Morton’s Neuroma Foot Pain
By Loren Colon DPM FACFAS
Exercising is an important addition to living a healthy lifestyle. Whether you run on a treadmill or in your neighborhood, there is no reason to limit your activity due to a foot pain. Some aches and pains after running may be normal but if you are having generalized pain or discomfort in the ball of your foot, you may be suffering from a Morton’s Neuroma.
Morton’s Neuroma is a benign enlargement of the third common digital branch of the medial plantar nerve located between the third and fourth metatarsal heads. Although it commonly occurs between the 3rd and 4th toes, it may cause foot pain in between other toes as well.
Morton’s Neuroma is most commonly found in women and is usually described as a localized sharp, dull, cramping or throbbing pain in the ball of the foot. You may also experience burning, tingling and numbness sensation that may radiate up the foot. When walking, many patients complain that it feels like their sock is wrinkled in the area of the foot pain or as if they are walking on a “lump” in their shoe.
Neuroma pain is frequently caused by abnormal function of the foot that usually creates a narrow space between the bones causing squeezing or compression on the nerve. It is greatly aggravated by walking in shoes and relieved by rest.
Diagnosing Morton’s Neuroma from General Foot Pain
If you are experiencing these symptoms, it is recommended to see a podiatrist for a full evaluation. Diagnostic modalities may be performed such as radiographs, ultrasound, and MRI depending on a case by case presentation. When treating foot pain caused by a neuroma, selecting appropriate shoe gear is important. Common treatments include padding, strapping, and custom orthotics that can provide relief by limiting hypermobility or abnormal foot function. Injection therapy with steroid or sclerosing alcohol are effective in relieving symptoms. Most patients resolve with conservative treatments but in chronic foot pain caused by neuromas, surgical excision of the nerve may be needed for relief.
There is no reason to be sitting home with foot pain. If you want to get back on the starting block in no time, please contact your local Atlanta area podiatrist at American Foot and Leg Specialists.