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Unexplained Toe pain

Old 02-26-11, 06:51 AM
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Mzungu
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Unexplained Toe pain

Two years ago I started getting severe pain in my second toe on my right foot. It comes after about 1-2 hours of continuous riding. If i stop every hour it doesnt come. If i stop and massage it will hurt worse before it goes away. It started suddenly. I am 55 years old and 75kg. I still ride all day rides on the weekends, but there are times i have to either stop or take my foot out of the cleat and play around with that foot.

Two years ago I got a new road bike, but the same thing happens when I ride my mountain bike continuously. I have two pairs of shoes and it happens with both of them. neither shoes have paddeid inserts. I use spd pedals. Before two years ago i could ride hours without stopping without this ever happening.

Yesterday I rode with a pair of very flexible non bike sandals on spd pedals and it started in 15 minutes.

Anyone have an idea? We don't have sport specialists around here. I asked a couple of GP doc riders and they had no idea.

I would be forever grateful for a solution.
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Old 02-26-11, 06:54 AM
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do both bikes have the same kind of cleat-- like an spd?

possibly the cleat's hitting some sort of pressure point on your foot that's aggavating a nerve that ends up in your toe? have you tried insoles to more evenly distribute the pressure on the sole of your foot?
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Old 02-26-11, 06:57 AM
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Larger shoes might help.
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Old 02-26-11, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
Larger shoes might help.
he tried the sandal solution, and that didn't seem to work though.. so it doesn't seem like a small shoe thing. :shrugs:
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Old 02-26-11, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
Larger shoes might help.
+1
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Old 02-26-11, 11:43 AM
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What kind of bike shoes? My guess is that your forefoot is being bowed upward, or concave, in the center by the shoe (even worse with sandals) and this is pinching a nerve. Hence massaging hurts to begin with. If your shoes are Specialized, their insole has to bump under the center of the forefoot, because most people have the problem of nerve pinch there caused by the bottom of the foot being convex. In any case, probably something that can be resolved by using different insoles. Experiment.
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Old 02-26-11, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Mzungu View Post
If i stop and massage it will hurt worse before it goes away.
Gout?
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Old 02-26-11, 10:57 PM
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see a podiatrist. I'm surprised that the GP's didn't tell you to go see one. According to the podiatrist that I went to see, we're all headed towards hammer toe, and on the way there it isn't uncommon to develop Morton's neuroma. This might explain your symptoms.

You may have to get better shoes. I'm wavering about getting some D2's.
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Old 02-27-11, 01:03 AM
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If the pain is in a joint, it could be arthritis. An X-ray can tell you whether or not that is the case.


unterhausen, why are we all headed towards hammer toe?
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Old 02-27-11, 09:46 AM
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He didn't really explain, but implied that almost all 80 y.o. people have it. One of the sites I saw about it said that exercise and stretching counteract hammer toe, so my thought is that the lack of same may help promote it.
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Old 02-27-11, 11:33 AM
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I recently switched from cheap 'walkable' SPD mountain shoes to a quality, very stiff-soled road shoe (still SPD). The issue I was having with numb toes went away immediately. It was the best return on investment I ever got from any bike gear; maybe a similar equipment change would help you, too.

I'm also surprised nobody yet said to get a bike fitting. They might be able to pinpoint the cause and solution.
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Old 03-16-11, 10:08 PM
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I'm curious if the OP tracked this down.
My case of Morton's neuroma finally seems to be resolving after almost 5 months.
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Old 03-17-11, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
I'm curious if the OP tracked this down.
My case of Morton's neuroma finally seems to be resolving after almost 5 months.
You're lucky, if indeed your symptoms subside. The only "cure" for nerve damage is surgery.

Although, I think there is a lot can be done about Mortons, maybe you can change your pedal stroke and get just the right orthotic. I've always wonder why riding into a headwind causes more problems than riding hills.
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Old 03-17-11, 07:21 AM
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I think I caught it soon enough that it didn't involve much damage. I had the bad habit of pedaling with my toes down/foot almost vertical sometimes, and I'm conscious not to do that any more.
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Old 03-24-11, 04:17 AM
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First thanks for all the replies. I posted and expected an email notification as i lurk here in spurts.

