Sesamoid Injuries: Types, Symptoms, and Diagnosis
Jan 22 , 2021
Tags - Sesamoid Injuries
A bone formed within a ligament is called Sesamoid Bone. It is usually formed as a result of applied strain.
To provide more context, the function of sesamoid is similar to a pulley’s, where it maintains a smooth surface for ligaments to flow and disseminate muscle forces. Further, Sesamoid in the foot acts as a weight bearing mechanism, absorbing the weight placed in the ball of the foot while moving.
Sesamoids can be seen in multiple joints in the body. In the foot, the sesamoids are shaped as two peas which are formed near the ball of the foot below the main (big) toe joint.
What’s more, Sesamoid injury can damage the bones or ligaments around the joint. In the foot, the sesamoid injury could occur during any activity where pressure is added on the foot.
Here, people who wear high heels often have a high arched foot. Hence they are more likely to develop a sesamoid injury.
Foot Sesamoid Injuries
Sesamoid bone fracture is either a chronic injury or an acute injury.
The Acute Sesamoid bone fracture is due to a trauma, such as a bone hit/forceful impact. It causes pain immediately and swells around the fractured area. But, it does not affect the main big toe joint entirely.
The Chronic Sesamoid bone fracture is caused due to stress and overuse. As a result, it causes long lasting pain around the ball of the foot. Sadly, this pain stays longer, and comes and goes. Further, the pain may get severe with aggressive activities and gets better with rest.
2. Turf Toe
Turf Toe is when the soft tissues and ligaments around the Big toe joint get injured.
This usually occurs when the big toe joint is elongated more than it should. As a result, Turf Toe causes an injury to the sesamoid soft tissues and as well as fracture to the sesamoid bones.
Sesamoiditis is an injury caused due to overuse and additional pressure, comprising chronic sesamoid bone and tendon inflammation.
The pain, associated with sesamoiditis, is long lasting and it comes and goes depending on the type of footwear and pressure added on the foot.
Following factors have an influence on Sesamoiditis:
- High heels or boots
- Flat/higher arches
- Bony feet
- Increased in body weight or training load
- A tendency to run on forefoot
- The size of the sesamoids (the bigger, the higher the risk)
- High impact sports (running, gymnastics,dancing and etc)
Symptoms and Diagnosis
The sesamoid injury symptoms include
- Pain when the big toe is moved
- Tenderness to touch and sensitivity around the ball of the foot
- Pain when you stand/move
- Foot swelling
The sesamoid injuries are diagnosed using X-rays, MRI and CT scans.
Initially, the doctor will try to treat it non-surgically and, if it does not respond, then the doctor would go ahead with the surgery.
The Non surgical treatments include:
- Oral medication
- Steroid injections
- Orthotic devices
- Physical therapy
To prevent sesamoid injuries, wear well fitting, quality shoes with good arch support and cushioning.
Especially, if you are exercising and walking long distances or standing on hard surfaces, wear cushioned shoes which could support the feet well.
Similarly, avoid adding repetitive pressure to the foot and stretch your muscles well before exercise.
To learn more, get in touch with us today.
In the meantime, check our range of comfortable shoes.
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