Fat mass is a predictor of incident foot pain Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVE: Foot pain is a common complaint in adults. Increased BMI and fat mass have been linked only to foot pain prevalence. Therefore, a longitudinal study to examine the relationship between body composition and incident foot pain over 3 years was conducted. DESIGN AND METHODS: Sixty-one community dwelling participants from a previous study of musculoskeletal health, who did not have foot pain at study inception in 2008, were invited to take part in this follow-up study in 2011. Current foot pain was determined using the Manchester Foot Pain and Disability Index, and body composition was measured using dual X-ray absorptiometry at study baseline. RESULTS: Of the 51 respondents (84% response rate, 37 females and 14 males), there were 11 who developed foot pain. BMI ranged from underweight to morbidly obese (17-44 kg/m2), mean 27.0 ± 6.0 kg/m2. Incident foot pain was positively associated with both fat mass (odds ratio [OR] 1.11, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.03-1.20) and fat-mass index (OR 1.28, 95% CI 1.04-1.57) in multivariate analysis. CONCLUSIONS: Fat mass is a predictor of incident foot pain. This study supports the notion that incident foot pain in overweight individuals is associated with fat mass rather than body mass alone.


  • Butterworth, PA
  • Urquhart, DM
  • Cicuttini, FM
  • Menz, HB
  • Strauss, BJ
  • Proietto, J
  • Dixon, JB
  • Jones, G
  • Landorf, KB
  • Wluka, AE

publication date

  • June 2013