Common foot conditions

Biomechanical problems

Pain in the feet, legs, knees, hips, lower back and rest of the body can occur in all age categories. The influence that the foot has on the rest of the body can never be understated. inherited features as well as acquired faulty foot function play a role on aches and pains.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis is probably one of the most common Biomechanical condition seen in a Podiatrists rooms. Pain in the heel …or Heel pain syndrome, can manifest in many ways. The management of which can involve an Biomechanical assessment, Gait analysis, footwear appreciation, flexibility and strength programs, soft tissue massage and foot mobilisation, strapping.

Morton’s Neuroma

Numbness in the forefoot and toes. This happens when there is an inflamed nerve in the forefoot between the metatarsal heads, more commonly between the 2nd-3rd, and 3rd-4th Metatarsal heads. When the foot is squeezed across the forefoot it may elicit pain, or when the inter-metatarsal spaces are palpated, sharp pain can be found.

Hallux Valgus (Bunions)

Bunions are a condition of the foot that affects women more than men. It manifests as pain in the 1st Metatarsal Phalangeal joint (the big toe joint), redness and swelling. The sufferer experiences pain on walking and wearing closed shoes. There is often enlargement of the 1st Metatarsal joint as a consequence of osteoarthritic changes.

Dorsal Exostosis

This condition is similar to Bunions although there is no deviation of the big toe. The bony enlargement occurs on the dorsum or top of the 1st Metatarsal Phalangeal Joint.

Dorsal Foot Pain

This commonly occurs at the 1st Metatarsal Cuneiform joint, although it can occur at other joints on top of the foot as well. It manifests as acute or chronic pain on the top of the foot which can occur in the mornings and as the day wears on depending on how long one is on their feet. It results in an osteoarthritic change in the joint leading to as small bump.

Mid-Arch Pain

Pain in the arch can be related to foot strain, or excess pronation. I may involve the Peroneus Longus tendon that inserts at the base of the 1st metatarsal in the mid arch. This tendon is responsible for maintaining the arch. Should excess pronation occur, then tendon stress can occur.


Pain on the bottom of the ball of the foot in either the Fibular or Tibular sesamoid bones. Common in high arched individuals, women who wear heels, dancers and runners. Tight calves play a role as well.

Posterior Tibial Tendonitis

This tendon starts as a muscle deep behind the leg and moves around the medial malleolus (ankle), attaching as a tendon to the Navicular, Medial Cuneiform and 1st Ray. The pain is commonly referred to a shin splints on the lower leg. It can manifest in many ways and is caused by excess pronation.

Talar Impingement (ankle joint pain)

A painful condition of the ankle that manifests as stiffness and pain across the ankle joint particularly in the mornings, after rest and as the day progresses.

Haglunds Deformity

An enlargement of the posterior aspect of the Calcaneus leading to a bump on the back of the heel. It occurs more commonly in women.

Achilles Tendonitis

This condition occurs more often in sportsmen although it can afflict children as well as the elderly. It is an inflammatory condition of the Achilles Paratendon, which is a sheath that extends over the tendon.

Chronic Ankle Instability

This foot has the tendency to invert without notice and repetitively sprain the lateral ligaments. It is often referred to as “Weak Ankles”. Once a sprain has occurred, the ligaments may need to be rehabilitated to improved function, or the ankle may be prone to further repetitive ankle instability. Bandy legs and certain biomechanical anomalies can predisposed to this.