Foot and ankle problems usually fall into the following categories:
- Acquired from improper footwear, physical stress, or small mechanical changes within the foot.
- Arthritic foot problems, which typically involve one or more joint.
- Congenital foot problems, which occur at birth, are generally inherited.
- Infectious foot problems, which are caused by bacterial, viral, or fungal disorders.
- Neoplastic disorders, usually called tumors, which are the result of abnormal growth of tissue and may be benign or malignant.
- Traumatic foot problems, which are associated with foot and ankle injuries.
Osteoporosis, which means “porous bone,” is a condition in which bones become weak and thin due to lack of calcium. People with osteoporosis have an increased risk of bone fractures (breaks).
Osteoporosis is often called the “silent disease” because many people do not realize they have it. However, pain can occur when a bone becomes so weak that it breaks.
Osteoporosis is most commonly seen in women over age 50, but younger people and men can also have it. While the bones of the spine, hip, and wrist are the most common bones to become fractured as a result of osteoporosis, metatarsals and other bones in the feet can be affected. In fact, some people first find out they have osteoporosis because of a fracture in the foot.
Increased pain with walking, accompanied by redness and swelling on the top of the foot, is a sign that you should see a foot and ankle surgeon for x-rays and examination.
Additional information can be found by reading Toe and Metatarsal Fractures.