Metatarsalgia is the wrong term for a very frequent problem in athletes. This is a phrase which regrettably will get applied a lot but is quite a pointless word and diagnosis. The word is similar to, as an example, declaring you've got a painful knee. This painful knee might be on account of any one of numerous different things. Metatarsalgia implies symptoms within the metatarsals or forefoot, therefore it may be due to many distinct problems. This is exactly why the phrase is really so useless.
The cause of the pain may be a callus of the skin underneath the forefoot; it may be a pinched nerve that produces radiating type pains; it could be a fat pad atrophy that produces problems with weight bearing; or perhaps it may be arthritis type symptoms within the joints within the ball of the foot. Every one of these possible causitive factors of metatarsalgia are usually rather different to each other with diverse signs and symptoms and different reasons that simply functions to show just what a useless phrase it is to work with.
By far the most frequent source of discomfort in the forefoot is a problem known as a plantar plate tear. This is a strain of the soft tissue underneath the joints in the forefoot that might progress to a little tear. The pain sensation is often over the joint on the bottom of the foot and just distal to the joint. Ordinarily it's the 2nd metatarsophalangeal joint, but it may affect all of the metatarsophalangeal joints. It's more prevalent in those who exercise more. A plantar plate tear begins as a mild discomfort that is quite often dismissed, however it will get worse unless there is a treatment solution started as it doesn't get better on its own.
Typically the therapy for a plantar plate tear is to use strapping to hold the joint in a plantarflexed or downward position to stop it from dorsiflexing up therefore the strain has a rest. A rocker sole footwear or a footwear that is less flexible could also help do that. If this improves, it can tend to take a long time and patience is needed. When it is not going to help, then a number of plantar plate tears need a surgical procedure.