- We focus on what has worked for 10,000+ patients & medical research.
- The #1 goal is to keep costs LOW and treatment SIMPLE.
- Just remember this is for educational reference only.
- If you have a medical problem visit with your personal doctor.
- Please comment if any questions!
Outside of the Foot Pain [Lateral Foot Pain]
Does The Bone on the Outside of the Foot Stick Out? [Best Treatment]
Does the bone on the outside of the foot stick out? 95+% of the time this is a bone called your 5th metatarsal or the metatarsal styloid process!
- We will show you an animated diagnosis & treatment guide, photos and the best FAST treatment options for outside of the foot pain!
- These are Simple & EASY options that we have seen success with.
- Also included is our outside of the foot pain treatment video guide!
So, Let’s Get STARTED!
- Fifth toe pain usually has nothing wrong with the bone unless it has recently been broken. The pain usually results from pressure against the front of the shoe causing a callous or ingrown toenail.
- The fifth toe joint can cause a Tailor’s bunion to occur. This can also result in nerve pain and arthritis of the fifth toe joint.
- The bone connecting to the fifth toe is called the fifth metatarsal. It is possible to develop a stress fracture or “Jones” fracture.
- It is also possible to have pain along the tendons and nerves along the outside of the ankle from pressure against the outside of the shoe.
Click on the photo gallery to see descriptions!
Overview of bones that stick out on the side of the foot:
- The bone on the outside of the foot sticks out is called the 5th metatarsal bone and it is the bone that connects your midfoot/rearfoot to your 5th toe.
- This bone is the first bone in your forefoot to make contact with the ground during walking and run.
- Your heel bone and 5th toe could also be the bones sticking out on your foot!
- It is very commonly injured during running and and ankle sprains, it can also develop a mini-bunion called a bunionette.
Causes of bones sticking out on the outside of your foot:
- There are many different causes of foot pain on the outside of the foot.
- Most of the time this is just normal anatomy and has more to do with genetic differences within your foot.
- But sometimes there could be abnormal diseases and problems developing.
- 95% of the time in our experience it is normal foot anatomy.
- Read below to find what is causing your pain!
Specific outside of the foot bone sticking out conditions:
These are the specific disorders and treatments for the bone sticking out on the outside of your foot!
5th toe hammer toe:
- One of the most common prominences on the fifth toe is due to the formation of hammertoe.
- Hammertoe is the abnormal bending of your fifth toe due to tightness in a shoe 90+ percent of the time.
- The pressure from the shoe will cause at thickening of the skin, this is a combination of either a corn or a callus.
- This can become very painful and become red and start robbing for some people.
- Hammertoe is best treated by gel padding, and trimming down this court callus.
- We generally have a lot of success by changing shoes, patting and avoiding surgery for the fifth toe.
- Just behind the fifth toe, where the toe connects to the big toe joint/foot, a person can develop a Tailor’s bunion.
- A Tailor’s bunion is caused by the improper function of the foot and can slowly progress through your life.
- Some people naturally have a thickening in this area, but other people it can be caused by tight shoes and lead to sick inflamed tissue called the bursa.
- The fifth metatarsal joint bursa is a sack of inflamed tissue that protects and rubs against the bone prominence against your shoe.
- A Bursa is very spongy to the touch but can also become very painful.
- In our clinic we generally treat this bursa with cortisone injection and almost in one visit it can go away for most people.
- At other times a gel pad can be utilized in this could really make the pain go away quickly. Sometimes surgery could be utilized to make this go away.
5th metatarsal injuries or pain:
- Further down the foot closer to your ankle, along the side of the foot you can develop further bone prominences. There is a bone here called the fifth metatarsal bone. This is behind the fifth toe joint closer to your ankle. There is a long bone that flares out roughly in the middle of your foot called your styloid process of the fifth metatarsal.
- In children ranging from ages 10 to 14, there can be a growth plate here that could cause pain. It can deftly cause the area to become swollen.
- If you feel like you have an injury here, an x-ray can show what is going on in this area. In the age range of 10-14 it could be a growth plate, and you must be very careful that you don’t truly have an injury.
