Plantar Plate Tear

Updated: Sep 29, 2019

Cause: Repetitive trauma to the forefoot causing the tissue that holds the toe to the metatarsal (ball of foot) to tear.

Appearance: Pain centered over the head of the affected metatarsal bone. Pain with “push up” of the toe.

Treatment: Offloading in a walking boot for 4 weeks combined with ice and anti-inflammatory medication (if ok to take). If this does not resolve pain, surgery may be necessary to re-attach the tissue. Orthotics are useful for preventing recurrence.

Long-term prognosis: If treated soon after injury, full return to sports is likely without issue. If left untreated, surgery may be needed.

Who to call: Podiatrist, orthopedic surgeon

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