Metatarsalgia Treatment in Bellevue, NE
Metatarsalgia, also known as stone bruise, is painful foot inflammation typically felt in the ball of your foot (metatarsal). Other areas that may be impacted are the metatarsal head and just behind your big toe. The intensity of the pain is not necessarily consistent, and it may only be felt in one or two toes, or it may be felt in the whole foot or even both feet. Pain may intensify when you are standing, walking or running. There is often swelling, but contrary to the name, there isn't typically any discoloration of your toes or feet. You may also experience pain when you flex your feet.
Metatarsalgia is generally considered to be a foot condition that comes with overuse. So it is most common among people who are very active, or athletes involved in high impact sports that involve a great deal of running, jumping and intensive training. However, it is also a common condition among middle aged women.
There are small toe nerves in between the metatarsal bones in your feet, and, if two metatarsals are being pressed together, the nerve in between can become inflamed. A few specific situations that can cause this include:
- Shoes that don't fit right
- A high arch
- Wearing high heels
- Various foot deformities
- Unusually shaped feet or toes
- Being overweight
- Stress fractures
- Morton's neuroma
The symptoms of metatarsalgia can be sudden for people who are highly active or athletes who go through intensive training sessions. However, most of the time, stone bruise is a gradual onset. Some of the most common symptoms include:
- Sharp shooting, arching or burning pain in the ball of your foot
- Sensation of having a rock in your shoe
- Pain that intensifies, especially when walking barefooted or on a hard surface
- Numbness or tingling in the toes
Metatarsalgia Diagnosis and Treatment
Your healthcare provider will likely want to perform a physical exam of your feet to check for swelling and pain. There may also be a great deal of testing, which can include:
- X-rays to check for stress fractures in your feet or toes, or to check for physical deformities in the bones of your feet and toes.
- An ultrasound to check for conditions such as bursitis or Morton's neuroma.
- An MRI may be performed to check for issues such as arthritis, circulatory conditions or a biomechanical imbalance.
- A blood test may be taken to rule out diabetes and arthritis
- A gait test, which may include walking on a treadmill or pressure plate to check which parts of the foot may be experiencing unusual stress, and whether or not this is being exacerbated by musculoskeletal issues.
Most of the time, metatarsalgia can be treated by putting ice on the areas of your feet where you are feeling pain. Over-the-counter pain medication is also an option. Shock absorbing insoles, metatarsal pads, and arch supports may help to alleviate or reduce pain during and after physical activities. In extreme cases, steroid foot injections and foot surgery may be suggested by your healthcare provider. In such cases, your healthcare provider will discuss these options with you at the time of your appointment.
Request more information about metatarsalgia treatment today. Call (402) 289-8839 or contact Dr. Chad Summy online.
Foot and Ankle Specialists