Pain in the foot can involve any part of the foot. Abnormalities of the skin, nerves, bones, blood vessels, and soft tissues of the foot can result in foot pain. Evaluating the cause of foot pain can require an understanding of the anatomy and physiology of not only the foot, but also the ankle, lower extremity, and lower spine.
Because we expose our feet to potential injury in our daily lives by walking, we have all experienced pains in the feet at one time or another. There are many common causes of foot pains, such as blisters and corns. There are also less common causes of foot pain, such as sciatica and osteomyelitis. Foot pain may cause unsteady gait and/or limping. Treatments for foot pain depend on the particular cause.
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Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.
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Causes of Foot Pain
Ankle pain is commonly due to a sprain or tendinitis. The severity of ankle sprains ranges from mild (which can resolve within...
Arthritis is inflammation of one or more joints. When joints are inflamed they can develop stiffness, warmth, swelling, redness...
Athlete's foot (tinea pedis) is a skin infection caused by the ringworm fungus. Symptoms include itching, burning, cracking,...
Bone spurs are pointy outgrowths of bone that develop in areas of inflammation or injury. They commonly occur on the heel and...
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Corns and calluses are sometimes painful areas of thickened skin that appear between the toes and fingers or on the soles of the...
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Heel spurs -- pointed, bony outgrowths of the heel -- are caused by localized soft-tissue inflammation and can be located at the...
Ingrown Toenail (Onychocryptosis)
Ingrown toenails are caused by the growth of the toenail into the surrounding nail fold. Symptoms and signs include toe pain,...
A Morton's neuroma is an inflamed nerve between the bones at the ball of the foot. Symptoms include a burning, sharp pain on the...
Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis caused by inflammation, breakdown, and eventual loss of cartilage in the joints. Also...
Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone. Potential causes include injections around the bone, fractures that puncture the skin,...
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Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of the ligament underneath the sole of the foot. Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include heel...
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Examples of Medications for Foot Pain
- acetaminophen (Tylenol, Tylenol Arthritis Pain, Tylenol Ext, Little Fevers Children's Fever/Pain)
- aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid, Bayer, Ecotrin, and others)
- celecoxib (Celebrex)
- efinaconazole, Jublia
- etodolac, Lodine (Discontinued)
- ibuprofen (Advil, Children's Advil/Motrin, Medipren, Motrin, Nuprin, PediaCare Fever, and others)
- naproxen (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn)
- OTC Pain Relievers and Fever Reducers
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