Although that foot bump on your foot may not be pretty, you’re probably more concerned about the pain it causes, particularly when you wear shoes.  

So what is that bump anyway?  A bone spur, or osteophyte, can occur on top of your foot and other locations and can cause quite a bit of pain. Bone spurs occur most commonly near a joint and are often the result of osteoarthritis. But bone spurs can also be caused by too much rubbing, pressure, or stress from a tight ligament or tendon, causing the bone to overproduce in an effort to repair itself.  

Sometimes osteophytes go undetected for years, depending on their location. It’s often not until we experience pain from the spur that it is diagnosed, when our doctor visualizes it on an X-ray.

Heel spurs are osteophytes on the bottom or back of the calcaneus, or heel bone. These result from conditions such as plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis,  in which additional stress is placed on the plantar fascia ligament or Achilles tendon.  The bone can actually grow in response to the tight ligament or tendon, as the microtears in these structures repair themselves.

Other common causes of bone spurs include running and other sports activities, obesity, and poorly fitted shoes that cause friction on the top of the foot or at the heel.

Treatment of bone spurs depend on the location of the spur and can include supportive shoes, cushioning pads, orthotics and surgery.  

To find out more about that painful bump, call Dr. Rion Berg’s office at 206-368-7000 or request an appointment online.


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