Painful Lump Over The Foot - It Could Be Bony Spurs

This is a peculiar situation that presents to my clinic from time to time. The patient complains of a painful swelling over the top of the foot. This lump feels bony and can be “unsightly”.

Metatarsal Base Bony Bossing
Metatarsal Base Bony Bossing | HC Chang Orthopaedic Surgery

A possible diagnosis is a ganglion.  This is a fluid-filled sac arising next to the joint or tendon sheath.

However, in this case, the problem is bony bossing of the base of the bone of the foot (metatarsal bone).

A simple x-ray of the foot taken in the “true-lateral” view with clinch the diagnosis.

Tarso-Metatarsal Joint Osteophyte
Tarso-Metatarsal Joint Osteophyte

A zoomed in view:

TMTJ Osteophytic Spurs
TMTJ Osteophytic Spurs

The treatment can be avoiding tight  shoes that presses onto the bony spur or surgically remove the bony spur.

For more information on lumps and bumps of the foot, please contact us at 683 666 36 or email us at

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