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Friebergs Disease


Freiberg’s disease is a relatively uncommon disorder that affects the joints of metatarsals (the bones that extend from the arch of your foot to your toes).

The disease is associated with the gradual collapse or disintegration of the joint surfaces between the metatarsals as well as the formation of abnormal joint tissue. Symptoms include chronic history of forefoot pain, foot stiffness, and walking with a limp.

How did I get this?

The specific events or factors that cause Freiberg’s disease are not completely understood.

However, there are several risk factors for the disease, which include age and gender (Freiberg’s disease occurs most often in female adolescents and young women, although the disease can occur in any person at any age), excessively long metatarsals, and foot trauma.

What can I do about it?

  • Freiberg’s disease may be asymptomatic or it may heal without treatment. But if symptoms are present, the following will be beneficial:
  • Rest the metatarsal joints allowing the joint Inflammation and irritation to go away.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) are used commonly for pain.
  • Seek podiatry consultation.

What help can I get for this?

  • Podiatrist may advise comfort shoes with metatarsal pad to help offload the area and for protection, and a camwalker boot for protected weight bearing for a period of two to six weeks to allow the symptoms to settle.
  • Foot and ankle surgeon for surgical treatment if the nonoperative intervention fails to control the symptoms.

When will it get better?

Fortunately, the outcomes of both non-operative and operative management are good to excellent and most patients are able to return to previous activity.