Pain Between The 2nd and 3rd Toe Symptom, Causes & Questions

Understand your pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe symptoms, including 8 causes & common questions.

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Contents

  1. 8 Possible Causes
  2. Questions Your Doctor May Ask
  3. Statistics
  4. Related Articles

8 Possible Pain Between The 2nd And 3rd Toe Causes

The list below shows results from the use of our quiz by Buoy users who experienced pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe. This list does not constitute medical advice and may not accurately represent what you have.

Morton neuroma

Morton neuroma, also called by the older name Morton's neuroma, is a thickening of fibrous tissue in the ball of the foot. This tissue encapsulates the nerve leading to the third and fourth toes. It is not actually a tumor of the nerve, as the name suggests.

The thickening is caused by years of trauma, irritation, and/or compression to the feet. High-heeled shoes, especially if narrow or tight, are a common cause. The condition is most often seen in women over age 45.

Symptoms include burning pain in the ball of the foot, especially with walking or running. The condition will not heal on its own and can lead to chronic foot pain.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination of the foot with simple range of motion exercises, and sometimes x-ray.

Treatment includes changing to better-fitting shoes that do not compress the nerve; using orthotics in the shoes to take more pressure off of the nerve; and in some cases the use of corticosteroid injections.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: foot numbness, pain in the sole of the foot, pain when touching the foot, pain in both feet, foot injury

Urgency: Self-treatment

Friction blister on the foot

Friction blisters are very common among both men and women of all ages. They most commonly affect the feet due to lifting heavy loads, repetitive overuse, or ill-fitting shoes. The layers of skin become separated from mechanical force, and the body fills the gap with fluid.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: foot pain, foot blister, blister likely from friction, constant skin changes, foot skin changes

Symptoms that always occur with friction blister on the foot: foot blister, blister likely from friction

Urgency: Self-treatment

Athlete's foot (tinea pedis)

Athlete's foot is a common fungal infection of the feet and/or toes. Warm, moist environments and community showering are common causes of this type of infection.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: foot redness, foot/toe itch, foot skin changes, spontaneous foot pain, peeling between the toes

Symptoms that always occur with athlete's foot (tinea pedis): foot redness

Symptoms that never occur with athlete's foot (tinea pedis): toe injury

Urgency: Self-treatment

Foreign body in foot

A foreign body in foot occurs when something like a splinter, nail, or glass becomes lodged in the skin.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: foot pain, foot stepping on an object

Symptoms that always occur with foreign body in foot: foot pain, foot stepping on an object

Urgency: In-person visit

Pain Between The 2nd And 3rd Toe Symptom Checker

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe

Stress fracture of the foot (marching fracture)

A "March" stress fracture of the foot is named because it's sometimes linked to soldiers marching for a long time. This foot fracture happens because of prolonged stress or weight-bearing.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: constant foot pain, foot pain from overuse, pain in one foot, pain when touching the foot, pain in the top of the foot

Symptoms that always occur with stress fracture of the foot (marching fracture): foot pain from overuse, constant foot pain

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Foot sprain

A foot sprain is damage to ligaments within the foot. The term "sprain" refers to overstretching or tearing of ligaments — the strong, fibrous bands of tissue that hold the bones together within the joints. Foot sprains are usually sports or dance injuries. Any sort of running movement that involves sud...

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Nail infection (paronychia)

Paronychia is an infection of the skin of the fingers or toes, at the place where the skin folds down to meet the nail.

Acute, or sudden onset, paronychia is caused by the staphylococcus bacteria. The organism can gain entry if the nail is cracked, broken, bitten, or trimmed too closely.

Chronic, or ongoing, paronychia is caused by a fungus. Anyone whose work requires their hands to be wet much of the time is susceptible.

People with diabetes or a weakened immune system are more susceptible to nail infections.

Symptoms include sore, reddened, swollen skin around the nail, sometimes with pus collecting under the skin.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination and sometimes skin culture to identify the organism involved.

Treatment for acute paronychia involves having a medical provider clean the wounded nail and drain any infection, and sometimes provide a course of antibiotics.

Treatment for the chronic form involves keeping the skin dry and using an antifungal medication on the affected nail.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: spontaneous finger pain, fingernail pain, fingernail swelling

Urgency: Phone call or in-person visit

Chronic idiopathic peripheral neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy refers to the feeling of numbness, tingling, and pins-and-needles sensation in the feet. Idiopathic means the cause is not known, and chronic means the condition is ongoing without getting better or worse.

The condition is most often found in people over age 60. Idiopathic neuropathy has no known cause.

Symptoms include uncomfortable numbness and tingling in the feet; difficulty standing or walking due to pain and lack of normal sensitivity; and weakness and cramping in the muscles of the feet and ankles.

Peripheral neuropathy can greatly interfere with quality of life, so a medical provider should be seen in order to treat the symptoms and reduce the discomfort.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination; blood tests to rule out other conditions; and neurologic and muscle studies such as electromyography.

Treatment involves over-the-counter pain relievers; prescription pain relievers to manage more severe pain; physical therapy and safety measures to compensate for loss of sensation in the feet; and therapeutic footwear to help with balance and walking.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: distal numbness, muscle aches, joint stiffness, numbness on both sides of body, loss of muscle mass

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Pain Between The 2nd And 3rd Toe

To diagnose this condition, your doctor would likely ask the following questions:

  • How would you explain the cause of your foot pain?
  • Did you recently injure your foot?
  • Have you ever been told you have flat feet?
  • Have you noticed pain, swelling, temperature, or skin color changes on a part of your body that previously suffered a physical injury?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions

Please take a quiz to find out what might be causing your pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe. These questions are also covered.

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Pain Between The 2nd And 3rd Toe Symptom Checker Statistics

People who have experienced pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe have also experienced:

  • 9% Cracks In Or Between The Toes
  • 8% Foot/Toe Itch
  • 6% Dry Skin

People who have experienced pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe were most often matched with:

  • 33% Morton Neuroma
  • 33% Friction Blister On The Foot
  • 33% Athlete'S Foot (Tinea Pedis)

People who have experienced pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe had symptoms persist for:

  • 32% Over a month
  • 26% Less than a week
  • 22% Less than a day

Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from Buoy Assistant (a.k.a. the quiz).

Pain Between The 2nd And 3rd Toe Symptom Checker

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your pain between the 2nd and 3rd toe