Neuroma

Do you have pain in the ball of the foot that feels like being stabbed by a hot poker? Do you have a "funny-bone" feeling in your toes? You may have a Neuroma.

What is a Neuroma?

A neuroma is a pinched nerve in the ball of the foot. The nerve often becomes swollen and enlarged. 

What are the symptoms of a Neuroma?

Symptoms are often described as:

  • Pain in the ball of the foot that radiates toward the toes
  • Numbness in the ball of the foot that radiates toward the toes
  • "balled-up-sock" feeling under the toes
  • "Pebble-in-your-shoe" feeling under the toes
  • Symptoms are most noticed with walking or with twisting motions in the ball of the foot.
  • Side-to-side movements are painful.

How did I get a Neuroma?

Neuromas form most often between the 3rd and 4th metatarsal bones at the branch point of the plantar nerve. This area is an area of much movement which causes friction. This agitates the nerve and over months and years can cause the nerve to swell and become scarred. 

How do you diagnose a Neuroma?

The most reliable diagnosis of a Neuroma comes from a good evaluation of your symptoms and examining your foot.  

X-rays of the foot are helpful in ruling out a metatarsal stress fracture. They can also show the proximity of the metatarsal bones, which can be a contributing factor to neuroma formation. 

Ultrasound and MRI can show the neuroma and Ultrasound can be useful in helping in treatment. 

How do you treat a Neuroma?

Neuroma treatment may include:

  • In-shoe padding
  • Foot orthotics
  • Injections of cortisone or other anti-inflammatory medicines
  • Surgery to remove or decompress the Neuroma