The Role of Foot Care Clinics in Diagnosing and Treating Morton’s Neuroma
Throughout the course of any day, people will rely quite heavily on their feet to get them from place to place and back again. Walking, running, cycling, driving, and climbing can all be a part of one’s daily routine, and their feet play an integral role in performing each action, albeit usually in a subconscious manner; said another way, people often go about their business without paying much attention to what their feet are doing at the time.
That is, of course, until they experience some type of foot pain that can discourage them from performing or even attempting such basic activities. Indeed, foot pain can be much more than just an inconvenience; it can be particularly limiting to one’s mobility and can inhibit them from appreciating some of life’s simplest functions and pleasures.
While many people might associate foot pain with a condition known as plantar fasciitis, which often affects the heel and can be excruciatingly painful in its own right, pain in the forefoot can be equally if not more debilitating; one of the specific conditions in this part of the foot is Morton’s Neuroma, characterized by a thickening of the tissues surrounding the nerves leading to the toes.
Morton’s Neuroma most commonly occurs in the area between the third and fourth toes, and it customarily results when the nerves leading to the toes are subjected to repetitive pressure, irritation, or trauma/injury. Some of the common factors that may contribute to Morton’s Neuroma will include:
- High-heeled shoes
- Tight or ill-fitting shoes
- High-impact sports (jogging, running)
- Sports requiring tight footwear (skiing, climbing)
- Deformities of the foot such as high arches or flat feet
Typically, there are no outward signs/indications of this condition i.e. a bump or redness, however, individuals might experience one or more of the following symptoms:
- Tingling or numbness in their toes
- Sharp/burning pain in the ball of the foot
- Sharp/burning pain extending into the toes
- The feeling of having an object in one’s shoe
Consequently, an accurate or formal diagnosis of Morton’s Neuroma will likely begin with an appointment at a Toronto foot care clinic, such as the Scarborough offices of Comfort Stride Foot Care Clinic, for a physical examination by a certified chiropodist; should this exam identify the presence of a mass or tenderness in the ball of the foot, one of the following imaging tests may be scheduled to confirm the finding of Morton’s Neuroma:
- Ultrasound – to reveal any soft tissue abnormalities
- X-rays – to rule out the potential of a stress fracture
- MRI – to assess soft tissues if people are asymptomatic
Individuals who are experiencing some type of forefoot pain should not allow the ailment to persevere beyond a few days. Visiting a professional foot care clinic, like the Comfort Stride Foot Care Clinic in Scarborough, can aid in determining whether the pain is due to Morton’s Neuroma or an alternative issue and thus help establish the appropriate course of action/treatment.
Choice of Treatment for Morton’s Neuroma Based on Severity of the Foot Pain
In the event that a diagnosis of Morton’s Neuroma is confirmed, the method of treatment will depend on the severity of the symptoms. The chiropodist may prefer a conservative approach at the outset, though an invasive procedure may be required at some point in time; the scope of treatment options may include one or more of the following:
- Custom orthotics
- Orthopedic footwear
- Lifestyle modifications
- Corticosteroid injections
- Surgery to ease the pressure
- Surgical removal of the nerve
For additional information on the options/recommendations advocated by the certified chiropodists from Comfort Stride Foot Care Clinic for the treatment of Morton’s Neuroma, please go to our Foot Services page.
If you are experiencing persistent numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your forefoot and/or toes, these can be signs of Morton’s Neuroma. Call the Comfort Stride Foot Care Clinic in Scarborough today at 647-989-7794 to schedule an examination/appointment with one of our certified chiropodists.