Metatarsal Tendonitis...

I've just been diaganosed with metatarsal tendonitis. I'd had pain in my left foot which began after a lovely 6 mile run near the end of November 2012 and progressively worsened. I saw my Osteopath in December who told me it may be metatarsal inflammation and to rest with NO running until after Christmas. I did as I was told and iced and elevated my foot when I thought about it but maybe not as often as I should. Anyway, it never left me but did seem to become more bearable.

Basically, 8 weeks on and three weeks into my marathon training (Brighton in April - my first one), I couldn't bear it anymore. During Monday's short 3 mile run I felt pain with every step where as normally, the pain would ease once into the run and come back after stopping. It had also caused a different pain on the outer side of my foot which actually now hurts more than the injury itself - my Doctor said this is most likely because I've been curling my toes without realising, to protect the 'eye' of the injury!

Anyway, after having an x-ray which ruled out a stress fracture, advice is active rest for two weeks by halving my weekly mileage, icing at every available opportunity with flexible ice packs - including when I go to bed by putting a long sock over the top to keep packs on the top and bottom of my foot if I can bear it, taking an anti-inflammatory daily for 4 weeks and with this, I'm told it should be gone within two weeks. Deep tissue massage with thumb tips was also advised and have so far been doing everything (since Friday), plus professional sports physio if possible.

I thought I'd post this just to see if anyone has any experience of this injury and if by following any of the advice I've been given, whether or not it worked for you? I trust my Doctor as he's a sportsperson himself and understands injury, but I guess with my marathon goal getting ever closer, if this doesn't work, I'll be looking for a plan B as soon as this little lots been tried and tested!

Thanks in advance...Zoe image


  • macemace ✭✭✭

    I had a bout of Metatarsalgia a couple of years ago - i guess this is the same thing ?

    Symptoms were pain in the ball of the foot when walking, espcially down the stairs first thing in the morning. And the pain would start up after work when i walked home but would subside once i got walking ( after 5 mins or so ) and similar when i went for a run.

    My doc told me to stop running for 10 days, take Ibuprofen, and use a gel pad insole ( i got one from boots ) to be used all the time to ease the pressure.

    I did exactly as he said, was running again within 2 weeks and have had no problems since.

    Good Luck

  • This sounds really similar to my on-going problem! I was running at the end of November and had a sudden searing pain. I was literally unable to walk or weight bear for a week. It slowly improved to the point where I can walk fine now, but it is still very tender and achey at times - also quite stiff when I first wake up.

    I was x rayed 4 weeks ago, they couldn't see a stress fracture and said it was probably tendon damage but gave me very little guidance, other than to not run for 8 weeks from time of injury.

    That means I can try running now, but as it is still sore sometimes I'm a bit scared too in case I damage it further. But I am desperately missing running and equally scared that I have lost my fitness image

    Any advice for me too would be greatly appreciated!
  • I had a stress fracture in my foot last year (metatarsal), I found the symptoms similar to that of Metatarsalgia - but then I developed a lot of pain on the top of the foot, which made me convinced it was a stress fracture or something else at least. 


  • Thanks for your replies guys!

    I'm pleased to say with taking the Dr's advice of two weeks active rest (halving my marathon training miles each of these weeks), using the deep tissue massage a few times a week and icing at every opportunity, I'm rid of pain! As with many injuries, it felt as though it would never go away.

    Thankfully it has and I've been able to continue my training as planned. Don't get me wrong, I am aware of it, but it's a different feeling I get now - possibly just a cautious one to tread carefully!!

    So, it's worth trying these things even if we are a little sceptical at first - I was proved wrong and I'm 99% fixed image

  • For the massage part of it I find a golf ball rolled under the foot a good way to massage that area. You can put as much pressure as you want or need through it and its dead cheap to buy a golf ball.

    Even cheaper if you know someone stupid enough to actually play golfimage

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