Ok so it's all over, we won't say anything about England's performance - we had a week of football mourning in our house before we could bring ourselves to watch another match in a tournament that we would no longer be in. We adopted Holland and Spain so were pleased with the Final and thought Spain thoroughly deserved to win.

[caption id="attachment_93" align="alignleft" width="88" caption="The Foot with Fracture of Second Metatarsal Bone"]Picture of Foot with Fracture of Second Metatarsal Bone[/caption]

A Closer look at the foot problem; Metatarsal Fracture

I wrote about the fact that a Metatarsal Fracture was one of the most common foot injuries that footballers suffer during the tournament in one of my previous blog entries. As this type of pain is also something that many of our customers suffer via Metatarsalgia, I thought that it might be of interest to you to learn more about it.

What are Metatarsals?

Metatarsals are five long bones in the forefoot. You have one leading up to each toe and forming the metatarso-phalangeal (MTP) joints with the phalanges (toe bones) at the base of each toe. They form the tarsal-metatarsal (TMT) joints with the tarsal bones towards the ankle.

Stress Fractures

This usually will involve the second, third or fourth metatarsal bones. Stress fractures to the metatarsals are the second most common location for a stress fracture, after the Tibia.

The most common position for a metatarsal fracture is the second metatarsal, especially in those whose second toe is longer than their big toe. It is also more common in those who overpronate with the first metatarsal in a dorsiflexed position as this places greater load on the 2nd metatarsal. Stress fractures in the other metatarsals are less common, although they do occur.

What are the Symptoms of Stress Fractrures?

  • Foot pain which comes on gradually
  • Pain is located towards the mid/front of the foot.
  • Pain is aggravated by weight bearing activities such as walking, running or dancing.
  • Pain to touch the bone at the point it is broken.
  • Swelling is often present.
  • An X-ray will often not show the fracture until two or three weeks after it has started to heal.


  • Rest from weight bearing activities as much as possible.
  • For those whose job requires them to weight bear, a walking boot may be used.
  • The rest period should normally be around 4 weeks to allow sufficient healing.
  • Recommence activities only once all pain on touch and walking have cleared.
  • Start with a very slow return to activity and a gradual build of duration and intensity.
  • If the stress fracture may have been caused by abnormal foot mechanics such as overpronation or oversupination then orthotics may be required to correct this.

Acute Metatarsal Fractures

This is a fracture to the metatarsal bones caused by some kind of violent impact. Often something is dropped on the foot or the foot might be stamped on. Alternatively, a violent twisting or turning motion at the ankle may cause a fracture in the 5th metatarsal in particular.

What are the Symptoms of Acute Metatarsal Fractures

  • Acute pain at the point of trauma.
  • Rapid swelling.
  • Inability to weight bear.
  • There may be deformity in the foot.
  • Bruising will usually develop within 24 hours


  • If the bones are not displaced then a short cast or boot will be fitted for the first three weeks.
  • After six weeks the foot should be X-rayed again to ensure it has healed.
  • More complex or displaced fractures may require surgical fixation.
  • Once the cast has been removed, a thorough rehabilitation programme should begin to regain full mobility and strength.
  • A gradual return to sport can then begin!

Wearing the right Shoes

Whether you are recovering from a Metatarsal Fracture or suffer from prolonged Metatarsalagia then it is important that you wear shoes that will help alleviate the pain symptoms that you are experiencing.

If you have been prescribed orthotics for foot problems that lead to metatarsal pain in the first place such as overpronating (your foot rolls inwards when you walk) then make sure that your footwear will accommodate them.

Take a look at our Problem Feet Guide for Metartarsalagia now and view shoes at Ownshopbiz that may be suitable for you and your Metatarsals.

Go to Ownshopbiz Metatarsalagia Problem Feet Guide Now>>