Bursitis is a common cause of foot pain and discomfort even though it isn’t discussed as often as other conditions. Bursae are found throughout the body. There are around 160 bursae in the body. A bursa is a sac like structure filled with fluid. Bursae are found near major joints in the body especially those that are used repeatedly. Each bursa produces a sac that is filled with fluid which lessens the friction between ligaments, bones and tendons. A bursa can protect you from injuries to the soft tissue from pressure from bones close by; it also helps to prevent wear and tear of moving joints and to absorb shock. Repetitive use of joints can develop into bursitis when the bursa is irritated and inflamed. Increased pressure can also be a contributing factor to this. If a part of the foot is put through increased stress, pressure or friction then more bursas can be formed.
The forefoot area has many bursae. The metatarsal bursae are found near the bottom of the toes. It usually affects the toe next to the big toe also known as the metatarsal head. The metatarsophalangeal bursa is found under the big toe on the inside part of the foot. Also many tiny bursae are found between the metatarsal bones in the intermetatarsal spaces, that is where the term intermetatarsal bursitis is used to describe this type of bursitis.
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