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Pain on the top of my foot

A few days ago I developed pain on the top of my foot. I went to the doctor and had an X-ray, which showed no fracture. The pain increases while I am sitting or lying down. It is also has a tender spot to touch. Today the pain started to shoot down into my big toe and even up my leg. It is unbearable! Help!


Hi,
If you are getting a "shooting pain" then it sounds like you have a nerve irritation of one of the superficial nerves that travels over the top of your foot.
If you did not originally see a podiatrist, I suggest you see one as he or she will be able to make the diagnosis and hopefully give you some relief.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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broken ankle with chronic pain

by Jean
(Boston)

Car accident 5 months ago, had surgery now presenting with chronic ankle pain and loss of range of motion. Doctors do not believe me. I am waking up and going to bed with pain. My whole leg aches. They refuse to treat my pain properly. Tylenol, Motrin does not touch it. I still can not walk properly on the ankle. I am losing my mind. I need advice. Please help!

Hi Jean,
Living in Boston, there is no shortage of doctors you can go to. Find yourself another doctor.
Have you had physical therapy? That should help reduce the pain.
Keep in mind, your ankle should not be totally pain free at five months. Most of these types of problems can take upwards of a year to resolve themselves.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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Big toe on left foot bruised, swollen to the top middle of foot

by Cleda
(Arkansas)

My adult son stepped on my foot two weeks ago. The nurse at work thought my left big toe is broken at the middle joint. The toe is swollen, bruised on front and rear of toe, and my foot is bruised to the middle of the foot over to my 4th toe area. I have worn a flip-flop type of shoe since the accident. Today I've worn a sandal with open toes; however, my foot is tingling, has turned darker blue on toe and top and side of foot. What do I need to do to relieve this? I've taken Advil since the onset of injury.

Hi Cleda,
Since it sounds like your symptoms are worsening you need to seek medical care. You will need an xray to see if there is a fracture (not guess there might be one) and you will need adequate treatment.
I will tell you this, wearing flip flops is probably the worst thing you could be wearing particularly if one of the bones in your foot is broken.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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Pain across all my toe's in both feet

by Ralph
(Billerica, MA.)

I have bone spurs (Hallux Rigidus) in both of my big toe's. Instead of pain just in the big toe's, I get pain that spreads across the entire top of my foot in the rest of the toe's. This usually happens during any kind of running or walking on uneven surfaces, such as a golf course. My feet are extremely painful after golf. Do the bone spurs cause all of this pain? I do not have gout, I wear custom designed inserts and with the appropriate amount of rest the pain subsides quite a bit. Can you suggest anything else I can do?

Hi Ralph,
Bone spurs in the big toe joint may cause pain along the entire forefoot simply because if the big toe hurts then it forces you into a somewhat different gait that can cause additional pain. In order to know for sure, you would need to be examined by a doctor.
Short of surgery other things you could try would be cortisone injections or perhaps physical therapy. Both of these treatments would probably give you relief but not for an indefinite period of time.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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healing without cast

I was hit by car while biking and fractured my foot. For a couple of days I followed RICE but then I went to work. My foot started to swell and I went to emergency room where an xray showed that I had a fracture. The orthopedic doctor ordered an MRI and I was informed that there is no additional injury.
He ordered crutches and a boot to wear at all times even while sleeping.
My question is this. For 9 days I was stepping on that foot and didn't have much pain, does this new boot and the crutches are doing me any good at this stage of the game?
I am assuming that the foot started to heel on its own immediately without all that.

Sincerely

Roula

Hi Roula,
In spite of the fact that there is no pain, the doctor has you in a boot in order to allow the fracture to properly heal. Too many times if a fracture is under treated it can end up giving the patient permanent pain.
Follow your doctor's instructions.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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Burning pain between 2nd and 3rd toes

by J Hogan
(Los Angeles,USA)

During the day,I work in construction,while my mind is busy on measurements and such,I don't really notice the pain but when the day is done,I feel pain on the ball of my foot and burning between 2nd and 3rd toes.I have a pair of Nike sandels that have a high arch support and when I wear them it ,the pain,subsides somewhat.I looked up symptons and Mortons nueroma seems to be what it is.Most of my shoes are good to high quality,but I don't get the relief of my sandels.I can't wear that type of shoe for work.What can I do to relieve the pain and or repair my foot?

Hi,
Unfortunately if your symptoms are severe and you truly have a Morton's neuroma (which it sounds like) you will need to see a podiatrist.
One thing you can try, however, would be an arch support with a metatarsal pad on it to try and take pressure off the nerve.
Go back to my section on Morton's neuroma; I describe the type of arch support that you should consider.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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my ankle is swollen about the size of a golf ball and it hurts bad

by wendy
(anniston)

A concrete block fell five feet scrapped the side of my leg ankle and foot. Landing on my ankle and top of my foot it has been 36 hours it sweells to the pooint of making my toes numb I can walk on it barely but it causes severe pain. Should I have it xrayed or wait to see if it improves on its own. I have kept it elevated and ice on it and treated the scraps with an antibacteria cream and bandage ,

