Dropped Metatarsal Treatment in New York, NY

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Do you have pain in the ball of your foot — the part of the sole just behind your toes? Does it get worse when you stand, walk, or run and improves when you rest?

It may be a condition called metatarsalgia brought on by complications with one or more of the five bones in your foot ‘dropping’. Your foot has five metatarsals that each connect to one of your toes. If one of these metatarsals sits lower than the others (“dropped metatarsal”), it will bear a greater amount of your body’s weight than it should, causing pain and inflammation.

High heels are often a culprit in the development of a dropped metatarsal. Luckily, multiple procedures are available to correct this problem.


  • Pain in the ball of your foot — the part of the sole just behind your toes.
  • The pain may be sharp, aching or burning pain.
  • Pain that gets worse when you stand, walk or run and improves when you rest.
  • The pain may radiate from the balls of the feet into the toes.
  • Numbness or tingling in your toes.
  • Pain that worsens when you flex your feet.
  • A feeling in your feet as if you’re walking with a pebble in your shoe.
  • Increased pain when you’re walking barefoot, especially on a hard surface.
  • Calluses on the ball of your foot.

Metatarsalgia FAQ

What causes metatarsalgia?

Metatarsalgia can be caused by a single causative factor or a group of factors. Often these include:

  • The shape of the foot (high arches or a second toe that is longer than the big toe)
  • Intense training, high-impact sports, or physical activity (especially long-distance running)
  • Wearing shoes that are too small or high heels
  • Foot deformities (hammertoe, bunions)
  • Excess body weight or obesity
  • Stress fractures
  • Inflammatory arthritis

How is metatarsalgia treated?

While in most cases, metatarsalgia can be treated without surgery with rest, wearing metatarsal pads and arch supports, some will need more extensive care. This can include physical therapy, custom orthotics, or surgery to realign the metatarsal bones.

What can I do to avoid and treat metatarsalgia?

  • Know the symptoms so you can address them before it becomes a problem
  • Rest your feet
  • Apply ice packs to the affected foot
  • Use an over-the-counter pain reliever (talk to your doctor first)
  • Wear well-fitting shoes
  • Use arch supports
  • Wear metatarsal pads
  • Maintain a healthy weight

Related Procedures

*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.