Dorsal foot pain, or top of the foot pain, can be caused by many different things. Being clear about the exact location and type of pain that you are feeling is crucial in helping a doctor diagnose the problem quickly and helps you to get the treatment that you need. We are going to look at some of the different injuries and conditions that can give you dorsal foot pain in this article and give you a breakdown of the pain that you might feel.
A stress fracture of the metatarsal bone. A sudden onset of pain on the top of your foot, just behind the toes, without any notable injury, might be a fracture in the metatarsal. The metatarsals are basically the knuckles of your feet, the ball of your foot being the biggest. Signs to look out for with this one is it being painful to the touch and there is often swelling in the area. You might be able to move your toes and still have a stress fracture in your metatarsal so it is worth getting checked, even if you think there isn’t something wrong.
Extensor Tendonitis. This condition is going to affect the middle of the top of your foot, normally towards the outside of the foot. They are a fancy couple of words that simply mean that your calf muscle is tight and this places stress on the tendons on the dorsal of your foot. These are the tendons that pull your foot upwards, towards the calf muscle, so you should feel the pain increase when you move your foot upwards. Wearing a one-inch heeled shoe can help take the stresses off your calf muscle or a good stretching of the calf muscle can help but always seek medical advice before doing so, it can save you from further injury.
Degenerative arthritis. If you have a more generalised pain on the top of your foot, arthritis could be the answer. Your feet may be swollen or you may see an increase in the thickness of your feet, both are an indication of degenerative arthritis. This is mostly seen in people that have flat feet or a collapsing arch. Once again, seek medical advice from your GP or a specialist as soon as you can.
Tarsal Coalition. This typically affects young adults and children and is, once again, a generalised pain on the dorsal of your foot. The pain is likely to be on the outside of your foot once again as well and it can get worse during activities. Tarsal Coalition is the abnormal fusion of two or more bones in your foot, this can be heredity and you will need an x-ray, CT scan or MRI scan to confirm it. If you suspect that you have this, make an appointment with your GP or a specialist as soon as possible, catching it early is very important for the treatment.
These are just a few of the conditions that can affect the dorsal area of your feet. We hope that you have found this article helpful. Please take a look at the other articles on our website to find out more about other common foot injuries and conditions.