metatarsalgia pain & Morton's toe: UPDATE!

Discussion in 'Ask the Docs' started by Mamyohmamy, Jan 4, 2012.

  1. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    See my last post for update:



    Hello Docs and fellow BFRs!

    I need some help with pain! I have been barefoot running for a little over 2 years, with a season max of 20 miles per week or so. In October 2011, I developed a strain/sprain of my right foot and couldn't run for almost 2 months. I started back to running in early December, but developed pain in the second metatarsal head of myleft foot, so I stopped running. I generally wear minimally soled shoes (such as Stems sneakers or moccasins) and the pain has continued to increase, despite no running and taking Advil.

    Last week I fashioned a metatarsal pad for myself with some foam and have it taped behind the 2nd and 3rd metatarsal heads on the sole of my foot. This helps somewhat with the discomfort, but not much. I do have Morton's toe, and the second metatarsal head is about 1/4" longer than the first, on both feet. I have callusing under the second metatarsal head, that I have been trying to manage with pumice stones, but the area is definitely "thicker" than under the first met.



    Any other suggestions for treatment and prevention?
  2. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    Anyone?

    Anyone?
  3. Barefoot TJ Administrator
    1. Nomad
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    Hi Mamy, I heard from Dr.

    Hi Mamy, I heard from Dr. Mark tonight, and he said he will be responding to the questions in this forum shortly.

    In the meantime, you might want to read at least the last post in the thread called Fellowship of the Morton's Toe stickied in our Medical Conditions, Health, Nutrition & Injuries forum here: http://www.barefootrunners.org/forum-topic/fellowship-mortons-toe

    Dr. Burt Schuler wrote a book dedicated to Morton's Toe, and he has just posted tonight to this thread. He has some toe orthotics you can make that he believes will help barefoot runners who have Morton's Toe. He has a wealth of info on his site and in his book/s as well, so check out his signature for that info.

    ________________________

  4. Joe Z Barefooters

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    First of all, I am not a Dr. 

    First of all, I am not a Dr. However, the fact that the pain is getting worse despite no running sounds kinda bad. I would probably recommend going to see a Dr. about this. Could it be a stress fracture? Maybe you bruised the metatarsal head? Also, I wouldn't take Advil or anything like that unless the pain is absolutely unbearable (in which case you should definitely see a Dr.).

    As for dealing with Morton's toe/foot issues, what I am currently trying to do with mine is to get the 1st metatarsal to take the load off the smaller mets (since the 1st met is stronger and built for taking the load better). This basically involves trying to encourage my arch to work better, and get that 1st met head to make better contact with the ground (by pressing down with the 1st toe and met head). There is a decent video on how to get your arch to work better here http://youtu.be/2AwRK3js5dg. Also, check out http://uvaendurosport.wordpress.com/2011/07/09/less-from-your-shoes-more-from-your-feet/. And this as well http://youtu.be/TyRE9dReVTE. Don't know if this will be helpful to you or not, but that is what I am currently doing to deal with my Morton's Foot issues (to try to get my foot to eventually not have those issues anymore).
  5. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    Thank you all for the links-

    Thank you all for the links- I will check them out. In the meantime, I have requested a referral to one of the podiatrists from the barefoot-friendly docs map.
  6. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    Joe Z- your links didn't go

    Joe Z- your links didn't go anywhere (404 error)... Maybe because I'm browsing on my iPhone? I'll check the out later though.
  7. Dr. Mark Barefooters

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    Mamyohmamy,As always it is

    Mamyohmamy,

    As always it is really tough without seeing your foot and what you are doing, and advice is often off base so can give some general advice



    The met pads are good if you have toes in extension..it places the fat pads back under the met heads.



    The link the UVA good as you need to learn how to load the first toe. If you have a first toe deviating towrd the second Correct Toes help.



    I'll need to check out Dr. Shulers site too



    Mark

    ________________________

  8. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    THanks Dr. Mark! I actually

    THanks Dr. Mark! I actually have Correct Toes and I have been wearing them at night. I may start wearing them during the day but I find that they irritate my little toe a bit- I think I have a large fat pad on that toe.
  9. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    Just made an appointment with

    Just made an appointment with a "barefoot-friendly" doc from the list :)
  10. Joe Z Barefooters

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    Ok, sorry about that,

    Ok, sorry about that, hopefully the links will copy and paste correctly this time...



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2AwRK3js5dg

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TyRE9dReVTE

    http://uvaendurosport.wordpress.com/2011/07/09/less-from-your-shoes-more-from-your-feet/
  11. Joe Z Barefooters

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    When I was wearing the

    When I was wearing the Correct Toes, which I've basically stopped doing since they didn't seem to be helping, I found them more comfortable to wear with toe socks.
  12. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    So I went to see Dr. Neil

    So I went to see Dr. Neil Feldman last Friday- I got some sort-of bad news. Essentially, I have an elevated first metatarsal, and I am severely over-pronating, my functional ankles are stiff and I have bad posture :-( He also talked about how my hips aren't level and that the pain in my metatarsal region is a systemic issue (my chiropractor has worked on my hips a few times.)

