Foot Conditions and Disorders

Why Metatarsalgia Is a Pain in the Ball of Your Foot

In most of my videos, I like to
discuss a very specific causes of foot pain. Today I'm going
get a little more general. My name is Dr. Andrew Schneider,
and I'm a podiatrist in Houston TX, Pain in the ball of your
foot can be due to a very specific reason, such as a
Morton's neuroma, capsulitis or a planter plate rupture.
In today's video, I will discuss pain in the ball of your foot due to
metatarsalgia. Before I get into it, Please like, share, and
subscribe to this video. Also, I wrote a book all about ball of
foot pain. You can get it for free at Metatarsalgia is the general term that is used
to describe an overuse injury causing pain in the ball of your foot. It causes
pain that could be described as sharp, aching, or burning.

pain worsens when you stand, walk, or run. This is
particularly true if you're doing so on hard surfaces.
The pain can occur for several reasons. First is excessive running or training. The ball of the foot absorbs shut
when you run. This can lead to development of metatarsalgia.
This is particularly true if your shoes don't fit well or are
old and worn. Certain foot mechanics can increase the
strain on the ball of your foot. This is the case with a high-
arched foot, where lots of pressure is placed at the ball of
your foot. It can happen if your second toe is longer than your
great toe, known as a Morton's toe Metatarsalgia can be
caused by a bunion or hammer toe deformity that increases the
pressure at the ball of your foot. Wearing certain shoes,
such as high heels or Western boots, put more pressure on the
ball of your foot. This can serve as another cause of
metatarsalgia. There can also be more significant causes, such as
a stress fracture of a metatarsal bone that weakens due
to repetitive and persistent pressure. To diagnose metatarsalgia,
I'll take an x-ray in the office.

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This will help to rule out some causes, such as a stress fracture.
I may also use a diagnostic ultrasound unit to assess the
soft tissue in the ball of your foot. Most cases of metatarsalgia
are managed without surgery. If you are getting pain during
exercise or activity, you may need to take a
small break until we're able to treat your pain. You also may
want to consider new running shoes and aware of the surface
that you're running on. Try to avoid harder surfaces, such as
asphalt and concrete. Ice is a natural anti-inflammatory
and is helpful to reduce the inflammation causing the ball of
foot pain.

Remember, however, not to use ice for more than 20
minutes at a time. The inflammation is causing your
pain can also be treated with anti-inflammatory medication.
I generally prescribe this medication to reduce the
inflammation in the ball of your foot. If you wear high heels,
it's helpful to lower the heel height. This will reduce the
pressure on the ball of your foot. If you have to wear high
heels, consider adding a metatarsal pad to add support to
the ball of your foot. Speaking of support, it is very useful
to have a custom orthotic made. The orthotic is a custom insole
designed to redistribute pressures of your feet and to
avoid any one area for being overloaded. A custom orthotic is
the best long term treatment for metatarsalgia, especially when
it's caused by your foot mechanics. There is no surgical
treatment metatarsalgia itself. If the pain in the ball of your
foot is due to a foot deformity, such as a bunion or a hammer toe,
surgery might be necessary to correct the deformity. In most
cases, the surgery will also resolve the Metatarsalgia that
results from it. Thanks for watching this video series all
about pain in the ball of your foot.

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Please take a moment to
like, comment, subscribe, and share on social media to help
others find the information they need. Don't forget to pick up my
free book about ball of foot pain at The link is at the top of the description below.
If you're experiencing pain in the ball of your foot or any foot or ankle
pain at all, give us a call at the office and we'll get you in
for an immediate appointment. The link is also in the description.
Thanks so much for watching and have a great day!.