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Morton Neuroma

Neuroma is a painful condition that affects the ball of your foot. Most commonly the area between your third and fourth toes. It may feel as if you are standing on a pebble in your shoe or on a fold in your sock.

Neuroma occurs when the tissue around a nerve that leads to a toe thickens from irritation or compression. It most often occurs between the third and fourth toes, but can also occur between the second and third toes.

A neuroma is a painful condition, also referred to as a “pinched nerve” or a nerve tumor. It is a benign growth of nerve tissue frequently found between the third and fourth toes. It brings on pain, a burning sensation, tingling, or numbness between the toes and in the ball of the foot.

The symptoms of a neuroma include the following:

  • Pain in the forefoot and between the toes
  • Tingling and numbness in the ball of the foot
  • Swelling between the toes
  • Pain in the ball of the foot when weight is placed on it

Although the exact cause for this condition is unclear, a number of factors can contribute to the formation of a neuroma:

  • Biomechanical deformities, such as a high-arched foot or a flat foot, can lead to the formation of a neuroma. These foot types bring on instability around the toe joints, leading to the development of the condition.
  • Trauma can cause damage to the nerve, resulting in inflammation or swelling of the nerve.
  • Improper footwear that causes the toes to be squeezed together is problematic. Avoid high-heeled shoes higher than two inches. Shoes at this height can increase pressure on the forefoot area.
  • Repeated stress, common to many occupations, can create or aggravate a neuroma.

Some imaging tests are more useful than others in the diagnosis of Morton’s neuroma:

  • X-rays. Your doctor is likely to order X-rays of your foot, to rule out other causes of your pain — such as a stress fracture.
  • Ultrasound. This technology uses sound waves to create real-time images of internal structures. Ultrasound is particularly good at revealing soft tissue abnormalities, such as neuromas.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Using radio waves and a strong magnetic field, an MRI also is good at visualizing soft tissues. But it’s an expensive test and often indicates neuromas in people who have no symptoms.

Conservative treatment starts with using arch supports or foot pads for your shoes. These help relieve the pressure on the affected nerve. Other conservative treatments include:

  • physical therapy
  • 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

However in severe cases it could lead to morton’s neuroma surgery which would require different steps.

One of the easiest ways to prevent recurrence of Morton’s neuroma is to wear the right kind of shoes.

  • Avoid wearing tight shoes or shoes with high heels for long periods of time.
  • Choose shoes that have a wide toe box with plenty of room to wiggle your toes.
  • If the doctor recommends it, wear an orthotic insert to take pressure off the ball of your foot.
  • Wear padded socks, which can help protect your feet if you stand or walk a lot.
  • If you participate in athletics, wear footwear that is padded to protect your feet.
  • If you stand for long periods of time in the kitchen, at a cash register, or at a standing desk, get an anti fatigue mat. These cushioned mats can help provide relief to your feet.
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Doc Martin’s Foot And Ankle Clincs are well known as one of the most technologically advanced foot and ankle practices in Michigan. Our physicians will carefully craft an individualized treatment plan that embraces your specific injury, anatomy, and even lifestyle (a critically important component when it comes to recovery). We never take a “cookie-cutter approach” to treatment.

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Foot And Ankle Experts In Michigan

For our patient’s convenience, we offer foot and ankle treatments for all kinds of conditions such as Neuroma in Adrian, MI, Neuroma in Ann Arbor, MI, and Neuroma in Jackson, MI. We have our own digital x-ray, MRI, Cat-scan, and ultrasound equipment at many of our podiatry clinics. Our on-site podiatric physical therapy clinics allow for constant communication between the physicians and physical therapists, ensuring the most effective therapy and successful recovery for our patients.

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