. The most important to rule out would probably be any vascular insufficiency. An exam alone would likely go a long way in making the diagnosis. ...Read more

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How to get rid of blood clot under toenail after heavy object fell on it? Toenail is about 80% black and blue.

When : When a toe is traumatized by the nail, a small blood vessel underneath the nail can break and cause bleeding under the nail. Blood collects between the nail plate (the nail itself) and the nail bed (the soft tissue under the nail plate), and pressure from the blood can cause the nail plate to lift off the nail bed. The blood causes the discoloration, and the pressure causes pain. In more severe injuries of this kind, the bleeding is such that it will lift the nail plate so much and to cause the nail to come off. It can take a few days for the pressure to build up and lift off the nail. Once it does, if you can bear it, the pain subsides, since the pressure is relieved. If the injury is more minor and the bleeding is not so much, it might not be enough blood to force the nail up and off, in which case, it will take months for the blood under the nail to slowly grow out with the nail. If you're in pain, i recommend you go to your doctor, or even an er to have the blood drained. If the nail plate is fairly intact and not separated from the nail bed, drilling a small hole in the nail plate (it doesn't hurt) will allow the blood to drain. If the nail plate is loose, taking the entire nail off is the better treatment (done under local anesthesia, no pain, quick & easy, and you will regrow another nail). If you're not in pain and you just don't like the way it looks, you have 2 choices: 1) get medical attention to have the blood drained described above, or 2) get a pair of dark glasses so you don't have to look at it. Hope this helps! good luck. ...Read more

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