How badly Fibromyalgia affects your feet.

By Madeline R. Vann, MPH 
Medically revised by Farrokh Sohrabi, MD

Treatment with fibromyalgia should extend from the top of the head to the tip of the toes, literally. Although the feet are not the most likely location to experience pain from fibromyalgia, in a recent article published in the journal  Arthritis Research and Therapy , approximately half of the 202 patients with fibromyalgia studied reported foot problems.

“Compensating pain in the foot causes pain in the knees, hips and lower back,” says Dennis Frisch, DPM, a private podiatrist in Boca Raton, Florida. If you are already dealing with the symptoms of fibromyalgia, pain is added that you do not need. In addition, the pain in the foot increases the risk of you falling and having an injury or simply being less active than you would like.

Most likely, with fibromyalgia you know the pain that other people simply ignore. “In general, because people with fibromyalgia are more sensitive to pain and less tolerant to pain, they are more sensitive to pain everywhere,” says Dr. Frisch. In fact, experts believe that at least one in four people have pain, but many, if not most, simply do not receive treatment.

Reconnecting the points.

There are also common sources of pain in the foot that are not directly related to fibromyalgia, but may be intensified by having this condition. An example is Morton’s neuroma, a benign enlargement of a nerve that causes a tingling and throbbing pain between the third and fourth toes. This unpleasant condition can be treated with cortisone injections or surgery.

Planting fasciitis is also a common source of pain in the foot. With this condition, the soft connective tissue under the foot becomes inflamed and painful. It is often the result of bad choices in footwear. Choosing a support arch can help prevent pain.

Be active despite pain in the foot

The problem with foot pain, says Frisch, is that it becomes a vicious circle. Because people with fibromyalgia often feel fatigued, they may not get enough physical activity to feel better. However, if they begin to try to develop physical activity, initially they may feel some discomfort or even hurt their feet, blame fibromyalgia and stop trying to be active. “Generally, for fibromyalgia, the recommendation is to walk,” adds Frisch.

If you want to move around with fibromyalgia and avoid unnecessary foot pain, try these steps:.

  • Get together with your doctor  You should, of course, see your podiatrist if you feel pain in your feet. But meeting with your podiatrist or doctor when you are trying to start an exercise regimen may help you make better decisions and keep your feet healthy.
  • Choose the right shoes. “Make sure you have the right shoe for the activity you are going to do,” advises Frisch. If you can afford it, it pays to pay a little more for a quality shoe that will help prevent pain. Look for shoes that have a wide toe box, a support arch and a sole that provides both support and flexibility.
  • Start gently  Fibromyalgia is a somewhat unpredictable condition, says Frisch. On a good day, you may be tempted to exaggerate the exercise or use a high heel; Choose moderation if you want to avoid pain.
  • Wait and accept some inconvenience. A little discomfort when you start an exercise program is not unusual. But if you feel pain, it’s time to call your doctor.
  • Change to the lower heels for daily use.  If you love heels, keeping height up to about an inch is best for your fibromyalgia symptoms, says Frisch. If you really want to wear a higher heel, pack your comfortable shoes in a large bag so you can make a quick and comfortable change. Finally, remember Frisch, remember that your podiatrist can treat pain in the foot and make recommendations for better footwear and other changes but can not address the great image of fibromyalgia. A medical team approach is even better for the complete management of fibromyalgia..


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