Finite element analysis on relationship between wearing high-heeled shoes and stresses in intermetatarsal region of foot

Jia Jun Zhou, Hong Tao Zhang, Zong Ping Luo, Ming Zhang, Jia Yu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


All right reserved. To study stress changes in forefoot intermetatarsal region when wearing high-heeled shoes, so as to provide references for quantitative analysis on inducement mechanism of intermetatarsal neuroma and corresponding treatment strategy. Based on the validated foot-ankle-shoe finite element platform, changes of stress levels and tendency in intermetatarsal region were analyzed for both in balanced standing when wearing 0-3 inch (0, 2.54, 5.08, 7.62 cm) high-heeled shoes and walking when wearing 5.08 cm high-heeled shoes in a gait cycle. With the increase of heel height, the stresses in intermetatarsal region were significantly increased, and the stress in the third web space of toes when wearing 7.62 cm high-heeled shoes reached 312% of that when wearing flat shoes (0 cm high-heeled shoes). When walking with 5.08 cm high-heeled shoes, the third web space of toes at push-off instance had the largest stress, reaching 90 kPa, which agreed with the most commonly pathogenic site of intermetatarsal neuroma in clinic. Wearing high-heeled shoes can obviously increase the stress in intermetatarsal region. Squeezing by upper extrusion of shoes can result in the largest stresses in the third web space of toes region, which is most likely to cause the development of intermetatarsal neuroma.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)506-509
Number of pages4
JournalYiyong Shengwu Lixue/Journal of Medical Biomechanics
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015


  • Finite element analysis
  • Foot ankle
  • High-heeled shoes
  • Intermetatarsal neuroma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering

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