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FOREFOOT PAIN

Capsulitis

Also known as a Synovitis. It is generally when the joint capsule becomes inflamed from some sort of trauma, producing extra fluid within the joint capsule/synovium, resulting in swelling and pain. 

 

Stress Fracture

Generally, repetitive stress with poor shock absorbency can cause a stress fracture. At this stage, it is not fractured, but due to the stress, the bone is weak and on the verge of becoming fractured. Initial treatment plan may involve rest / boot to offload and protect, correcting the foot biomechanics and footwear advice.

 

Morton's Neuroma

The foot consists of nerves which run between the long bones, supplying sensation to the toes. With excessive compression of the foot over a long period of time, the nerve can enlarge/thicken, causing burning, numbness and tingling sensation at the ball of the feet and towards the toes. 

 

Plantar Plate Tear

 The plantar plate is a thick ligament, which originates from the metatarsal head and attaches to the base of the toe bones, through the joint capsule within the forefoot. Its role is to help stabilise the metatarsophalangeal joint (MTPJ), protect from pressure and prevent hyper-extension of the toes. It may present as a 'floating' toe and painful around the ball of the foot, extending towards the toes.

Bunions

Medically known as a Hallux Abducto Valgus (HAV) - a big toe joint deformity. It is formed when the long bone (metatarsal) moves towards the centre of the body and the toe deviates towards the second toe, leaving a bony lump on the side of the toe joint. This widens the foot and due to rubbing on footwear, the skin can become irritated and inflamed. The deformity can cause arthritis and can lead to other foot problems.

Tailor's Bunion

Also known as 'bunnionettes'. This is bony lump on the outside of the foot, affecting the base of the 5th toe joint. It is very similar to a bunion of the 1st big toe joint. Factors such as ill-fitting footwear and biomechanical factors can affect the development of a tailor's bunion.

 

Sesamoid Injury

Two small bones sit beneath the big toe joint, within the tendon that runs towards the big toe. These bones are known as sesamoids. Sometimes with an injury, the area can become inflamed (sesamoiditis), fractured or even die if the blood supply is compromised (avascular necrosis).