    He is a barefoot-friendly doc (I was delighted to see that he was wearing Vivobarefoot shoes and his assistant was wearing Stems) but he kindly informed me that I probably won't be ready to barefoot run again "for a few years."

    I was a little stunned and saddened.

    After 2 years of barefoot running and years of minimal shoes, I am very sad and disappointed in myself and my body. Dr. Feldman prescribed some orthotics to correct my heel and help get my foot, toes etc. straightened out, and I have a referral for a barefoot running physical therapist to help me on the road to recovery.

    Considering that I haven't really run for almost 4 months now, running even with orthotics sounds good to me. But I am wondering... what the hell happened?! Everything was good, and now this?

    I told the doc straight out that I won't wear thick soled running shoes, and he was OK with that- my Stems are good, and he OK'd my intent to try the Altra Intuitions.

    This still sucks. And orthotics aren't cheap. I'm shelling out the $500.... we'll see if it helps.

    As a question to the docs/anyone- is an elevated first metatarsal the same thing as functional hallux limitus?
  13. Lomad Barefooters

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    Ugh. Sorry to hear that.

    Ugh. Sorry to hear that. Excepting the barefoot firendly doc part, I got similar diagnosis last week (elevated 1st met, metatarsalgia, etc.). I empathize with you and have been struggling with the notion of not barefoot running and lookng into what options are available as well.

    I hope your road to recovery is smooth and progressively less frustrating!
  14. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    Right back at you, Lomad!

    Right back at you, Lomad! It's hard not to get frustrated, especially after my signficant other proundly announced "See? I knew running barefoot couldn't be good for you!" Thanks for your support though- Its good to know I'm not alone in getting that diagnosis.

    Were orthotics prescribed for you?
  15. Lomad Barefooters

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    Yes, but he said over the

    Yes, but he said over the counter orthotics, like Sole footbeds + a metatarsal pad would work. I'm finding that anything that elevates my heel is making it feel worse due to pressure so i've been wearing my mocassin slippers most of the time. Fortunately my wife did not give me the "See? I told you so" as she knows it would just push me to prove my point. She's been supportive through my barefoot journey so I think she's as bummed out for me as I am.

    I've also been doing exercises to better engage the first metatarsal (see my "foot pain" thread for a description) and I swear it's already helping after just a few days. That could just be psychological/wishful thinking, though:).

    If I can scrape the funds I want to see the bf friendly podiatrist local to me (from the map) for additional input, but my HMO coverage will not pay any of it; so that may not happen (I think he'll likely confirm what I'v been told, but I'm hoping for better odds on barefoot possibilities...)
  16. Joe Z Barefooters

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    Yeah, an elevated 1st

    Yeah, an elevated 1st metatarsal is kind of the definition of Morton's Foot. So, I'm not surprised that you have this. My previous post was based on this guess (because that is what I also have). The main thing I am doing while running is to actively press down with the 1st toe (and 1st Met head). It probably will take some time for your foot to start working better, but I think (and hope) that the foot can be brought back from this condition to a more functional, healthy condition. I believe the links I provided before will help to address this issue as well (because those are some of the things I am doing for my own elevated 1st met.) Good luck!
  17. Joe Z Barefooters

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  18. jimwb Barefooters

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    Sorry to hear that you can't

    Sorry to hear that you can't run barefoot for a long time. That must be really tough. I'm confused a little from your post. You said that the doctor told you that you would not be ready to try again for 2years. What is going to change in the next 2 years so that you can try again and what is going to make that happen?

    Jim

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  19. Mamyohmamy Barefooters

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    jimwb wrote:Sorry to hear

    Yeah, I'm not 100% clear on that myself- he said "a couple" and didn't specify 2... I think he's hoping that the orthotics and physical therapy will help strengthen my feet/foot to the point where i can try bf running again. He's not saying that the orthotics alone will help.



    Thanks for all the exercise links- I'm going to give those a shot!
  20. Barefoot TJ Administrator
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    Oh Mamy, Oh Mamy.  I am so

    Oh Mamy, Oh Mamy. I am so sorry.

    From my understanding, orthotics do not help strengthen your feet or toes. They do the opposite. Perhaps he is wanting you to use them as a way to provide support while you heal.

    Did you read any about the toe orthotic you could make? It can be worn while running barefoot too. BUT if you are more comfortable running in shoes, then of course, do that. Check out the Fellowship of the Morton's Toe thread stickied to the top of this forum, then go to the last couple of posts. There, Dr. Burt, posted some info that might be of help to you.

    Get well soon!

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