Dr. Berg's Foot Facts

Posts for tag: metatarsalgia

You want to get out and enjoy our wonderful weather, but it feels like your walking on hot coals or pebbles. Ouch!

As a Seattle podiatrist, I don’t think you’re from a weird cult or strange. The pain and pebble-like feeling means you probably have a condition called metatarsalgia (pronounced (met-uh-tahr-SAL-juh). I know it sounds bad, but don’t worry it’s a common foot problem.

Metatarsalgia is an inflammation of the ball of the foot and many things can cause it. In addition to the pain and the pebble in your shoe feeling you may also experience tingling or numbness in your toes and a sharp, shooting pain particularly when your feet are flexed.

You’ll likely notice it more when you’re active and less so when you lay off your feet.

What Causes it?

  • Having a high-arched foot or a very long bone in your toe.

  • Running or another high impact sport particularly if you haven’t done it in a long time.

  • Foot conditions such as bunions, hammertoes, stress fractures, and Morton’s Neuroma can make it more likely to happen.

  • Women - shoes that are too pointy, too high, or with a tight toe box.

  • Men – rigid-soled work boots

  • Wearing flip flops too often (no shock absorption)

  • Working on hard surfaces – cashiers, construction workers, road workers

What Can Be Done To Treat It?

Depending on the cause there are a variety of ways to treat it.

  1. Make sure your shoes are supportive and not worn out. Check out my video “How to Test Any Shoe for Stability” before you shop.

  2. Wear the right shoe for the activity you engage in. eg. Court shoes for tennis, running shoes for running

  3. Rest – as hard as this may be to stop your favorite activity, you’re going to need to sit out the next family hike to heal

  4. Apply ice several times a day

  5. At the podiatrist’s office – depending on what I find when I examine you I may recommend a metatarsal pad to take the stress off the ball of your foot. In addition, if you have poor biomechanics I’ll likely recommend either an over-the-counter shoe insert or I’ll make you a pair of custom orthotics.

If you have ball of foot pain, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

Your free foot book "No More Foot Pain" is waiting to be sent to your home.

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

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By Dr. Rion Berg
February 08, 2018
Category: Neuroma

Have you developed pain in the ball of your foot? Many of my patients tell me their pain has come on suddenly and they weren't necessarily engaging in any physical activity such as running or hiking. 

Ball of foot pain occurs where the toe bones join the metatarsal bones. It can occur in one spot or all across the ball of the foot. Most commonly it's localized to one area. There are many causes of ball of foot pain, but the first step is evaluating the foot to determine where it is and whether any specific activities have contributed to it.

Some things that can cause ball of foot pain are:

  • Athletic activities

  • Amount of time you're on your feet

  • Types of shoes you're wearing

  • Mechanical instability of the foot

  • Tight calf muscles

Once we establish the diagnosis we can apply a treatment that will relieve your pain immediately. Following this we can design a treatment plan designed to prevent reoccurence of your ball of the foot pain.

Remember pain in the foot in not normal. Early evaluation and treatment can help resolve your ball of foot pain.

Other Resources
Neuroma
Metatarsalgia
Sesamoiditis

If you have ball of foot pain, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

For more information about heel pain in runners download our eBook, "The Complete Guide to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

Follow Dr. Berg on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+

As an active person you prize the time when you can take a stroll in your neighborhood, go for a hike through Discovery Park, or join in with friends for a walk around Green Lake. Then you wake up one day and feel like you're walking on razor blades. Immediately you wonder if you're going to need to stop your much loved activities.

As a Seattle podiatrist with over 30 years of experience, I'm here to let you know you don't need to worry. Every foot problem has a solution. Even the feeling of walking on razor blades.

So what could be causing this problem?

It all depends on where you're feeling the pain. Is it located under the heel of the foot, the side of the foot, the ball of the foot, or more specifically between the 3rd and 4th toes?

Here are some guidelines for identifying the most likely foot pain culprit.

Pain Under the Heel of Your Foot

If you feel pain under the heel of your foot, particularly when taking first steps in the morning, you most likely have plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis or heel pain frequently develops in people who have flat feet, are active, have tight calf muscles, or wear unsupportive shoes. Pregnant woman or people who are overweight are also likely to develop it as a result of increased pressure on the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is the band of tissue that runs from the heel under the arch and connects into the base of the toes. When this tissue gets inflamed you develop plantar fasciitis.

Pain in the Ball of Your Foot

If you feel pain in the ball of your foot you most likely have a condition called metatarsalgia. This condition develops most often in people who have a high arched foot, participate in high impact sports, have a job requiring long hours of standing on hard surfaces, or are overweight. The pain often shows up on one or more of the five bones or metatarsals in the mid part of the foot.

Pain On the Side of Your Foot

If you're experiencing pain on the inside of your foot at the base of your big toe and you have a bump, you probably have a bunion. Although bunions aren't hereditary the foot type is. Flat feet are known to put people at higher risk of bunions and flat feet run in families. Tight, pointy, and high heeled shoes can also make bunions worse.

Pain on the outside of your foot just above the heel of your foot may be cuboid syndrome. People at most risk have high arches, tend to roll their feet over the outside of the foot, and have tight calf muscles.

Pain Between the Third and Fourth Toes

Another common condition called Morton's Neuroma shows up as pain between the 3rd and 4th toes. Women are eight to ten times more likely to develop this condition. Common causes are tight pointy and high heeled shoes, abnormal foot structure, trauma, and high impact sports.

All of these conditions have conservative treatment options.

Call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. Often same day for emergencies and less than 2 weeks for chronic foot pain. You can also request an appointment online.

Free Foot Books

Download any one of my free foot books.
"No More Foot Pain"
"The Complete to Stopping Heel Pain in Runners".

In addition, our newsletter "Foot Sense" comes out monthly.  You can also check out our past issues. Every issue contains a mouth-watering recipe and can be printed out for easier reading!

Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.

Follow Dr. Berg on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+

 

 

By Dr. Rion Berg
April 10, 2015
Category: Bunions
Tags: orthotics   metatarsalgia   capsulitis  

Pain under the ball of the foot and second toe can occur for several reasons. Recently a friend returned home from a trip to see her mom. Her mother had been complaining about pain under the ball of her right foot directly beneath her second right toe. After seeing pictures of her mom's foot and understanding the symptoms I was able to formulate a possible diagnosis.  

Causes of Pain

Bunions or the bony protuberance that forms on the side of the big toe joint can be very painful and can also cause other problems with the foot. In the case of my friend's mother, she clearly has a bunion which has shifted her second toe and became a hammertoe. Hammertoes can cause the toe to lift placing undo pressure on the ball of the foot and can also cause pain at the top from rubbing against shoes.

Another condition, metatarsalgia occurs when one of the metatarsal bones (the toe bones) becomes inflamed and painful. Causes of metatarsalgia can include arthritis, foot injury, working long hours on hard surfaces, and certain types of rigid-soled footwear.

Capsulitis is a painful condition that occurs when the ligaments surrounding the toes becomes inflamed. If this condition goes untreated it can lead to dislocation of the toe. The most common cause is faulty foot mechanics where the ball of the foot beneath the toe joint takes on a lot of weight-bearing pressure. In addition to having a bunion, other foot problems that can cause capsulitis are a second toe longer than the big toe, an unstable arch, and tight calf muscles.

Treatment

Although treatment varies for each of these conditions, they all will be helped by wearing supportive shoes and an insert or orthotic.

If you feel pain in the ball of your foot or under your second toe, make an appointment today at the Foot and Ankle Center of Lake by calling 206-368-7000 or requesting an appointment online.