Ball of Foot Pain
Pain in the ball of the foot, Metatarsalgia, is classified based on the exact location under the toes in which the discomfort is experienced. Capsulitis encompasses the entire ball of the foot. Sesamoid occurs directly below the big toe, and Morton's Neuroma targets the area below the 3rd or 4th toe. These conditions are classified as bruises in the joints that connect the toes to the feet. While onset is usually gradual, depending on the cause or degree of trauma, the pain can be sudden and severe.
In each of these cases, the main symptom is severe pain as it occurs in a general flexing zone. Inflammation and fibrosis of the nerves can cause certain types of pain in the ball of the foot. Shooting pain, stabbing pain, numbness, and general discomfort are all symptoms of the different conditions. Visual symptoms such as bumps are often not reported.
Regardless of the form of Metatarsalgia, the condition can be the result of arthritis, pressure, overuse, trauma, or previous conditions. These conditions can include bunions, calluses, hammertoes, and stress fractures. The root cause can also be the result of genetics such as short metatarsal bones.
Depending on the diagnosis of Metatarsalgia, a variety of treatments may be prescribed. Treatments such as prescription topical creams, oral capsules, injection therapy (to reduce inflammation), Theralaser therapy (to reduce inflammation), shockwave therapy, and finally custom orthotics.