right in the ball of your foot—but when you go to check, there’s nothing there? You might have a Morton’s neuroma.
In a sense, the condition really isn’t that different from standing on an actual pebble. Only instead of a pebble, it’s a mass of thickened tissue surrounding a nerve in your foot—usually between the base of your third and fourth toes. And instead of being inside your shoe, it’s inside your foot.
You probably won’t be able to directly see or even feel a neuroma—there’s no obvious “lump” that you can find when you push on the area with your fingers. But when you put weight on your foot, the neuroma pushes uncomfortably against the nerve.
This can cause a variety of possible sensations—a sharp pain, a radiating burning sensation, tingling, or even numbness.
It isn’t always possible to identify a specific cause for every situation. That said, in a more general sense, neuromas tend to develop as a response to an injury or constant irritation and pressure in and around the nerve tissue.
Risk factors linked with a higher risk of neuromas include:
Our preference is always to treat neuromas conservatively whenever possible. Although the neuroma itself will not decrease in size, conservative options can often slow its progression and help you manage your day to day activities without pain or restriction.
Common approaches may include:
If conservative treatments are not successful, surgery may be necessary. One option is to “decompress” the area surrounding the neuroma by cutting some of the surrounding ligament structures. Another is to remove the affected nerve entirely.
Both options have pros and cons; the answer of what to choose will depend on your specific needs. In either case, surgery is performed out-patient, with a recovery period of a few weeks to a few months.
Whatever your condition, the team at Canyon Foot & Ankle can help you overcome it and help you get back to your active lifestyle! To schedule an appointment, please call the office closest to you: