Metatarsalgia often includes inflammation of the capsule structure surrounding one or more joints in the ball of the foot. This is commonly called capsulitis. There can also be inflammation of the lubricating fluid within the joint or tendons surrounding the joints, called synovitis or busititis.
- Burning or throbbing feeling
- Bruised tenderness type pain
- Pain usually comes on slowly and increases in intensity over a period of time
Diagnosis and Treatment:
This type of pathology is often misdiagnosed and therefore inappropriate treatment is given. A thorough assessment and clinical history is crucial in determining an accurate diagnosis.
The main cause of this type of pain is biomechanical overload or excessive pressure in the area. This usually is caused by feet that are out of alignment and not functioning correctly.
As an example if your car tyres are fitted without a wheel alignment there can be excessive wear on certain parts of the tread. This is the same for your feet. If your feet are not functioning in a correct alignment there is overload and compensation somewhere else.
When the transverse arch collapses there can also be overload under the metatarsal heads. This occurs because the metatarsal heads strike the ground out of sync to what they should be doing. So one or two metatarsal heads can be overloaded with pressure and subsequently become painful. This area can also progress to having a stress fracture in the bone.
The injured area needs to be off loaded. The first treatment option would be to fit a metatarsal dome to a pair of shoes which can help in distributing the pressures through the foot more evenly. The second option is through the use of a Cam Walker (Moon boot) to immobilize the foot to allow the area to be rested which encourages healing.
Once the area is healed the biomechanics or alignment of the foot needs to be assessed so the injury does not happen again. This is often achieved through the use of an arch support or orthotic.
Our podiatrists at the Kew Foot Clinic have the expertise in dealing with these issues of the feet and have products available if required at the time of your consultation.
We strive for excellence and successful patient outcomes. Don’t put up with sore feet, make a time to come and see us. Call us on 03 9853 6877 to make an appointment for the appropriate treatment.