Inflammation or damage to a joint capsule and surrounding tissue


Capsulitis is caused by unnatural or unusual foot mechanics that place excessive load weight-bearing on the ball of your foot beneath your affected toe joint. Certain factors may increase your likelihood of developing this problematic condition, including:

  • Imbalance between the muscles on top of and below your feet (extensors and flexors)
  • Regular use of footwear with an elevated heel and/or toe-spring
  • Additional foot deformity, like a bunion
  • An unstable foot arch
  • Tight calf muscles on your involved side

Signs and Symptoms

Several distinct signs and symptoms commonly develop in people who have capsulitis, including:

  • Pain and inflammation, commonly located at the base of the 2nd toe
  • Redness of the skin overlying your affected joint
  • The sensation that you are walking on a stone
  • Nerve sensations like burning, stinging or numbness


Capsulitis often responds to conservative, non-surgical treatments. Best treated in its early stages to help improve your affected joint’s stability, reduce your pain and other symptoms, and resolve the root cause of your problem. Common treatment strategies for this health problem include:

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