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Struggling with ball of foot pain?

January 16, 2023

Pain around the ball of your foot? Does it feel like you’re walking on a pebble? Do your toes feel numb? If you’ve answered ‘YES’ to any of these questions, then it’s time to see a Podiatrist.

Pain around the front part of your foot (the forefoot) is a very common problem that people seek help from a Podiatrist for. Let’s talk about it.

What Causes Forefoot Pain?

There are several causes of forefoot pain. The most common we see is called Morton’s Neuroma.

Morton’s Neuroma is an irritation of the digital nerves that travel between your long metatarsal bones. This causes pain, numbness, and tingling in the balls of the feet that can radiate into the toes. It is most common between the 2/3 and 3/4 metatarsal bones, affecting the 2/3/4 toes.

There is also a fluid-filled sac called a bursa that sits between the metatarsal bones. This bursa may also become irritated and inflamed, adding to the symptoms of Morton’s Neuroma. This is often referred to as intermetatarsal bursitis.

Why Does Forefoot Pain Occur?

Morton’s Neuroma is most likely to present around ages 40-50 and is more common in females than males. There are many reasons why you may develop a Morton’s Neuroma, including:

How is Forefoot Pain Diagnosed?

Morton’s Neuroma can often be diagnosed by clinical presentation. Clinical presentations vary, but will often include one or several of the following symptoms:

Your Podiatrist will perform a clinical examination and may find the following signs that indicate Morton’s Neuroma:

Your Podiatrist will also observe your footwear and how you’re walking to determine what could be causing your forefoot pain.

Imaging may also be used to diagnose a Morton’s Neuroma. Ultrasound is accurate for diagnosing Morton’s Neuroma. X-ray will not show a Morton’s Neuroma but may be used to rule out other bony conditions.

How Can I Improve My Forefoot Pain?

The first step to improving your forefoot pain is to book an appointment with a Podiatrist! Your Podiatrist will conduct a biomechanical assessment including watching you walk and performing a set of functional exercises. From there, they will develop a management plan with you and guide you through your treatment options. Treatment for forefoot pain may include:

Forefoot pain is a condition that is well-managed with conservative treatments and rarely involves surgical intervention.

Book a Podiatry Appointment

If you’re ready to take the first step in treating your forefoot pain, book an appointment online or call us (02) 6771 9142. We’d love to help you walk away from foot pain!