Hi Wendy,
Thirty six hours with no real improvement suggests to me that it should be seen by a doctor who can then properly determine whether an xray or any other test is necessary.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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Foot pain in second toe; toe next to big toe

by Susan L
(Milwaukee, Wisconsin)

I have had pain in my second toe. The toe next to my big toe. It hurts to move it and when I walk it feels like I have a lump under that toe. The pain is constant even when I am not walking. It just hurts less when I am off it. It feels kinda like if I were to put a pencil under my toe and walk over it. Sometimes I even will get sharp pains up the top of me foot in that area. It swells up and gets red and sometimes if I am on it to much turns blue/purple. The more I am off it the color goes back. But I seem to also have a white circle on that toe, below the knuckle, that may be due to the fact that I broke that toe in the past. I will also get shooting pains from that toe up my leg once in awhile. It I try and stretch the toe by pulling my toes up late I get musle spasms or it feels like the toe is being stretched to much. I have always gotten muscle spams in that toe even as a child. But there constantly feels like I have a lump in the back of my toe, where the toe and the pad of my foot meet, kind of if you were to look under your foot it is where it kind of looks like a arch from your toe to your pad. Have any ideas? I have had a xray and it is not broken. The doctor took blood work in case of gout, but I really don't think it is the gout... It hurts more when I walk barefoot, if I wear the right shoe it hurts less, but eventually swells and then you can see after being on it for awhile the entire foot gets swollen. What are your thoughts?

Hi Susan,
I do not know how old you are or your medical history but I am concerned that the toe is turning colors.
The pain and lump on the bottom is generally from inflammation, but that alone would not explain the color changes. Color changes are suggestive of circulation issues.
I would advise you to see a podiatrist and make sure you mention the color changes when you are being examined.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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burning sensation and pain in third toe

by kris
(st. louis)

About two and a half months ago my third toe on my left foot started to burn. It is slightly swollen and red and has been that way the whole time. The redness covers the bottom of the toe,the sides and about 1/4 inch down the toe beneath the nail. Sometimes there is a shooting pain or the toe just aches, throbs or burns even when the foot is elevated. If I point the toes there is pain , or if I press the toe to the floor, there is pain. I do not have diabetes, I exercise and am fit. I am taking Advair for asthma. I take coumadin because of an artificial heart valve. I have been experiencing pain in the bottom of my foot after exercising.

Hi Kris,
Two things that come to mind in causing your toe to appear the way it does would be either chronic inflammation as in an arthritic type condition or perhaps poor circulation going into the toe.
I think the smart move would be to see a local podiatrist and have he or she examine the toe. This has been going on for 10 weeks and that is way too long to expect this problem to clear itself up.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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lump on top left side of my foot.

by Karen
(New Jersey, USA)

I hit the top of my foot off of a doggy gate a couple of weeks ago. It hurt really bad so I went to the ER to see if I had broken anything. The Dr. said it was bruise and now I have a lump in the same area that was bruised. The lump is sore to the touch but is under the skin.

Hi Karen,
The lump could be nothing more than inflammation of the soft tissue on the top of your foot, but there is also the possiblity of an inflamed vein (phlebitis) which can occur on the top of the foot secondary to trauma.
Your best bet would be to check with your doctor who can make a proper diagnosis.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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capsulities of the mtp joint and possible the start of hammertoe

Hello

i have been having this probelm for over two months now....I have terrible pain in the ball of my foot...the second dr i have been seeing put me in an aircast and told me to stay off it 6 weeks later it is worse. I started pt because i read it will help inflammation...i have gone for one week so far and i feel worse at night. How long will this take to heal. Should i be using a walker or cruthes to heal it...I am taking ibprofen.

Hi,
If you have what is known as a rigid hammertoe where the toe is rigidly bent up in the air, then there is a good chance your capsulitis may never go away because that area is constantly being stretched by the hammertoe. In these cases the hammertoe deformity would have to be corrected. If you have not already done so, an MRI would be indicated to make sure there is nothing else going on in that area causing your pain.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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Etching burning pain in left second toe at night only.

by Gerard
(Homestead, Florida.)

This has happen now the 3rd time in about 8 months. The etching burning pain wakes me up at night and only at this happens and it stays with me for a long time. I sleep with socks, I live in South Florida. I sleep with central cooling system 72 deg at night.In the pass I remove my socks and it seems to help, but still not sure. I do have a back problem, L4 & L5 S2 degenerative disc, so I have to do a lot of stretching, but when this happens there is no pain in lower leg, but there is a very little amount of numbness in big & second toe when this happens. Sometimes this would happen maybe 2-3 nights in a row, then disappears for months.

Hi Gerard,
The areas you want to explore with your doctor would be a radiculopathy or irritation where the nerves come out of the spinal column.
You would also want to see if there is any irritation of the local nerves in the area of the second toe.
Third, you want to make sure there is not a vascular component to the problem such as arterial compromise.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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swollen second toe

by Stan
(Saltburn by the sea england)

I have been diagnosed with gout and first it was in my big toe near where you would get a bunion. it then went to my second toe where the pain was unbearable. i have had several attacks but the joint on my second toe remains swollen all the time now even when gout is not present .Is this normal or is it possible that i have another problem? this has been like it for at least 12 months now.

