Fact Check

Beware of Pedicures

Published Aug 4, 2015


NEWS:   A Facebook user reported a serious medical condition that resulted from a pedicure and necessitated the removal of a toe.

On 31 July 2015, Facebook user Shaela Leggett-Wilson of Lockhart, Texas, posted a rather shocking and graphic photograph of a infected foot (displayed above) which she stated depicted a serious medical condition that her mother had suffered as the result of a pedicure and which would possibly result in her mother's having to undergo surgery to remove all of her toes and part of her foot:

Ladies (and fellas) please take extra care when getting a pedicure. My mother's regular pedicurist quit her job, so Mom used someone else a few weeks ago. Now Mom is in ICU waiting to have surgery to remove all of her toes and part of her foot.

Shaela reported in a follow-up later that day that her mother was in the ICU at the Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center Poplar Bluff, Missouri; and on 3 August 2015 she advised readers that her mother had lost her big toe but (fortunately) not more of her foot:

Mom had surgery this morning after several days of IV antibiotics and a couple of pints of blood. They removed her big toe but were able to save the rest of her foot. She is still in the hospital and in a lot of pain, but she is in good spirits and is thrilled (her word) to be going home soon.

We haven't been able to contact Shaela directly (because she's been inundated with Facebook activity) to determine what other medical factors might have been involved here, but she ruled out one of the most common guesses by noting in a Facebook comment that her mother was not a diabetic (a group prone to foot complications). So it's unclear for now whether the deleterious result seen here has been definitively tied to the pedicure (or might have been incidental to it), what aspect of the pedicure might have produced this condition, or whether the problem was due to an unsafe practice on the part of the pedicurist.

Article Tags