- At the styloid process of the fifth metatarsal, there is also a very thick tendon that attaches into this joint.
- If this tendon become swollen it can deftly create a swelling on the side of your foot that can look like a bump. This is called peroneal tendinitis.
- If you felt that you twister sprained her ankle, this tendon might have been injured. It is very common when your foot turns down and in.
Fracture of the fifth metatarsal:
- If you feel like you suffered an injury like a bump a twist or large fall. You could’ve very easily broken your fifth metatarsal joint.
- This is many different names, but it is most commonly known as a Jones fracture.
- If you feel like you might’ve fractured this area, come see us or a podiatrist near you and get this foot and ankle joint x-ray. An x-ray of this fifth metatarsal bone will show whether you have a fracture or not.
- Unfortunately, if you do have fracture it takes a long time six weeks or more to take pressure off this bone and let it heal. Some people do need surgery.
Lumps, Bumps and soft tissue swelling on the outside of the foot:
- On top of the foot, but still on the outside is a muscle called your extensor digitorum brevis muscle. This is a soft area on top of your foot. This muscle could very easily get bruised with a bump, or it could even develop a large ganglion cyst on this.
- If the area is shrinking and decreasing in size, they could easily be fluid buildup in this muscle or cystic area. The best thing to do is to get this ultrasound or even get an MRI for continues to cause a problem.
- There is no way to 100% guarantee that there is not something cancerous here, although statistics do show that it is a very very low percent of the time.
- If the area is painful, and a ganglion cyst is shown to be the cause, sometimes it makes sense to train this with the syringe in the office. Most podiatrist can do this in the office without taking you to the operating room.
Fat pad on the side of the foot:
- At the same time if you stand, and small little regions develop on the side of your foot, especially in groups this could be a fat herniation.
- Herniation of your fat pad on the outside of your heel or foot is called a Piezogenic papule.
- A Piezogenic papule sometimes can look very scary, but it is not anything dangerous to worry about.
- I have never personally seen one removed, and you probably don’t need surgery or injections. Treating the cosmetics of your foot can sometimes result in even bigger problems.
- We personally discourage surgery for any type of cosmetic reason, only for functional reasons.
- This can be a hard clump that develops on the side of your foot, it is a combination of a callus that plugs sweat glands on your foot.
- Visiting your podiatrist for a porokeratosis can lead to excision of these with the blade.
- There is not as painful as it sounds! Sometimes we can solve really bad pain within a couple minutes, and it stays away for good.
Tumors on the side of the foot:
- The most common type of tumor is what’s called a safe tumor.
- This is called the lipoma. Lipomas are very common in people in this is a buildup of fat in a certain area.
- Lipomas generally are not dangerous.
- It is 100% impossible to guarantee that something is not dangerous.
- Sometimes you can develop a cancerous tumor on the foot, although this is extremely rare.
- This is one in a million type stuff. But that being said you do have to visit your podiatrist or foot and ankle specialist to have this evaluated.
- Tumors that are cancerous or malignant on the foot are extremely rare.
Skin conditions on the side of the foot:
- Sometimes you could have foot fungus, dermatologic conditions such as inclusion cyst, or strange looking calluses.
- Something we see frequently are also warts. Warts can be painful and very difficult to treat.
The bone can stick out in 3 places:
- This Bunionette can be treated at home and the pain could be removed by following the treatment guide provided by clicking on the picture, but surgery is the only way to remove the deformity and get your foot looking like normal.
- If you choose to control the pain at home you should get yourself some wider shoes, some over the counter inserts like Powersteps and correct and conditions that are causing poor foot biomechanics.
Learn More with this guide:
- There are 3 conditions that commonly occur at the base or styloid process of the 5th Metatarsal.
- A fracture of the 5th met base as shown above- this may require surgery or casting for a month or more; this really hurts and you are barely able to walk on the side of your foot.
- If it does not hurt, then this thickening is a completely normal bone.
- If there is pain across the entire outside of the foot then it may be nerve pain front any injury radiating if it feels like there is numbness, burning and tingling.
