Sesamoids are two very small bone structure (each about the size of a pea) found the underside of the front part of the foot (forefoot) near the big toe.
The sesamoids act like pulleys and provide a smooth surface and act as a smooth canal for the tendons in the big toe to slide and transmit muscle forces. It also assists with weight bearing and helps elevate the bones of the big toe. This makes the sesamoids as a fulcrum during walking (especially during the toe-off phase of the gait cycle).
One of the common problems with sesamoids is Sesamoiditis whereby the sesamoid become inflamed and affecting the surrounding tissues. Thus, the inflammation may cause intense pain below the metatarsal joint in the big toe in the ball of the foot.
Although generally, an x-ray would be able to show and confirm the diagnosis in cases of bone fracture. However, it is difficult to diagnose sesamoids fracture on x-ray due to the small size. A bone scan may be suggested for an accurate diagnosis and to determine the severity of the condition.
The usual home remedy for temporary pain relief associated with sesamoiditis includes rest, ice compression and cushioning the sole of the big toe. Medications to relieve pain may also ease the pain temporarily.
Whilst surgery may usually be needed when left untreated for so long. However, a foot pain specialist, also known as a podiatrist, will usually recommend non-invasive conservative management to relieve pain and prevent the condition from worsening over time.
At East Coast Podiatry Clinic Singapore, the podiatrists will usually offer thorough biomechanical and musculoskeletal assessments of the lower limb to confirm the diagnosis. Once a diagnosis is confirmed, your treatment plan will be discussed accordingly to avoid complications such as disability of the foot and affected quality of life.