Pain on the top of your foot can be excruciating, making it difficult or impossible to walk even a few steps.
Assuming there is no visible injury, and you can’t attribute the pain to falling, twisting your ankle, barefoot running, or dropping furniture on your foot, the cause could be anything from an ingrown toenail to Gout. A podiatrist would have to do a thorough examination to determine the specific cause, but here are the most common reasons you might have pain in the top of your foot.
Your shoes have quite an affect on the health of your foot. Shoes that are too tight, including athletic footwear, can cause Nerve Entrapment – also known as a “pinched nerve”. Repeated pressure on one area irritates the nerve and can cause a surprisng amount of pain. Ice, rest, and a change to less constricting footwear should resolve the pain.
The arches in your feet are meant to absorb the shock of running, walking, and standing. When the arches fall and you suffer with flat feet, the tarsal bones can become compressed, which leads to damaged joints, bone spurs, and irritation. The top of your foot may be slightly swollen, have red spots, and pain will increase with activity. Improper footware is one of the main causes of this condition.
Metatarsal Stress Fracture
Stress on the metatarsal bones (the five long bones in the front of the foot) can cause tiny cracks in the bones. This is a very common injury for athletes, dancers, and those who return to exercising after a long layoff.
The Extensor Tendons lie just under the skin on the top of the foot. Their job is to pull the toes up away from the ground, and when they become irritated, the pain can be excruciating and often confused with a fracture. The most frequent cause of this complaint is once again, footwear that’s too tight.
Other reasons for pain in the top of the foot may include
- Bone spurs
- Ganglion Cyst
- Aging (arthritis)
Pain on the top of the foot could indicate a mild irritation to your nerves or tendons from tight shoes, or a more serious condition. If rest, ice, and over the counter anti-inflammatory medications do not relieve the symptoms, call East Penn Foot and Ankle Associates for an immediate examination. We will determine the cause of your pain and create a customized treatment plan for you.