Conditions InDepth: Foot Pain
Main Page | ]]>Types of Foot Pain]]> | ]]>Risk Factors]]> | ]]>Symptoms]]> | ]]>Diagnosis]]> | ]]>Treatment]]> | ]]>Screening]]> | ]]>Reducing Your Risk]]> | ]]>Talking to Your Doctor]]> | ]]>Living With Foot Pain]]> | ]]>Resource Guide]]>
The foot is a complex structure of 26 bones, 33 joints, and 126 muscles, ligaments, and nerves. Only a small percentage of Americans are born with foot problems. Most problems are due to neglect and improper care, including ill-fitting shoes. With age, changes occur in the feet. Some disorders begin early in life and are affected by heredity, gait patterns, and terrain. About 75% of Americans will experience foot pain at some point in their lives.
Normal Anatomy of the Left Foot
Common causes of foot pain include:
- Poor-fitting shoes
- High-heeled shoes
- Poor posture
- High impact exercise (eg, running)
- Poor balance
Foot pain may also be caused by systemic disease. For example:
- Arthritis ( ]]>osteoarthritis]]> and ]]>rheumatoid arthritis]]> )—Arthritis can cause stiffness and reduced range of motion.
- Peripheral Vascular Disease —This condition affects the legs and feet by causing reduced circulation, swelling, and increased risk of infection.
- ]]>Diabetes]]> —A common complication of diabetes is reduced circulation, which causes a number of problems in the legs and feet including abnormal sensation, swelling, and increased risk of infection.
- ]]>Gout]]> —Gout may cause pain and swelling in the great toe.
For descriptions of many common types of foot pain, ]]>click here.]]>
]]>What are the risk factors for foot pain?]]>
]]>What are the symptoms of foot pain?]]>
]]>How is foot pain diagnosed?]]>
]]>What are the treatments for foot pain?]]>
]]>Are there screening tests for foot pain?]]>
]]>How can I reduce my risk of foot pain?]]>
]]>What questions should I ask my doctor?]]>
]]>What is it like to live with a bunion?]]>
]]>Where can I get more information about foot pain?]]>
American Diabetes Association website. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/home.jsp .
American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society website. Available at: http://www.aofas.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=1 .
American Podiatric Medical Association website. Available at: http://www.apma.org/s_apma/index.asp .
National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases website. Available at: http://www.niddk.nih.gov/ .
Last reviewed April 2009 by ]]>Robert Leach, MD]]>
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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