- But if you have been running heavily lately, or standing on your feet for long periods of time this may be a 5th metatarsal stress fracture.
- This guide will help you treat your 5th toe pain.
- This may be related to an ingrown toenail, broken toe, sprained toe or nerve pain!
Other Outside of the Foot Pain Causes:
Calluses are thick patches of skin that appear in sites of friction against the shoe, the floor or any other part of the foot. The danger is a blister can form underneath the callus!
A corn looks like a little pebble that can form, they usually even occur with a callus around them. This can be exceptionally painful.
Follow our at home pain relief guides, how to trim your nails properly and even how to remove them permanently.
These occur from stubbing your toe, so learn how to deal with them properly! Is it broken or is it just bruised, find out with this guide.
Bone and Joint Problems:
This is when you toe looks really big and as if though its popping out at the base.
This is when you have a crooked or curved toe.
5th Metatarsal Pain:
Muscle & Tendon Pain:
Outside of the Foot Home Treatment:
- If you have 5th toe pain, tailor’s bunion pain, outside of the foot pain or other lateral foot pain, this guide is for you!
- These are the recommended treatment products that will help you get better the fastest.
- The key is to stop your foot from turning outward and causing further damage to your foot.
The real key to fix outside of the foot pain in order:
1) Most important is a good shoe & a good insole for your shoe.
- Good shoes and good foot insoles are the best value and best long term option.
- This will stop your foot from turning outward.
- Give these 1-2 weeks of effort and you will really notice the pain relief.
- This does not instantly fix the pain, but prevents future damage.
2) Gel pad to offload the toe.
- This will give your toes some cushion to keep pressure off the toes.
- Read below to see the specific gel pads for each specific condition.
3) Ankle brace for the most possible correction.
- Check the recommended braces below.
- For ankle pain this is almost guaranteed to improve your problem
4)Menthol based cream for pain relief.
- Creams and gels like biofreeze act like ice but save you 20 minutes!
- Check below for our recommended pain relief options.
Best Treatment Products:
5th Toe Gel Pads:
- Fifth toe gel pads can stop your fifth toe or your Taylor’s bunion from rubbing against the side of your shoe.
- There are downsides because these don’t last forever, and they do start to break apart and develop older.
- They can be a low-cost option for tighter shoes during business meetings and at work.
Topical Pain Relief Creams:
- Menthol based creams have been studied medically and show safety and excellent results.
- This is best for nerve irritation.
- This can help with the nerve pain on the outside of the foot. Just don’t use this as your only treatment option.
- This is not fluff, these are scientifically backed!
- Bio-freeze is cost effective an shows great results.
- This is more for people who have difficulty sleeping or walking due to significant issues.
Massage & Ice Products:
- Ice is the an excellent option that can be safe for almost everyone.
- There are many nerves, ligaments and tendons on the outside of your foot.
- This can help calm the inflammation until you fix the biomechanics making your foot turn outward.
- There is some debate whether icing is worth doing, but for chronic pain this can help limit the need for medications and keep your options open.
- This works great for your arch, less for the ball of the foot.
- The more muscle and ligament tissue there is, the better ice will work there.
- These can work great for loosening your muscles.
- More flexibility will make your foot turn out less.
- This is a very counter-intuitive way to take pressure off of the outside of your foot!
- This allows less tightness and pressure on the ball of your foot.
- This is very effective for the arch, the gastrocnemius or calf muscle and for the hamstring and thigh muscles.
- This also works very well for the gluteus muscles if you are having butt cheek or hip pain.
Best Shoes for Side of Foot Pain:
- Getting a great supportive pair of shoes will make sure that there is pressure removed from the outside of your foot
- This is especially important if you have a have flat feet.
- Consider shoes combined with a good supportive orthotic for best pain relief!.
- The following link will show you what our favorites are.
Best Orthotics for Side of Foot Pain:
- Orthotics are the single most important way to improve your outside of the foot pain, Seriously!
- Most people don’t think orthotics will fix their foot pain.
