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Exposed Bone in Broken Toe - is amputation necessary? **Update**

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by rivers2011, Jun 12, 2011.

  1. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi all,
    I posted about my injured chick before (https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=6585903#p6585903)
    but just found out a few days ago that a bone in one of her toes has been completely severed and the end exposed.
    [​IMG]
    I tried treating with Penicillin but stopped after I saw this because I figured it's just going to get infected again unless the toe is amputated. Are my suspicions correct?
    She is the prettiest, sweetest little pullet and I really want her to live a long, happy life. If it looks like she'll do well without any medical intervention, then I'll keep her. If not, well, I've just posted a number of advertisements around the net (incl BYC), offering her for free to a good home that'll take her to a vet.
    Your input will be greatly appreciated!
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2011
  2. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 12, 2011
    Port Perry, ON
    edited
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2011
  3. Rocky Top Chick

    Rocky Top Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I have a buff that broke her toe and I had to amputate. After the amputation it looked similar to your meaning a scab with the bone in the middle. I wrapped for a couple of weeks but it never changed so I took the bandage off a couple of weeks ago and she is fine. Every once in a while I will pick her up and check it out. The scab is still there and I guess when it is ready it will fall off, however I can still see the bone in the middle. She seems fine and acts as if nothing happened. I am just going to let her be and let nature heal the toe.
     
  4. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    wow, amazing! i assumed that because the bone was exposed it would just get infected again and again! (and i assume it's swollen in the first place [the entire toe, right down to the joint where it meets the centre of the foot] because of infection)
    thanks for sharing!
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2011
  5. Have you tried neosporin? Topical antibiotics work better (afaik) on injuries like this, unless it becomes a systemic infection that requires internal antibiotics. I would keep it clean, use neosporin liberally, wrap with gauze (over the antibiotic) and then use vet tape to keep it sealed and clean. Once healing, I would think about blue kote (antiseptic and antifungal; colored blue so the others won't see blood). I also would keep her separate from the others until she was well enough to go back in, because they can make it a lot worse in a hurry. Good luck.
     
  6. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    OK- here's what's going to happen: Once a toe goes bad it does one of two things
    1) gets horribly infected, rots away both up the foot and down the foot, and kills the chicken with a case of sepsis (blood borne infection).
    2) gets infected but compartmentalizes, dries up, looks and smells bad for about a week, and then just falls off leaving a relatively clean stump behind.

    If your chicken has no other underlying health issues then chances are good that the problem will resolve itself with little intervention on your part. The toe will wither and fall off on its own. You can amputate if you are not sure of the overall health of your bird, but I am pretty sure that if the bird is in good health that the injury will heal on its own.

    My recommendation is to keep the site as clean as you can. Soaking the foot in straight Betadine/Iodine will help to dry the wound out. Whenever I have messy (oozing) wounds, straight Betadine works incredibly well to dry them out. A toe like the one pictured is going to fall off eventually, so the best you can do is to help that process along. Soak it for a few days, and as needed if it starts to look gooey. It will dry up. Once it dries it will fall off. You just need to prevent an infection from taking hold in the mean time.

    I am on the fence about antibiotic usage. I try to avoid them, but I am not against them by any means. You will need to be the judge of whether your bird needs them or not. They carry their own risks. I have used them in the past when I had evidence of an established infection, but I usually don't treat prophylactically. If you are using antibiotics, then you must remember to treat the bird with probiotics afterwards. A couple week course of organic ACV in the water and a couple tablespoons of yogurt each day for 2 weeks should re-stock all the gut bugs that will ensure good GI health.

    A protein rich diet will help your bird to heal quickly after an ordeal such as this. Some scrambled eggs, BOSS, and the yogurt I mentioned earlier will aid in healing. I have had birds lose toes in the past, and it was not a big thing. They survived and recovered quite nicely.

    I hope this helps. I hope your bird recovers quickly. Good luck.
     
  7. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 12, 2011
    Port Perry, ON
    Have you tried neosporin? Topical antibiotics work better (afaik) on injuries like this, unless it becomes a systemic infection that requires internal antibiotics. I would keep it clean, use neosporin liberally, wrap with gauze (over the antibiotic) and then use vet tape to keep it sealed and clean. Once healing, I would think about blue kote (antiseptic and antifungal; colored blue so the others won't see blood). I also would keep her separate from the others until she was well enough to go back in, because they can make it a lot worse in a hurry. Good luck.

    Quote:
    Can I ask what BOSS is?


    i'm lovin' all this new info!
    she has been kept in a separate tractor, but she won't eat any new foods incl yogurt and eggs...she only wants crumbles. i bought some duck starter because it's supposedly has higher protein...i think

    Would it be too much to soak her feet in a combination of iodine and epsom salt water?

    here are a few mmore pics, but of the bottoms of her feet. i dunno how on earth her seller at the market managed to get all these wounds on her, but because there are so many (two black toe tips, the one swollen toe with the bone sticking out, then two more toes with open sores on the undersides) my mother feels that they're coming from the inside out (eg from a bacterial infection. Is that a possibility?

    But, the little chick has been doing better since we got her. She used to have a big bald spot in her back end and I was freaking out cuz I thought she had lice/mites, but the feathers are growing in nicely. She is energetic.

    The only other weird thing is a large air bubble between her neck and right wing. I did a search of BYC about this air bubble and others have it as well but haven't found a clear answer as to causes and treatment

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Port Perry, ON
    and CMV,
    I saw your post about your terrible year for raising chickens. I'm so sorry you lost so much. Thank you for continuing to be a part of this forum and for being so helpful and generous with your advice.
    Hopefully future years will make up for this one.
     
  9. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    BOSS is black oil sunflower seeds. Even if your bird won't eat any of the other exotic foods, I assure you she will eat sunflower seeds. Higher protein is better as far as the feed goes.

    The soaks of epsom salts and betadine- sounds good.

    The air bubble is a ruptured air sac. I wonder what happened to this poor bird. She is all beaten up. You can drain the air from under her skin with a sterile needle being careful not to puncture anything else. You may need to do it several times before the air finally stays gone. Hopefully the air sac will heal and not cause any other problems.

    Thanks for the good thoughts, Rivers2011. Sometimes things just don't go well. I am having that kind of year. It will turn around soon, I'm sure
     
  10. rivers2011

    rivers2011 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 12, 2011
    Port Perry, ON
    okay, i'll go look for some BOSS...hehe

    out of curiosity, what causes a ruptured air sac? i'm about to go to the feed store and get a clean syringe, but i'm curious how on earth she got it. could it be from stress?
     

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