Is your painful tingling between the toes a cause of a Morton’s neuroma?
A neuroma (often referred to as a mortons neuroma) is a very painful condition involving the thickening of a nerve in your foot. This commonly occurs between the third and fourth long bones in your foot (metatarsals) and can cause a sharp burning or tingling sensation that can radiate into the toes
The exact cause of Morton’s neuroma is not known. It is thought to develop as a result of long-standing (chronic) stress and irritation of a plantar digital nerve. This may be due to the nerve being squashed (compressed), rubbed, or stretched. Some thickening (fibrosis) and swelling may then develop around a part of the nerve. Poor fitting or constrictive footwear can contribute to this condition. The way your joints are aligned in combination with the way you move can also contribute. Overloading of the area due to very flat feet, not “toe-ing off” through the big toe is often a cause of the friction and compression at this area.
A change in footwear will be recommended. Any shoes which compress at the toebox need to be evaluated. Often a small “metatarsal dome” can be adhered to your shoe to offload the area of compression. Sometimes if an obvious foot posture problem is apparent, or the met domes are not enough to reduce the pain, an orthotic device can be made to assist with the condition. Steroid or local anaesthetic injections can be useful. Sometimes dry needling or massage and stretching of surrounding muscles can relieve compression on the nerve and assist in treatment.
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