If you experience a sharp pain in the ball of your foot when you first get up in the morning and feel like there is a hard object under your foot that causes persistent pain while walking during the day, you most likely have Morton’s Neuroma, a benign growth that affects the nerves of the feet. It consists of an excessive thickening of tissue surrounding the digital nerve that leads to the toe. It most commonly appears between the 3rd and 4th toes where the nerve passes under a ligament that connects the toe bones in the forefoot. It usually develops where there is irritation, excessive pressure or trauma to the foot and is 8 to 10 times more prevalent in women than men.
The Symptoms Of Morton’s Neuroma
There are normally no outward signs of the neuroma, however it causes burning pain that radiates from the ball of the foot to the toes and usually intensifies during activity or when wearing shoes. Numbness or an unpleasant sensation may also be present but pain during the night is rare. Sprinters with Morton’s Neuroma experience pain when they push off from a starting block and high heeled shoes, which places the foot in a position similar to a push-off, can also aggravate and intensify the condition. Narrow shoes that are too tight will compress the toe bones and may pinch the nerve, aggravating the condition further. Although the words “growth” or “tumour” could conjure up images of possible cancer, the condition is common and treatable and does not indicate serious foot pathology.
Diagnosis of Morton’s Neuroma
If you have experienced foot pain for longer than a month that is so severe that it causes difficulty walking, running or normal functioning, you should consult a professional or visit a neuroma treatment clinic. Morton’s Neuroma symptoms often create a vicious cycle that can affect your posture and activity level as well as your mood. When movement becomes painful routine activity and exercise are severely curtailed. Avoiding weight bearing on the affected foot can lead to weakening of the supporting muscles in the foot and ankle causing poor posture and additional foot problems.
A physical examination by a physician will reveal a palpable mass or a clicking sound. By placing pressure between the toe bones the physician will endeavor to replicate the pain and also look for evidence of stress fractures or calluses that may be the cause of the pain. Joint inflammation or arthritis can be detected by range of motion tests and X-rays can determine whether there may be a stress fracture in the toes that cause pain.
Morton’s Neuroma Alternative Treatment
- At The Center for Morton’s Neuroma https://www.mortonsneuroma.com we specialize in the treatment of Morton’s Neuroma by using non-surgical procedures based on your particular condition. We will develop a customized treatment plan ranging from physical therapy and medication to guided ablation procedures, only using surgery as a last resort when absolutely necessary. Initial therapies are simple and involve some of the following treatments:
- Appropriate footwear – wider shoes with low heels and soft soles will enable the bones of the foot to spread out, reducing pressure on the nerves and allowing the foot to heal.
- Orthoses – customized shoe pads and inserts will help lift and separate the bones of the toes thereby helping to relieve irritation and reduce pressure on the nerves of the metatarsals.
- Injections – Corticosteroid injections can help reduce inflammation and swelling of the tissues that surround the nerve and bring relief from pain.
Several studies have proven that a combination of the above conservative treatments have provided relief in over 80% of neuroma symptoms. At The Center for Morton’s Neuroma you can rely on our dedicated team of professionals with more than 20 years professional experience to work with you on developing a treatment protocol to successfully eradicate the symptoms of Morton’s Neuroma.
If Morton’s Neuroma alternative treatment to surgery does not relieve symptoms, you may have to discuss surgical options with your orthopaedic surgeon to release the tissue surrounding the nerve or resect a small portion of the affected nerve.