Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Morton's Foot Syndrome – What causes it and how to treat it

Every human being has certain imperfections which are inherited genetically, a few traits which are passed on from the parent to the child. Morton’s Toe is one perfect example of such inheritance. While nothing can be done to prevent passing on of this unintended gift from generation to generation, certain measures do help in easing pain to a great extent.  

What exactly is Morton’s Foot Syndrome?

Look down at any normal foot and you will find the first toe as longest and largest. Remaining toes are shorter and the size reduces proportionately so that the fifth toe becomes the smallest one. While such foot structure is widely seen, there are rare cases where the foot exhibits Morton’s Toe pattern. This is a particular type of forefoot disorder when the second toe is either of same length or a tad bit longer than the first toe. This is not because the first toe is actually shorter than the second one but it is the relative length difference between the first and second metatarsals which define this specific foot condition.
Morton’s Toe/Morton’s Foot Syndrome was first described by Dr. Dudley J. Morton, an orthopedic surgeon, researcher, physician and author. Greek Foot is another name used for the syndrome. A study says that an approximate of 10% of the world’s population have this type of particular bone configuration in their feet.

Problems associated with Morton’s foot

Lateral instability in the foot may result because of hyper mobility of the big toe and first metatarsal. Patients might feel like walking on ice skates. This doesn’t sound quite comfortable, especially if you are in a hurry to reach the destination! According to research conducted by specialists in the podiatric field, Morton’s toe is one particular phenomenon which can cause several other serious ailments. The patient may suffer from back pain, discomfort in the knee and hip portions. Arthritis is one common condition experienced by those having Greek Foot. Other health problems like bunions, hammer toes and Fibromyalgia are also considered to be direct outcomes of Morton’s Foot Syndrome.

How to get relief

Many would opine that Morton’s Toe being genetic, there is no permanent cure for this particular foot problem. While it is indeed true to certain extent, but there are certain effective measures which do work in lessening the effect. However, it is advisable not to take any drastic step like popping up painkillers on daily basis, only because the pain has become unbearable. Do consult an expert podiatrist and know his opinion.
There are some simple solutions which work just fine with Morton’s Foot Syndrome. Shift to comfortable footwear with high and wide toe boxes. Try out orthotics designed with metatarsal pads. The basic purpose of these measures is to offer relief from pain by properly distributing uneven pressure of the foot. There are many who have benefited by resorting to massage therapies too. The only word of advice is that don’t try out any procedure on your own. Be it starting any kind of therapy or designing a suitable orthotic, an expert podiatrist’s guidance is the right way to proceed towards a painless and firm step.  

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