Are You New to Morton's Neuroma? Here's Everything You Need to Know
If you're new to Morton's neuroma, also known as interdigital or intermetatarsal neuroma, then you may be wondering what this condition is and what it means for your health. But don't worry - we're here to help! In this article, we'll walk you through everything you need to know about Morton's neuroma, including what it is, how it's treated, and more.
Everything You Need To Know About Morton's Neuroma
Morton's neuroma, also known as Morton's metatarsalgia, is a common foot condition that occurs when the nerve tissue in the ball of your foot becomes irritated and thickens. This results in pain, burning sensations, and numbness in your toes.
While there is no single cause for Morton's neuroma, it is often the result of wearing ill-fitting shoes or participating in high-impact activities. Women are also more likely to develop Morton's neuroma, due to the higher likelihood of wearing tight or high-heeled shoes.
While Morton's neuroma can be painful, it is important to remember that it is not cancerous and does not lead to any long-term damage. With proper treatment, the majority of people with Morton's neuroma experience relief from their symptoms.
Conservative and home treatments
Conservative treatment starts with using arch supports or foot pads for your shoes. This helps relieve the pressure on the affected nerve. They can be over-the-counter (OTC) inserts or custom-made by prescription to fit your foot. Your doctor may also suggest OTC painkillers or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or aspirin.
Other conservative treatments include:
Stretching exercises to loosen tendons and ligaments
Massaging the ball of your foot
Exercises to strengthen your ankles and toes
Resting your foot
Applying ice to sore areas
If your pain persists, your doctor may try injections of corticosteroids or anti-inflammatory drugs into the area of pain. A local anesthetic injection may also be used to numb the affected nerve. That may help relieve your pain temporarily.
Alcohol sclerosing injections are another remedy that may provide short-term pain relief. A long-term study found that only 29 percent of people who had alcohol injections remained symptom-free, however.
When other treatments have failed to provide relief, your doctor may suggest surgery. Surgical options may include:
Neurectomy, where part of the nerve tissue is removed
Cryogenic surgery, also known as cryogenic neuro ablation, where nerves and the myelin sheath covering them are killed using extremely cold temperatures
Decompression surgery, where pressure on the nerve is relieved by cutting ligaments and other structures around the nerve.
Morton’s Neuroma Diagnosis
To tell if you have Morton’s neuroma, your doctor may only need to ask you about your symptoms and examine your foot. But you may need further tests to make sure.
To diagnose you, your doctor can use:
Your doctor will ask about the pain you’re having, when it started, the kinds of shoes you wear, and your work and other activities.
Your doctor will probably first press on your foot to check for a tender spot. If you feel a sort of click between the toes, that can also be a sign of Morton’s neuroma.
An X-ray might help your doctor rule out other potential problems, such as a fracture.
This test uses sound waves to create images and is a good way to spot Morton’s neuroma and other conditions that involve soft tissue.
Range of motion test
Your doctor will move your foot and toe around to see if the cause of your pain could be arthritis or joint inflammation.
Magnetic resonance imaging uses radio waves and a magnetic field to look at your soft tissues. Doctors don’t usually use MRIs for diagnosing Morton’s neuroma, because it’s an expensive test.
Morton’s Neuroma Treatment and Home Remedies
When you have Morton’s neuroma, your doctor will probably try simple solutions first, such as:
Pads that fit inside your shoe can reduce the pressure on your foot. Drugstores sell some kinds over the counter, which means that you don’t need a prescription. But your doctor may prescribe a custom-made one that has been molded to fit your foot exactly.
A paper cup full of frozen waterworks, as well as a cold roller over the site of your pain.
Your doctor may have you stay off your feet until the symptoms go away. OTC pain medications. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen can reduce swelling and pain.
If you’re overweight and lose some of those extra pounds, that may help, too.
Changing your footwear
High heels or tight shoes can ramp up your symptoms. Stick to shoes with plenty of room for your toes.
A physical therapist can show you exercises to help stretch and strengthen your foot.
Remember, The 3 Arches of Your Feet Still Need Support!
Maybe you have already felt the first symptoms of balance disorders or you want to prevent them from appearing in the first place. Consider getting a foot orthotic device or simply take care of your feet. Start by washing them thoroughly with a gentle soap whenever you take a shower. Being a very complex support system, your feet are your first line of defense against balance-related issues, since their arches provide you with the stability you need in your daily life. It’s time to put your foot down and push back against balance issues. With both feet on the ground, dedicate yourself to keeping them comfortable and healthy. Give us a call and we will scan your feet to make you custom orthotic inserts.
The Shoe Doctor has specialized in providing custom orthotics for 20 years. The right orthotic insoles can greatly reduce foot, knee and hip pain while increasing performance and comfort. Russell at The Shoe Doctor will help educate and assist you in finding the perfect solution for your particular situation. We will create a 3D map of your feet and make custom orthotics for your hiking boots, everyday shoes, and everything else in between. These orthotics, along with our expert advice, will get you using orthotics like a pro, and have you performing at the peak of your abilities in no time! If you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, give The Shoe Doctor a call to get the best custom orthotics in the area! We are here to assist you, schedule your free consultation here!
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