What is Metatarsalgia?
Metatarsalgia is a general term that is used to denote pain occurring on the top or the ball of the foot. It is a condition associated with a number of different foot conditions and thus has a number of different causes.
Causes of Metatarsalgia
Such causes include obesity, pregnancy, flat feet, poorly fitting footwear that prevent proper foot function. Such footwear includes high heeled shoes and too narrow shoes. Thin soled shoes provide little protection for the sole of the feet and can contribute to metatarsalgia. Other causes including old age and diseases such as diabetes that cause thinning of the fatty padding at the ball of the feet may predispose to metatarsalgia. Injury, stress fracture, arthritis, callus formation and Mortons Neuroma may also be causative factors. Thus a thorough examination is required in order to ascertain the cause of the metatarsalgia.
Treatment for Metatarsalgia
Treatment options vary and may include debridement of any callus formation, prescription orthotics, shock absorbing insoles, advice on properly fitting shoes. When nothing else works, surgery may be required.