- Besides trauma, 95% of all 5th toe, middle of the foot and outside of the ankle pain can be improved with orthotics.
- This is because orthotics help your foot from twisting out and compressing against your shoe when you walk.
- Don’t take our word for it, read the reviews!
Most Important Tips For Orthotics:
- Make sure you have a roomy enough shoe.
- I’m warning you right now, don’t try to stuff a full length orthotic into a tiny tight shoe, it won’t work.
- If you have tighter or dress shoes: try the dress shoe or 3/4″ orthotics.
Full length orthotics give you the most correction and improvement:
- If you have roomy enough shoes like running shoes or work boots. Get a full length orthotic.
- They cushion under the front of your foot and prevent it from twisting out against the outside of your shoe as much as possible.
- These are one of the best possible options for medium and heavy duty correction!
These orthotics are for slimmer shoes, without laces:
- If you are tight in the front of your shoes, or the shoes are tighter, these 3/4″ might be the best choice for you.
- But if you have a choice, the full length orthotics are much, much more supportive!
- So if you wear work boots or running shoes, get the full length, they get you more support.
Dress Shoe orthotics:
- These are premium leather orthotic recommendations for dress shoes.
- If you have a tight dress shoe get the 3/4″ orthotic.
Outside of the Foot Trauma:
- If you think you might have a broken 5th metatarsal fracture, a Jones fracture , a stubbed or broken 5th toe, these products may be of assistance.
- This guide is meant for only after getting your foot evaluated by a foot and ankle specialist first!
- Always remember to see a foot and ankle specialist like a podiatrist if you are having severe outside of the foot pain or a broken bone!
5th Toe or 5th Metatarsal Injury Treatment:
- If you have a traumatic injury such as a broken 5th metatarsal fracture, a Jones fracture , a stubbed or broken 5th toe: consider protecting your foot!
- The best way to do this is of course to see your podiatrist and get evaluated with an x-ray, ultrasound and potentially even an MRI or CT scan.
- If you are unable to do so it may benefit you to be in a cast, fractured boot, or even keep the weight off of it with a rolling knee scooter or other protective devices.
- We as podiatrists frequently take patients off work for very long period of time when they suffer a traumatic injury, unfortunately there is no other way around us in labor jobs.
- If you have a sit down job there are ways to get people back to work quicker, but this can be very difficult otherwise.
Outside of the Foot Boot Treatment:
- There are pros and cons to using a boot to treat your outside of the foot injury. If you are immobilized too long the cons are that you will gradually become stiff and overworked to your other leg. The Pros are that you injured lateral foot will hopefully have a chance to gradually heal!
- Our favorite fracture boots and their supplies:
Offloading and Scooter treatment:
- Sometimes the best thing to do is to completely keep pressure off of the outside of your foot.
- In the early stages of the disease there are benefits to offloading and can give you outside of the foot relief!
- These are favorite knee scooters and walking devices:
Outside of the Foot Compression Brace:
- A good compression brace can stabilize your foot from turning outward.
- This prevents your foot from pronated.
- Pronated foot will turn your foot outward in your foot will rub on the outside of the shoe.
- For many of her patients this has solved their pain and is very comfortable to wear inside your shoe.
- This solves both pain and outward pronation for a relatively low cost.
Outside of the Foot Stability Brace:
- Stability brace goes little bit further than the compression brace to stop your foot from turning out.
- At the same time this is a little bit bulkier and does not affect every shoe.
- We find people are little bit happier trying the compression brace before the stability brace.
- One of the most common biomechanical causes of toenail problems, bunions, hammer toes and outside of the foot problems is poorly fitting shoes.
- A well fitting and proper shoes can sometimes even make all the difference in heel pain and overall foot pain.
- If you have shoes that are too small or too big this can result in crowding or too much motion and sliding within your shoe.
- This can cause people to walk improperly and put more weight on their knees, hips and lower back!
- We usually find that people make some of the 10 mistakes that we talk about.
- Watch the below treatment video to make sure that this never happens again!
Outside of the Foot Pain [Lateral Foot Pain]