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Author Topic: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!  (Read 1059 times)

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Offline InTheMoment

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Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« on: February 24, 2014, 11:04:07 AM »
I was getting a pedicure yesterday and noticed something upsetting.  I typically take a quick look at my toe nails when I get a pedi, because it's really the only time I see them without polish.  It had been a while (2 months?) since my last pedi and I don't remember if I looked and/or noticed anything the last time, so I don't know how long this has been there.

Basically, there's weird discoloration on my pinky toenail, on the inner part (next to the other toe, not on the edge of my foot).  Most of the toe has a darker (reddish?  tannish?) discoloration, with one area that is a bit darker.  The nail tech said it looks like a bruise.  I took the polish off that toe when I got home and my husband also said it looks like a bruise.  The thing is, I don't remember specifically doing anything to bruise it and it doesn't hurt.  It's quite possible that I stubbed it or something (I do this often) and I just don't remember it happening or hurting. 

How can you tell if it's just a bruise or something like melanoma (I know the under-nail type of melanoma is rare, but still...).  I did clip a part of the nail and when I looked at what I clipped off, the discoloration was definitely on the underside of the nail.  The discoloration looked reddish and didn't come off.  The area of skin that that was under that part of the nail looks normal.  Right now there's only a teeny tiny bit of nail left (I have small toenail beds).  Can you bruise your nail without knowing it or having it hurt?  What do I do?
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Offline InTheMoment

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2014, 01:57:44 PM »
Anyone?
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Offline Slangevar

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2014, 04:27:52 PM »
If it's a bruise, it will grow out in a few weeks. It recently happened to my husband (he didn't feel it either) and I had to painfully wait to see if it would grow out. It did.

(If you go to the doc, they'll tell you the same thing... wait 3 weeks to see if grows out. If it doesn't, come in.)
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Offline Kimdrah

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2014, 04:32:23 PM »
This might sound crazy, but press it and see if the it kind of turns white and when you let go the redness comes back to it.
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The Dalai Lama,was most surprised by Man.He sacrifices his health to make money. He sacrafices money for his health,he is so anxious about the future so he does not enjoy the present, he does not live in the present or the future,he thinks he will never die, then he dies having never lived.

Offline InTheMoment

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2014, 05:01:11 PM »
I don't think it blanches with pressure, actually I'm pretty positive it doesn't.  It's also SOOOO tiny because it's my pinky toe and my nail beds are miniscule.  This afternoon I gently ran the edge of tweezers under the nail to see if any of the brown would dislodge.  I don't  notice a difference when looking at my toenail, but there were some small flakes of brownish stuff that came off the tweezers when I wiped them on a cotton ball.  Sounds like it could be dried blood?

Also -- the fact that it was on the underside of the nail itself (after I clipped) and not the nail bed is a positive thing, right?
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Offline Kimdrah

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2014, 05:05:49 PM »
Sounds like nothing. And just to tell you if u saw the black line I have vertical on my big toe you would likely pass out. Lol. Ironically it's nothing but permanent damage to my nail bed.
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The Dalai Lama,was most surprised by Man.He sacrifices his health to make money. He sacrafices money for his health,he is so anxious about the future so he does not enjoy the present, he does not live in the present or the future,he thinks he will never die, then he dies having never lived.

Offline InTheMoment

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2014, 06:55:29 AM »
I think what has me worried is 1) there's a very clear, straight line of demarcation where the discoloration (bruise?) ends.  Most of the toenail is a light tan, with the exception of a vertical strip of normal nail color on the outer edge.  Also, there is a (horizontal) band of dark that runs most of the way along the far edge of the nail (I think it lines up with the light tan below it).  From that dark band to the most proximal (closest to the cuticle) it is the tan color. This tan goes all the way to the cuticle (where the nail originates, not the sides).   

I don't specifically remember hurting it, but I stub my toes all the time.  If I hurt it a few weeks ago, don't you think I would have seen some normal color nail growing in by now?  Why would the light tan go all the way to the cuticle?

Edited to add:  I know toenail melanoma is uncommon and MOST happen in the big toe or thumb, so the odds are small.  For whatever reason, despite a good run, I am freaking out about this one.
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Offline InTheMoment

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2014, 12:06:43 PM »
Oh boy.  I can't seem to shake this and it's getting more and more worrisome to me.

I know I should give it some time before I see a doctor.  Right now, the whole thing is less than 0.5 cm x .25 cm -- stupid small pinky nail.  Besides, my husband is changing jobs in the next week or so and we'll have new insurance in 2 weeks.  I need to wait, but I'm in such a panic.
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Offline Titomca

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2014, 12:39:39 PM »
I was in your situation a few months ago. I had a brown " bruise" looking spot in one of my toes. The second to be exact after my big toe. Anyways it took a whole 3 months for it to grow out. In the meantime i spent countless hours worrying and checking my toe nail everyday, several times a day. I even took pictures of it every week or so to see if it had change at all.  Very slowly I started noticing a drift outwards on the bruise. It eventually went away and now my nail is clear. When I first noticed it I went to see a dermatologist who sent me  to have a biopsy done because I do have family history of melanoma. A week or so before my biopsy app, my nail had already cleared, so I called to cancel.
All i can say is hang in there and try not to worry. We bang our feet so many times and sometimes we dont even remember.  My dermatologist told me that sometimes bruises can be caused by things like shoes that are too tight, or in some cases ( jogging) frequently can cause it too.
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Offline karachondria

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Re: Toenail bruise or nailbed melanoma? Urgh!!
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2014, 01:48:01 PM »
This has worried me too.  4 nails on my left hand have turned purpley red. I'm thinking it's stain from nail polish. Don't know.
Could be dry blood like you said.  Melanoma is pretty uncommon this could be anything. It might be a bruise I think it's pretty likely to be a bruise. Some bruises I've had didn't hurt. Wait and see if it goes away and see a doctor if you're worried but think about how many of us on this forum have believed we had melanoma and not one of us did have it :) good luck
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