Metatarsalgia… The ball of my foot hurts
Pain in the ball of the foot can be many things. Often it is the result of repetitive high pressure loading on the forefoot from sports activities. It can also be a slowly developing pain that arises over time from faulty foot mechanics that predispose a person to stress on the bones in the forefoot called metatarsals. If pain is the primary symptom we call it metatarsalgia. In some instances the nerve becomes irritated.
This condition is caused by a sensory nerve being pinched. This pinching usually results in pain between the third and fourth toes. Patients often describe that they are walking on a marble. Tight shoes can squeeze foot bones together making the pain worse. The nerve responds by forming a neuroma, a build up of extra tissue on the nerve. The neuroma results in pain that may radiate into the toes. Treatment usually involves wearing wider shoes and taking oral medications to decrease the swelling around the nerve. A pad on the sole of the foot to spread the bones is often helpful. The proper positioning is important.
As with the other foot problems we have referred to, physical therapies including Graston Technique, acupuncture, IMS, mobilization and orthotics can also assist with the pain. A correct diagnosis is essential.
Give us a call, because your feet shouldn’t burn or tingle!