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Posts for tag: bursitis

Last year we talked a little about heel pain and that brought up the topic of bursitis. Here’s a quick recap of that article:

  • Bursae are fluid filled sacs around the body that help muscles and tendons move smoothly over one another
  • When these bursae become inflamed it is called Bursitis and results in heel or foot pain
  • Bursitis is caused mainly through repeated misuse of the same area of the body but other factors such as inflammatory diseases might also be a factor
  • If the pain persists for more than a week or goes away and then comes back, you need to see your podiatrist

READ MORE: Heel Pain

While bursitis is a common cause of heel pain, it can cause pain in other places as well. The metatarsal bursa is located on the pad of your foot just under your toes and takes a lot of the weight of your everyday movements. If more strain is put on one toe than another, this can inflame the metatarsal bursa and cause pain. Pain from the metatarsal bursa will be noticeably worse if you are standing with bare feet on a hard floor.

The intermetatarsal bursa is located between the toes and can cause shooting pain through the top of the foot starting at the toes. Bursitis here can be caused by wearing improperly fitting shoes that squeeze your toes together or it can occur naturally as we age. As we grow older, the arches of our feet begin to weaken and fall putting more pressure on our toes. As this happens, bursitis can develop. Wearing shoes with wide toe boxes and good arch support can help avoid and relieve this pain.

The metatarsophalangeal bursa is located on the inner side of your foot next to your big toe. This is a common place for bursitis since friction from shoes is common on this part of the foot. Preexisting bunions in the same area can exacerbate inflammation of the metatarsophalangeal bursa. If the pain persists, you could end up having a very hard time finding comfortable shoes.

Bursitis of any kind can be recognized by pain, swelling, and redness. If you have these symptoms in any part of your foot (not just your heel) come and see us at the FAAWC. When left untreated, bursitis can become chronic and lead to other foot health issues down the road. Luckily, there are lots of treatment options and they are fairly simple. Your podiatrist will make a customized treatment plan for you and get you back on your feet in no time with no inflammation and no pain. What could be better than that?!

Ladies, many of us love to wear heels, and why not? Heels can be empowering and make us feel sexy and Amazonian (especially if you’re on the shorter side). But do we really know what those heels are doing to our feet? Among the myriad of problems associated with high heels, let’s look at Haglund’s Deformity also known as “Pump Bump”.

In some ways this is a misnomer, since Haglund’s Deformity can occur in both men and women and from many types of shoes. The “bump” is true though. Haglund’s Deformity is an enlarged bump on the bone of the heel. When this bump rubs against a hard surface (like the back of a stiff high heel or a structured men’s dress shoe) it irritates the bursa next to your Achilles tendon. An inflamed bursa causes bursitis, which is a painful condition brought on by repeated stress to a single area.

READ MORE: Bursitis

People who have high arches, tight Achilles tendons, or a tendency to walk on the outside of their heel are more predisposed to have Haglund’s Deformity. If you develop this deformity, you will know by the pain, swelling, and redness surrounding a noticeable bump on the back of your heel.

Haglund’s Deformity can be diagnosed with a simple doctor visit and x-ray. Most cases of Haglund’s Deformity are treatable with anti-inflammatory medications, heel pads, heel lifts, ice, stretching exercises, orthotics, or physical therapy. If these methods don’t provide relief, surgical options may be considered.

The best way to protect your feet from Haglund’s Deformity is to avoid wearing shoes with stiff backs that press on your heel. I’m not saying that you can never wear your favorite pumps again, but it may be a good idea to cut down on the amount of time you wear them. Consider wearing flats to and from the office or party or switching it up with a cute backless heel that will avoid putting pressure on the same area. Heels are cute; “Pump Bump” is not. Protect your feet with proper shoes and treatment from the FAAWC.

READ MORE: High Heels and Neuromas

September is heel pain month. There are many causes of heel pain including stress fractures, tendonitis, bursitis, nerve entrapment, and tendon tear. Let’s take a quick look at a couple of these.

Bursitis:

There are small sacs of fluid throughout the body called bursae. These sacs exist where muscles and tendons slide across bone. A properly functioning bursae will help your body function smoothly, but occasionally these bursae can become inflamed which makes movement painful. The constant use of muscles that rub over the inflamed bursae can cause even more inflammation and make the problem worse.

Can you guess what the main symptom of bursitis is? Pain! This could be minor pain that causes small aches after repetitive use or it could be sudden sharp pain. Pain is usually worse when you press on the affected area and you may see redness and swelling.

There are many things that can lead to bursitis. Some of the most common include repeated minor impact of the same area or a sudden trauma to the area. There are secondary factors that can contribute, such as inflammatory diseases, gout, and even simple things like not stretching before exercising.

When this pain persists for a week or more, stops and then comes back, or is interfering with your daily activities, you need to make an appointment to see your podiatrist. Your podiatrist may take x-rays to rule out other causes of heel pain or order blood work to pinpoint the spot of inflammation.

Don’t be shy about heel pain. There are plenty of causes, but pain is never normal and is not likely to go away one it’s own. Stay tuned for info on the other causes of heel pain.