The term Morton’s neuroma is used to describe a painful condition involving the nerve between the metatarsal bones of the foot. In most patients, the ball of the foot becomes painful. The use of the term “neuroma” to describe this condition is often misleading and can result in sub-optimal courses of treatment. In the majority of cases, what is commonly referred to as “Morton’s Neuroma” is in fact a compression neuropathy of the common plantar digital nerve.
US Neuropathy Centers physicians are committed to determining a correct diagnosis for every patient we treat. We currently have locations in Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming, serving patients across the country. US Neuropathy Centers offers the best treatments and management strategies for peripheral neuropathy and other foot complications.
A neuroma is a response to a true nerve injury that causes the nerve to become inflamed and develop additional mass. Treatment for neuroma generally involves some form of nerve destructive procedure. Morton’s neuroma can develop as a result of failed treatment to correct what is in fact an entrapment neuropathy. Compression or entrapment neuropathies can often be treated without damage to the nerve
Morton’s entrapment is a complicated condition. With Morton’s entrapment, the nerve becomes compressed from forefoot plantar pressure during gait. As physicians and researchers, we know that footwear is definitely a factor in some foot problems. High heels and pointed toe shoes often put immense pressure of the balls of the feet and squeeze the toes together. Women are up to 10 times more likely to develop this condition than men, which is often attributed to footwear..
Genetics may also play a part in the development of this nerve problem. People born with high arches, flat feet, or manipulated toe positions are more prone to Morton’s entrapment. Unstable toe joints promote bunions and hammer toes, for example, to develop, which are often associated with Morton’s entrapment.
The symptoms often associated with Morton’s entrapment include:
- Sharp stinging pain between toes
- Burning sensation
- Radiating pain to the adjacent toes
- Tingling and numbness
- Pain in the ball of the foot
Treatment for the condition varies depending on severity. Some self-treatments may involve the purchasing of new, supportive shoes. Other shoe accommodations patients can make include:
- Eliminating tight or pointed toe shoes
- Eliminating high heels over 2 inches
- Using shoe pads to relieve pressure
- Applying of ice to reduce pain and swelling
- Resting and massage
Off-loading, or techniques to remove pressure to the affected area, can also be helpful.
If these treatments have little effect on the improvement of your Morton’s entrapment, surgical intervention may be necessary. As with any peripheral nerve entrapment, interventions that reduce the compression on the nerve have the best chance of success. In cases of a true Morton’s neuroma, or when less invasive procedures fail to adequately reduce symptoms, radiofrequency ablation or a neurectomy, a procedure to remove nerve tissue, may be performed.
If you believe you suffer from Morton’s neuroma/entrapment and have nerve pain, contact a US Neuropathy Centers specialist today. Find out more information on treatment options, or if you are a good candidate for surgery, by scheduling an appointment for an immediate evaluation.
If you are suffering from neuropathy, please do not hesitate to call us at any of our US Neuropathy Centers locations. With offices in Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming, our neuropathy experts are easily accessible and here to help.
The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.
@US Neuropathy Centers, 2018