Midfoot Ailments & Treatments

mid foot pain


Fallen and collapsed arches are the root of many foot problems.  According to Northcoast Footcare, Inc. tight calves and overpronation cause a majority of foot problems. When the calf muscles (or Achilles tendon) are too tight, it pulls up the heel bone earlier than in a normal gait. As it does, the talus (ankle bone) tilts downward and rotates inward, forcing the mid-foot to collapse. Otherwise, known as overpronation. *10

The mid-foot consists of five irregularly shaped tarsal bones that are connected to the forefoot and hind foot by muscles and the plantar fascia (arch ligament.) Your mid-foot helps transfer weight from your heel to toes through the motion of walking and running.

Although fallen arches can be hereditary, obesity, diabetes, arthritis and inappropriate shoes frequently contribute to the condition. Jonathan Cluett, M.D., About.com Guide, recommends arch supports, either “off the shelf” orthotics insoles or custom orthotics. A brace with an adjustable dual strapping support system that provides an inward and upward support to the metatarsal arch is a new way to provide support to a collapsed arch. Also, avoid wearing high heels because wearing high heels over time causes the Achilles tendon to tighten.

Those who have flat feet (pes planus) or collapsed arches may suffer from a syndrome known as Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD). The symptom is pain from behind the ankle bone to the arch of the foot. Flat-footed women ages 40 – 60 years of age and overweight are most common among those who are affected by PTTD. Seek advice from a podiatrist or orthopedist where they will most likely recommend rigid shoes or custom insoles. *11

Foot Arthritis

Arthritis in the feet is most common among those who have flat feet because the mechanics of the foot have shifted in a way that places excessive stress on the joints. Over time, cartilage that protects your joints start to break down, creating friction in the joints. Symptoms include frequent aching and pain, bones spurs on top of the foot, and general bone stress. Using a strong adjustable arch support controls the flattening of the foot, reducing stress on arthritic joints. *13

Plantar fibroma

Plantar fibroma is a soft fibrous benign tumor that grows very slowly on the arch of the foot. Sometimes, it disappears without treatment or it can be treated with custom-molded orthotics that decreases pressure on the tumor site.

Exterior tendonitis

Exterior tendonitis is an inflammation of tendons on top of the mid-foot usually caused by tight shoes or tightly laced shoes. Most common treatment is icing the site, taking an anti-inflammatory medication, and gently exercising the foot with stretching exercises. *14

You place about 2-3 times your body
weight in pressure on your feet when
walking. When running, this pressure
can increase to nearly 7 times your
body weight! *12

The human foot has been called the
"mirror of health."  There are more than 300 different foot ailments. Some can be traced to heredity, but for an aging population, most of these ailments stem from the cumulative effect of years of neglect or abuse.  Many foot problems can be treated successfully, and the pain of foot ailments relieved by visiting a Podiatrist, a doctor of podiatric medicine (DPM).
Source: APMA.org