Burning legs, aching calves and numbness in the feet are very prevalent complications that have led to a lot of doctor visits for relief. Pain in your foot may be caused by a problem in some area of the foot. Such problems leading to foot pain could occur in the tendons, fascia, bones, ligaments, blood vessels, nerves and muscles. The causes of left foot pain can be analyzed from a narrow point of view based on the area and by looking at some of the main causes linked with a sore left foot. However, medical attention may be required in a case where the cause is not obvious like pain in left foot resulting from a fall.

Pain in Left Foot, What Is It?



One of the most common arthritis forms is osteoarthritis that usually breaks down joint cartilage, leading to a buildup of pain in bone spurs, loss of cartilage, soreness and inflammation. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that attacks joints’ linings, leading to pain and inflammation. Even though arthritis is a disease of the joints, it can cause pain that may reach the adjacent foot muscles.


Back Problems

The conditions responsible for back pain could also lead to foot pain. In the condition of a spinal stenosis, the spinal canal gradually narrows, leading to pressurized nerves. It normally affects individuals above 50 and can be a result of arthritis, spinal injury or scoliosis. Such kind of pressure can invade the nerve roots while they leave the spinal cord to develop the sciatic nerve. Irritation in the nerves causes a lot of pain. 

Sciatica is usually a painful inflammation emanating from the sciatic nerve and can naturally be felt on one body side and that is why you may develop pain in left foot only. It is not easy to diagnose sciatica and it may just die out unnoticed. It can result from spinal stenosis.


Peripheral Neuropathy

For some individuals, foot and leg (also hand and arm) pain could emanate from neuropathy, a complication of the peripheral motor, autonomic and sensory nerves connecting the spinal cord to our skin, muscles and internal organs. 

Usually, neuropathy can lead to numbness, heavy sensation and tingling. It normally begins from the feet and could lead to a burning sensation affecting your legs. Some cases could lead to a loss of the ability to feel the sensation in the legs, which can turn out to be a risky situation for infection and further injury.


Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is the most prevalent cause of heel pain. It results from an inflammation and irritation of the plantar fascia, which is a group of tough tissue that connects the heel bone to the foot toes. The main symptom is an acute heel pain, especially in the morning. It may also be accompanied by arch pain.

It is important to rest, do foot muscle and heel stretches. Over-the counter medication could also help to relieve the pain. To help the healing process, shoes characterized with a good arch support and a cushioned sole are recommended.


Heel Spurs

These are unusual bone growths on the heel bone bottom that could be a result of an unusual gait, walking or posture, unsuitable shores or some activities such as running. Spurs could lead to foot pain during standing or walking activities. However, it is not mandatory that any person with heel spurs will experience foot pain. Heel spurs could also be realized in people having plantar fasciitis, although they do not lead to the condition itself. Foot pain from heel spurs will mostly affect individuals having high arches or flat feet.

Treatment for heel spurs can be through the use of cutout heel pad and custom-made insert (orthotic) worn inside the shoe. Wear shores that fit your feet perfectly. Shock-absorbing soles can also be used. Over-the counter medications can be taken to relieve pain. Most importantly, rest and get some physical therapy. Though rare, a surgery can be conducted.


A Fracture of the Heel Bone (Calcaneus)

This is the foot bone that gets fractured in most cases. It results from a high impact on the heel, especially coming from a high-height fall or through a car accident. Injuries could also occur due to a bone crack from vigorous exercises or from a high fall causing shattered bones. The main symptoms include bruising, swelling, heel pain, walking difficulties and limping.

It is important to rest from bearing weights usually with crutches, pad the heel thoroughly, cast or splint to offer protection for the heel bone. Pain relievers, physical therapy or at times surgery would do.



This is the inflammation and pain in the foot’s ball commonly caused by a strenuous activity or through ill-fitting shoes. Normally, it is known as a stone bruise too.

The treatment is usually done through resting and icing the foot, pain relievers, using comfortable footwear and shoe inserts to reduce pressure to the foot’s ball.


Morton's Neuroma

This is the tissue thickening around the nerve between the toe bases normally between the 3rd and 4th toe. Common symptoms include numbness, foot pain or odd sensations over the foot’s ball. It normally affects women and can originate from wearing tight shoes or high heels.

Treatment could include the use of shoe inserts for reducing nerve pressure, injections or steroids into the painful region, stopping the use of high-heeled and narrow-toe box shoes, avoiding any other activities piling stress on the neuroma, taking pain relievers and doing surgery in some rare cases.



This condition happens when the tendons adjacent to the big toe get inflamed through an injury.

Make sure you rest. You can use ice on the affected area. Use a foot pad under your toe in a shoe that is comfortable. Tap the big toe to immobilize the joint to enhance healing. Use low-heeled shoes and steroid injections as well.

Pain in Left Foot, When to Seek Medical Care

Pain in left foot is usually devastating although it does not threaten your life. However in some occasions, an appointment with your podiatrist is highly recommended:

  • An underlying medical condition that is accompanied by a greater risk of injuring the feet seriously or ulcers and infections like diabetes or maybe a neurological condition would require medical attention.

  • A red and swollen foot, pain in feet accompanied by chills, fever or other body symptoms causing a great concern indicative of a possible infection also need a doctor's attention.

  • A foot fracture, a sudden worsening of the foot pain, a situation where you had a recent fall, stumble or other trauma would also require critical attention. 


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