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Is Your Foot Pain Caused by Your Sesamoid?

Foot pain

Podiatrists see many different issues throughout the day. They all have varying levels of pain and discomfort that can be alleviated by addressing either a medical or lifestyle change. At the base of your big toe joint is the sesamoid. When the sesamoid is inflamed, podiatrists refer to it as sesamoiditis.

What Is a Sesamoid?

Your tendons are attached to a sesamoid bone. Several joints in the body contain sesamoid bones. The sesamoids of the foot are below the big toe joint, which are 2 pea-shaped bones.

Acting as a guide for the tendons, the sesamoids assist the big toe movement when the big toe pushes off during walking and running. They allow for a stronger push off to help you propel forward. The sesamoids also act as a weight-bearing surface area for the first or largest metatarsal bone (the long bone connected to the big toe), absorbing the shock by the weight placed on the ball of the foot when walking, running and leaping.

Sesamoid injuries can involve the bones, tendons and/or surrounding tissue in the joint. Sports activities put pressure on the ball of the foot, such as running, basketball, football, soccer, golf, tennis, and ballet. In addition, individuals with high arches are at risk of getting sesamoid problems. Frequent use of high-heeled shoes can also be a contributing factor.

Symptoms of a Sesamoid Problems

Sesamoid issues are normally better understood when your podiatrist takes a thorough history and a complete examination. The most common symptoms consist of:

The diagnosis can be verified with imaging tests, such as an x-ray. However, sometimes the little sesamoid bones are challenging to sufficiently visualize on an x-ray test, and therefore other tests may also be considered. The most typically utilized test is an MRI study, but bone scans can also be effective to find problems with the sesamoid bone.


The treatment of sesamoiditis starts with changing shoes. Increasing the cushioning within your shoes can help ease pressure on the affected sesamoid. Particular inserts or custom orthotics shift abnormal pressure away from the swollen bones and surrounding injured soft tissue. Other treatments consist of cortisone injections, rest, avoiding activities that aggravate the bone, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications and ice application to the painful area.

In the unusual circumstance that footwear modifications and rest are inadequate to eliminate the pain, there are surgical treatment alternatives. Nevertheless, these surgeries must be approached carefully after exhausting all conservative treatment options. Alternative and Regenerative medicine treatments are also excellent options so that you can avoid surgery.

Recovery from a sesamoid injury can take months and is often a frustrating experience. Athletes may need an extended period of limited or non-weight-bearing or movement, and typically healing and return to full sports activities can take 3 to 6 months.

If you would like to get a foot pain diagnosis and relief from sesamoiditis, you can visit Gentle Foot Care Clinic and see, Jairo Cruz DPM.  Dr. Cruz is an ethical, compassionate, Board-certified Podiatrist in Tampa that has helped thousands of patients suffering from foot pain and related issues. Contact his Brandon office at (813) 502-5904 or his Zephyrhills office at (813) 782-3233 today for an appointment.

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Jairo Cruz: Podiatrist at Gentle Foot Care Clinic
Dr. Jairo Cruz has many years of healthcare experience and previously practiced in South Tampa on Swann Ave. He is a board-certified podiatrist and specializes in treating all foot and ankle pain and problems including Bunions, Plantar Fasciitis and Heel spurs, Neuromas, Peripheral Neuropathy, Ingrown toenails, Non-healing wounds, corns, calluses, Warts, Cysts, Toenail fungus.

Dr Marc Katz Marc A Katz DPM Dr. Marc Katz is a podiatrist that previously practiced in South Tampa on Swann Ave with Dr. Jairo Cruz DPM. He works closely with Dr. Cruz to create educational materials to help patients and the community. Dr. Katz is recognized as a leader in the Tampa Podiatry community for over 23 years. Dr. Katz has extensive expertise in all areas of foot and ankle medicine and surgery and is Board-Certified. He was an early adopter and is a leader in Minimally-invasive procedures and Regenerative medicine in the podiatry community. Dr. Katz has had many articles published in podiatry journals discussing his procedures and techniques. In addition, Dr. Katz has advanced training in Functional and Holistic Medicine and Nutrition. He is one of a few podiatrists that has taken advanced courses in Prolotherapy, Neural Prolotherapy and Ozone Therapy. Please enjoy the content and I truly hope that you find great benefit. Dr. Katz can be reached at For more information:

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