Originally Posted by shorthanded View Post
do both bikes have the same kind of cleat-- like an spd?

possibly the cleat's hitting some sort of pressure point on your foot that's aggavating a nerve that ends up in your toe? have you tried insoles to more evenly distribute the pressure on the sole of your foot?
Both shoes have spd. Recently someone else suggested insoles, but now i realize one shoe has insoles.

Bigger shoes. I think i might try that but doubt because it also happens with sandals on a platform.

The stiffer shoe might be something to try.

erik
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Old 03-24-11, 04:22 AM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
see a podiatrist. I'm surprised that the GP's didn't tell you to go see one. According to the podiatrist that I went to see, we're all headed towards hammer toe, and on the way there it isn't uncommon to develop Morton's neuroma. This might explain your symptoms.

You may have to get better shoes. I'm wavering about getting some D2's.
Like i said, we dont have many specialists where I live.
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Old 07-03-14, 09:59 PM
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So I found how to alleviate the problem. Someone said they have same problem and to put foam earplugs in between the affected toes. that usually prevents the problem. So i must be pinching a nerve. It even happens when i hike for long periods. i thought it might help someone else.
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Old 07-06-14, 11:58 PM
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thanks for checking back. It does sound like you have Morton's. The thing that podiatrists prescribe for that is a metatarsal pad, which has the effect of spreading all of your toes. You might want to try that.
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Old 07-07-14, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Mzungu View Post
Two years ago I started getting severe pain in my second toe on my right foot. It comes after about 1-2 hours of continuous riding. If i stop every hour it doesnt come. If i stop and massage it will hurt worse before it goes away. It started suddenly. I am 55 years old and 75kg. I still ride all day rides on the weekends, but there are times i have to either stop or take my foot out of the cleat and play around with that foot.

Two years ago I got a new road bike, but the same thing happens when I ride my mountain bike continuously. I have two pairs of shoes and it happens with both of them. neither shoes have paddeid inserts. I use spd pedals. Before two years ago i could ride hours without stopping without this ever happening.

Yesterday I rode with a pair of very flexible non bike sandals on spd pedals and it started in 15 minutes.

Anyone have an idea? We don't have sport specialists around here. I asked a couple of GP doc riders and they had no idea.

I would be forever grateful for a solution.


I had the exact symptoms when I toured around New Zealand a few years back but the problem only got worse and worse. After returning home a month later, (ouch) I went to the podiatrist and he scanned my feet and found intermetatarsal bursitis, which is swelling of the bursa between the 3-4 and 4-5 metatarsals on both of my feet. When the nerve is compressed by the swelling it sends crazy feedback into my feet. The symptoms and solutions are very similar to a Morton Neuroma. The solution to my feet problem is a set of orthotics that help to spread the bones apart and relieve the pressure on the nerve. If I were you I would go to your GP or a podiatrist and get the problem checked out before you cause long term problem. I didn't as I was on a long distance cycle tour and did permanent damage to my feet.

Good luck

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Old 08-22-14, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
thanks for checking back. It does sound like you have Morton's. The thing that podiatrists prescribe for that is a metatarsal pad, which has the effect of spreading all of your toes. You might want to try that.
Wow first time someone had a name for it. Now after reading i think i will wear sandals more.
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Old 08-22-14, 10:33 AM
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glue a metatarsal pad to your sandals I suspect you can get some closed cell foam and make them yourself. The ones that I have bought were all gel, which strikes me as less than fully satisfying. My orthotics have pads made out of a closed cell foam. It is better to have the pads under a protective layer, I'm guessing there are people that will do that sort of modification to a shoe in your country.
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Old 08-26-14, 06:05 AM
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Although it is going to be difficult, I really think you ought to find a podiatrist.

People on this board might be able to give you some advice, but none of us are doctors, and obviously none of us have examined your feet. An improper diagnosis could result in an improper remedy, which can make your problem worse.

Is there no way for you to (for example) get to Nairobi to find a foot doctor?
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Old 08-28-14, 06:08 AM
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like I said the problem is solved if I put the pads between toes. Nairobi would be expensive trip.
Thanks for advice though.
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