What are bone spurs?

Bone spurs are a bony growth found on a normal bone. They can really form on any part of the skeleton but the most common places include; hips, knees, spine, hands, shoulders and feet. A lot of people think that a bone spur would be sharp and uncomfortable, I think this is because of the name. However, it is normally fairly smooth but it can cause some discomfort which we will go into below.

What are the causes of a bone spur?

A bone spur in any part of the body is caused by the body trying to repair itself. The body builds extra bone around the area that is causing pain and irritation. This is true in arthritis as well. The pain that people feel with arthritis is the direct result of bone growing around the joint to protect it. In the case of bone spurs in the foot, one of the possible causes for bone spurs in the foot is the tightening of ligaments. Activities that can do this are running and dancing, things that put a lot of stress on the feet.

The direct cause of bone spurs in the foot is any rubbing, pressure or stress that has been going on for some time. So the causes can also extend to wearing ill fitting shoes for example. A lot of women who wear high heeled shoes may also get bones spurs as well as people who are overweight.

The pain

The pain from a bone spur in your foot is not actually from the bone spur itself. As we mentioned above, the bone spur is relatively smooth. What is actually happening is the bone spur is contacting your skin from the inside and rubbing on it, it can also press and rub against bone and soft tissue like nerves, ligaments and tendons. This can cause wear and tear over time and so if you have pain with your bone spur, this is most likely the reason.

Bone spur treatment

If the bone spur in your foot is causing you some pain and discomfort then your doctor is likely to recommend you use over-the-counter pain medication to relieve this. Things such as ibuprofen, naproxen sodium and acetaminophen are the most common medications recommended by GP’s for bone spur pain. If your bone spur is limiting the range of movement that you have in your foot or if it is pressing on the nerves, surgery may be required to remove it.

If you think that you do have a bone spur in your foot then make an appointment with your local GP. They will be able to examine the area and recommend the best thing to do next.

We hope that this article has given you some helpful information about bone spurs in the foot. If it has then please feel free to share it with your friends and family. For more information on other common conditions, please explore our blog further, we have plenty of other articles on an array of common foot conditions.