Metatarsalgia: distal metatarsal osteotomies

Foot Ankle Clin. 2011 Dec;16(4):583-95. doi: 10.1016/j.fcl.2011.08.009.


Metatarsalgia is a common pathologic entity. It refers to pain at the MTP joints. Pain in the foot unrelated to the MTP joints (such as Morton’s neuroma) must be distinguished from those disorders, which lead to abnormal pressure distribution, reactive calluses, and pain. Initial treatment options for metatarsalgia include modifications of shoe wear, metatarsal pads, and custom-made orthoses. If conservative treatment fails, operative reconstructive procedures in terms of metatarsal osteotomies should be considered. Lesser metatarsal osteotomy is an effective and well-accepted method for the management of metatarsalgia. The main purpose of these osteotomies is to decrease prominence of the symptomatic metatarsal head. The distal metatarsal oblique osteotomy (Weil osteotomy) with its modification represents the best evaluated distal metatarsal osteotomy in terms of outcome studies and biomechanical analysis. The role of the Weil osteotomy in metatarsalgia owing to a subluxed or dislocated MTP joint is to bring the metatarsal head proximal to the callus and to provide axial decompression of the toe to correct the deformity contributing to metatarsalgia.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Metatarsal Bones / surgery*
  • Metatarsalgia / etiology
  • Metatarsalgia / surgery*
  • Osteotomy / adverse effects
  • Osteotomy / methods*