7 Contributing Causes of Metatarsalgia


Where the three middle toes (metatarsals) intersect at the ball of your foot is an area that is under a tremendous amount of stress and pressure during walking and exercising. The condition called metatarsalgia is the result of Inflammation and damage that can cause severe pain and discomfort. Metatarsalgia has symptoms similar to neuroma, so be sure to see your foot doctor for the proper care. 

7 contributing causes of metatarsalgia may include the following: 

  1. Wearing improperly fitted shoes—Always wear properly fitted shoes with a wide toe box. Custom orthotics can help to relieve stress and pressure on the metatarsals.

  2. Hairline fracturesStress fractures in your toes or other bones of the foot can cause radiating pain into the ball of the foot, exacerbating metatarsal problems.

  3. Being severely overweight—The ball of the foot is a main contact point with the ground when you walk and exercise, and being obese increases the stress and pressure with every step.

  4. Foot neuromaThis is a growth of fibrous tissue around a nerve. It often occurs between the metatarsal bones in the ball of the foot.

  5. Hereditary influence—The propensity to develop metatarsalgia has a genetic component and people who have inherited flat feet are more likely to develop metatarsalgia. When your second toe is longer than your big toe, it can also increase the chances.

  6. Athletic pursuits—Participants in high-impact sports like football, tennis, soccer, and basketball are more likely to develop metatarsalgia.

  7. Various types of arthritis—can exacerbate metatarsal problems. 

Initial treatments for metatarsalgia consist of resting the affected foot and getting properly fitted and supportive footwear with orthotic inserts to redistribute pressure away from the ball of the foot. 

If you have pain in the ball of your foot, see your foot doctor for the proper diagnosis and treatment. Call Achilles Foot and Ankle Surgery, PC located in Martins Ferry, Ohio and St. Clairsville, Ohio, as well as Wheeling West Virginia. With access to advanced technologies, Dr. Bruce G. Blank and his staff can help you manage all of your foot and ankle conditions including heel pain, ankle sprains, toe deformities, fungal toenails, and plantar warts. Call 740-633-4188 or make an appointment online today.