Sunday, April 14, 2013

Neuroma Secrets

The pain of neuroma may feel like a persistent pain in the ball of the foot that may radiate to the toes. For others it may feel like walking on marbles, standing on a pebble inside the shoe, tingling, or numbness of the toes.
Anyone can be affected by neuroma.
The specific cause of neuroma is not known but there are certain factors that are believed to trigger the condition. Among these are foot problems such as high foot arches, flat feet, hammertoes, atypical positioning of the toes, and bunions. Previous foot injuries, irritation, or pressure to the nerves which lead to the toes can also contribute to neuroma formation. Other causes that may elicit the symptoms are wearing shoes that are too tight, wearing too narrow footwear, or constant use of high-heeled shoes.
High-heeled shoes, particularly those over three inches, pointed at the toes, or shoes with a tight shoe box may squash the toes together, worsening the symptoms. People with flat feet are also more at risk. This is a condition in which almost the entire soles of the feet come into contact with the ground. High arches, on the other hand are more likely to suffer from Morton's neuroma. A hammertoe is a deformity of the proximal interphalangeal joint of the toes, more commonly the second, third, and fourth toes. The toes appear to be permanently bent.
Morton's neuroma is more common in women, the ratio being 4:1. The symptoms are usually felt on one foot and they commonly occur in the fifth decade of life.
Neuroma treatment depends on the extent of the symptoms. Some treatments for neuroma are the use of arch supports, shoe inserts, steroid injections, decompression surgery, or removal of the nerve.
Foot pads or arch supports are worn inside the shoe to help decrease the pressure on the nerve. These may be custom-made or can also be purchased over the counter. The advantage of prescribed shoe inserts are these are molded to fit the exact shape of your feet.
Some individuals benefit from steroid injections into the affected area. Other treatments are cryogenic neuroablation and surgery. This can be decompression surgery to relieve the pressure on the nerve or this may also involve removal of the nerve if the other treatments fail. This type of surgery is often the last resort because it has the risk of causing permanent numbness in the affected toes.
Morton's neuroma is common among dancers, runners, and other athletes but can affect anyone. If you feel that you might be suffering from Morton's neuroma, seek advice from a doctor or surgeon who specializes in foot disorders.

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