Show Summary Details
Page of



Bryan English

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 12 June 2021

The true definition of metatarsalgia is ‘pain in the forefoot in the region of the heads of the metatarsals’. The term is subject to abuse, and patients may present with a diagnosis of metatarsalgia with any forefoot pain. This condition is often caused by trauma, but inflammation and a capsulitis at this site can be due to an underlying inflammatory arthropathy. A non-traumatic onset of problems at this site should alert the diagnostician to consider rheumatological investigations. Traumatic capsulitis of the joints is due to excessive forces being applied to this area. Sportspeople may develop this condition if their footwear lacks adequate shock absorbency. A sudden increase in mileage, a change of footwear, an alteration of terrain, and a recent increase in body weight are all possible contributory factors to sports-related overuse trauma. In the sedentary population, excessive body weight and unsuitable footwear are the main causative factors.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.