Metatarsalgia Specialist

Nashville Podiatry

Podiatrists located in Hendersonville, TN & Nashville, TN & Gallatin, TN

Metatarsalgia is a common condition that causes joint pain in the ball of your foot. To find out the cause of your foot pain, visit Nashville Podiatry in Gallatin, Nashville, and Hendersonville, Tennessee, for an exam. The team of podiatrists offers effective conservative solutions for metatarsalgia so you can get back on your feet, pain-free. Schedule an exam today by calling the office or booking online.

Metatarsalgia Q & A

What is metatarsalgia?

Metatarsalgia is the medical term for pain in the metatarsal joints located near the ball of your foot. Metatarsalgia is commonly found in the second, third, and fourth toes though it can be isolated to the first toe. It typically occurs on one foot at a time, though it’s possible to experience symptoms in both feet.

What are the symptoms of metatarsalgia?

Metatarsalgia causes pain in the ball of the foot along with:

  • Swelling
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Pain with specific activities or footwear

Walking or standing for long periods, running, and wearing tight or restrictive footwear can aggravate metatarsalgia symptoms.

What causes metatarsalgia?

Metatarsalgia develops when there is a misalignment of the joint surfaces between the bones in your feet. This may be caused by a variety of issues, including:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Hammertoes
  • Loss of fat tissue in the sole of the foot that occurs with age
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Stiffness of the joints of the foot

Over time, misalignment of the joints can cause the protective cartilage between your joints to wear away, leading to more pain, swelling, and inflammation. If you experience symptoms of metatarsalgia, it’s best to seek treatment early to reduce the risk of chronic pain and disability in the future.

How do podiatrists diagnose metatarsalgia?  

Diagnosing metatarsalgia involves a foot exam at Nashville Podiatry. Your provider visually examines your feet for signs of flat foot, hammertoes, and other bony deformities and then performs a physical exam to assess the joints of your feet. The physical exam involves pressing on areas of your foot and moving your joints through their range of motion by hand.

If your provider suspects arthritis or an infection, they will order X-rays of your foot to determine the amount of joint damage. Based on their findings, the team explains your diagnosis and options for treatment.

How is metatarsalgia treated?

In most cases, the best treatment for metatarsalgia is custom orthotics to support the ball of your foot and better align your metatarsal joints. It can take several weeks for the pain to decrease by wearing orthotics alone, so your provider may recommend alternating the shoes you wear, icing your feet, or taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) medications to relieve your discomfort.

Don’t suffer from foot pain or metatarsalgia any longer, call Nashville Podiatry or book an appointment online now.