Morton’s Neuroma is a condition which affects the ball of your foot and normally occurs in between the 3rd and 4th toe. Neuroma are benign growths of the nerve that are caused by the thickening of the soft tissues around the nerve. While harmless on their own, the pressure caused by these growths can irritate and pinch the nerve, causing numbness, irritation or burning pain.
Morton’s Neuroma is usually caused by an irritation or pressure to the nerve. An injury to the nerves may trigger or exacerbate this condition as well.
Some risk factors for Morton’s Neuroma include:
- Prolonged use of high heels
- Footwear that is narrow at the toe box
- High-impact sports involving running and jumping
- Barefoot running
If you suspect you have Morton’s Neuroma, the first step is to ease the pain. Icing the painful area and using painkillers may help to reduce the pain. A change of footwear with a larger toebox will also help by relieving pressure. Avoiding high heels or sports that require tight-fitting shoes (such as skiing) will also help to reduce the pain.
If the pain persists, consult a podiatrist who will be able to assess your condition and the biomechanics of your feet to determine the appropriate treatment.
Conservative therapies such as shockwave therapy (ESWT) and Super Inductive System (SIS) may be able to effectively relieve your pain. If your condition is worsened by pre-existing biomechanical issues such as flat feet, full custom orthotics may be prescribed by a podiatrist to prevent the condition from worsening.
If all conservative options have been exhausted, foot surgery will be the last option to remove the neuroma to provide pain relief.