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Morton's Foot Syndrome

The red lines in the image indicates the big toe and the second toe joints showing that the first metatarsal is shorter. It can also be seen that the second metatarsal bone is thicker which Dr. Morton attributed to the second metatarsal carrying a disproportionate part of the body weight.
Dr. Dudley Morton
Dr. Dudley J. Morton

Correctly labeled as Morton’s Foot Syndrome, this foot type is named after a well know surgeon and teacher of anatomy who discovered the impact of the short first metatarsal on human locomotion. Morton’s Foot was defined by Dr. Morton as a foot with a short first metatarsal bone relative to the second metatarsal bone. Ideally, the far end of those bones should reach the same distance from the heel, so they both can support the body weight during propulsion. Dr. Morton also proposed that the first metatarsal was hypermobile, meaning that it would behave as if dorsiflexed (lifted upward) and therefore mot making proper weight bearing contact with the ground.

We named our website after the Morton's Foot Syndrome because everyone who has this foot structure do have an elevated first metatarsal.  Dr. Morton called it hyper mobile, but that's an area where we thing he was wrong in his assessment.  If you do our foot mechanics assessment, you will notice that when you force your knees to travel over the middle of your feet, you will not be weight bearing on the balls of  your feet behind your big toes (first metatarsal head).  You also have to ask yourself about the concept of being hypermobile just in the first matatarsal complex.  Most people who suffer from hypermobility will display hypermobility problems in other areas of their bodies.  Regardless, whether you call the big toe hypermobile or elevated, the outcome is the same - your first metatarsals and big toes are not properly supporting your body.

 

A deep first web space compared to the second web space is a reliable indicator that you have a short first metatarsal relative to your second metatarsal bone.

A simpler way to recognize Morton’s Foot Syndrome is to look at the first web space. If you look carefully at your feet, you may notice (if you have Morton’s Foot Syndrome) that the space between your big and second toes is cut deeper into the foot than the space between the second and third toes.Dr Morton noticed that people who had a short first metatarsal displayed a different weight bearing pattern that impacted their gait mechanics and posture. Our professional providers tell us that nearly 100% of their pain patients have this foot configuration, and it has become well recognized among neuromuscular pain professionals that Morton’s Foot Syndrome is a major instigator and perpetuator of chronic muscle and joint pain.

Exploring your foot mechanics takes just a few minutes. It will clearly demonstrate the problem and the solution.