Hi Stan,
There is always the possibility that another problem exists, but in gout if enough uric acid crystals develop in the joint, the area will remain swollen all the time.
If nothing else you need to get your uric acid under control to prevent further attacks, once that is accomplished you may have to enterain surgical intervention on the second toe if it hurts you on a regular basis.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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mild pain and swelling in my toes and forefoot after a 5th metatarsal head fracture

by Kim O
(White Lake Mi)

5 weeks ago I fractured the 5th metatarsal head on my left foot... Doc gave me a walker boot to wear to help the pain and healing... it all seemed to work fine .. at my 2 wk chech up I was told everything is healing well... that in a couple more weeks I will be fine, Good as new !
I decide to not wear the boot the pass week at work... and everyday since then my foot hurts to bend my toes.. they ache their stiff and slightly swellon at the end of the day... I have a small poping in my baby toe when I bend it along with a tiny bit of pain.. also now the top of my foot hurts Slightly when I bend my toes and walk... not to mention my big toe from the stress I place on it when I walk trying to adjust my step so my foot doesnt hurt as much...
How I injuryed my foot was completely dumb...I was walking thru a door way and cut the opening short and kicked the door jam with atleast the last 3 toes on my left foot... apparently the baby toe took the worse of the force... but now I'm feeling it in more than that .... Help .. I will be heading back to see my Ortho.. for my next check up of 5 weeks.. feeling like a boob .. since there are others worse off than myself... but was still wondering what your thoughts of this all might be and what to do to help the healing ....
Starting to get a bit frustrated and Annoyed not being able to walk correctly or even go back to the gym.......Signed Hop-a-long Kim

Hi Kim,
First of all, put the boot back on. Regardless of how well the foot may have felt, you should have never taken the boot off. The purpose of the boot is to allow the injured area to heal.
Secondly, give the doctor's office a call and tell them the same thing you told me, see if they want you to come in for an xray to see if you did any further damage.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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possible broken toe swellling after 3 weeks

by Sam
(Springfield, MO)

It's been about 3 weeks since I jammed my bare toes on steel exercise equipment.
I think that the little toe was broken, but was told by a nurse at my dr's office that there's really nothing they can do for a broken toe, so I've waited for it to heal without medical treatment. I've used ice, as needed, and kept most of my weight off of it while walking. It's stayed pretty sore, but seemed to be improving ---- until this evening. It became more painful after my evening 'dog walk' and I discovered that it's quite swollen again and fairly red. Any idea why it would get worse, with no real changes in activity on my part? I am a healthy fifty year old female. Thanks in advance for any info.

Hi Sam,
A common misconception among many people is that there is no treatment for a broken toe. Nothing could be further from the truth. A broken bone is a broken bone regardless of where it occurs and needs to be treated.
The problem with undertreating/not treating a broken bone is you run the risk of developing a nonunion where the bone never heals and then ends up being a constant source of pain.
I would suggest you consult with a podiatrist in your area, have an xray, see what type of fracture has occurred and then have appropriate treatment.
The fact that three weeks has passed does not help matters but nonetheless the toe needs treatment.
Marc Mitnick DPM

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(location unknown)
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Wonderful advice

by: Anonymous

This is the best site for foot problem info.


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by: Max

location unknown
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Bonnie

location unknown
Again, Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to answer my question....your an angel!

Nancie

Wisconsin
Thank you for your response. You have provided some great insight (to my question)....

Julie

location unknown
Thank-you so very much for responding so quickly and in such detail to my question!! I will give my surgeon a call today!! This website is terrific!!!! Thank-you again!

Renae

North Carolina
Many Thanks Dr Marc!
Thank you for your response. It sounds like a good plan to me. He did not cut the wart out first ...

KG

location unknown


Thanks again doc for having this website and we STILL need qualified Podiatrists in beautiful sunny Tampa Bay (Bradenton) Florida.

Bessie Mae

Florida
Dear Dr. Mitnick, Thank you so very much for taking your time to answer my question. You have greatly relieved my anxiety related to the continual tingly I feel in my feet. I will share your response with my podiatrist next week. God bless you for having this question and answer page on your website! Most gratefully,

Lynne T.

location unknown
Your webpage is excellent, I commend you on sharing your knowledge to the public.

Robert

New Jersey


Thank you. you were more detailed than what others have told me they finally called from the last xrays and my son is now in a cast for 2 weeks he did have a fracture that was not noticeable.

a mom

location unknown


I have read your website and I have to admit that I am amazed at all the information that is on here. I have learned more than the three years I have been going to several doctors that I have seen!!

Melody

Lenoir, NC


Thank you so much Doc for a quick and thorough response!

Rustam

Bellevue, WA


I cannot thank you enough for your response, opinion, and suggestions! I want you to know how much it means to me, and I'm sure everyone else who has ever asked you a question! I feel like you're a lifesaver and have empowered me to take a stronger role and stand up for myself and my feet!

Jodi

location unknown