The cuboid is a small cube shaped bone on the outside of the foot about the middle of the foot. The bone is a little bigger than a typical gaming dice. The bone takes part in 3 joints and operates as a pulley for the tendon of the peroneus longus muscle to pass around. As this is a strong muscle it may move the cuboid bone excessively if it is not secure and strain those joints that the bone is a part of resulting in a condition known as cuboid syndrome. This is most likely one of the more frequent reasons for pain on the outside of the foot, particularly in athletes. The discomfort usually begins quite minor and is located about where the cuboid bone is on the outside of the foot. The discomfort is only at first present during exercise. If the activity amounts are not lessened the problem will usually progress and then be present after activity in addition to during. Sometimes the pain can radiate down into the foot. Even though this is the most frequent cause of pain on the lateral side of the foot, there are others such as tendinopathy and nerve impingements.
The main treatment for Cuboid Syndrome is pain relief. This is commonly done with a reduction in exercise levels and the using of taping to immobilise and support the cuboid. Mobilisation and manipulation is usually used to help the symptoms. Over the long run foot orthotics may be needed to control the movement and support the lateral arch of the foot. This helps make the cuboid more stable so it is an efficient fulcrum or pulley for the tendon to function under. Normally this approach works in the majority of cases. If it doesn’t there are no operative or more advanced approaches and a further lowering of exercise amounts is often the only solution.