Ashok (name changed), a 53 year-old patient, consulted Dr. Abhijeet Kale, assistant professor, Orthopaedic department at LTGM Sion Hopsital, because of unbearable foot pain.
Dr. Kale explained, “I regularly see patients complaining of foot pain from the age group of 15 to 70 years. The patient visited me in the last week. He was an occasional drinker. And he had swelling over the metatarsophalangeal joints (MTP joints), which means the swelling was at the base of the first toe. The x-ray report was normal but blood investigation revealed that his uric acid level was high”.
Dr. Kale added, “The patient was put on drugs to decrease his uric acid level and was advised life style modifications like to avoid drinking, to lower the protein content in the food. His swelling has gone, but he is still seeking treatment. Taking calcium and vitamin D supplements can cure 99 per cent of foot problems”.
Feet, carry us from here to there every day. But you may not think much about them until they hurt said doctors. “The most common cause of foot pain is injury. Other reasons include ulcers, gout, or woman wearing high heels, improper foot wear, doing a lot of strenuous activities, wrong posture, spur, arthritis and flat foot,” said Dr. Pratit Samdani, physician at Jaslok Hospital
Dr. Kale informed that the other causes of foot pain are plantar fasciitis (which is one of the most common causes of heel pain), bursitis and osteoporosis.
Doctors also warn that calcium and vitamin D deficiency can result in foot pain. “It is commonly seen in older people, perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. Vitamin B 12 deficiency can also cause cramps and foot pain,” explained Dr. Vikrant Shah, general physician, Chembur’s Zen Hospital.
Diabetic patients should be equally careful said doctors. “Diabetic’s need to take care of their foot because of their nerve functioning reduces in peripheral nerves, which leads to a delayed healing process”, said Ankita Ghag, clinical nutritionist, Co-founder and director, Vacchan Aarogya.
Doctors advised that to get the right treatment, know where exactly the problem is and locate the pain. “Maintain a proper foot posture, use right footwear and insoles. Placing your feet in warm water and salt and foot massages will also provide relief” informed Dr. Shah.
What’s causing your foot pain? (Source Cleveland clinic)
Repetitive overuse: Is a leading cause of heel pain. People at risk are those who walk heavily on their feet, run long distances, or carry extra weight.
Impact injuries: Cause deep bruises on either the fat pad or the ball of the foot that make it feel like you’re walking on a pebble. Heel bone fractures – either from a fall from a significant height or new, rigorous or repetitive overuse – can also cause pain.
Running, jumping or other strenuous activities: Can cause discomfort and inflammation in the ball of the foot.
Wearing high heels: Morton’s neuroma, most commonly found in women who wear high heels, is a thickening of tissue around the nerve between the bases of the toes. It leads to foot pain, and sensations of pain numbness in the ball of the foot.
Arch pain: Arch pain, most often from plantar fasciitis, affects the heel and arch of the foot. Pain is usually more noticeable first thing in the morning or when one starts to walk after sitting for long periods of time, which is also called “start-up pain.”
Other assorted causes: Inflammation and swelling from arthritis can often cause pain. Arthritis typically affects the middle part of the foot and big toe joint. However, bunions, hammer toe, claw toe, turf toe and ingrown toenails can also cause discomfort.