Overview

Morton’s Neuroma is a painful condition affecting the ball of the foot where the tissue tightens around some of the nerves leading to the toe, resulting in the nerve becoming swollen and irritated. It occurs most often in the area between the third and fourth toe, although it occasionally impacts the area between the second and third toe. Morton’s Neuroma is more common in women.

Approximately 75% of people with Morton’s Neuroma make a full recovery with appropriate care.

Causes

Morton’s Neuroma is most often caused by the toes being squeezed together too often and for too long through activities such as wearing high heels or tight shoes. Other contributing factors to Morton’s Neuroma are:

  • Being overweight.
  • The ageing process that can weaken the pads that protect the feet.
  • High impact exercises on hard surfaces that force the feet to absorb more impact from movement than they should.
  • Abnormal foot movements used to ease the symptoms of bunions, hammertoes and flatfeet.
  • Having a stiff ankle or achilles tendon.

Symptoms

The main symptom experienced by people with Morton’s Neuroma is a clicking feeling in the forefoot, followed by a sharp and burning pain or sensation of pins, numbness or needles extending to the end of their toes.

These symptoms typically become worse over time, and can be heightened by wearing narrow fitting shoes or extended periods of standing or walking. People with Morton’s Neuroma may limp from the pain or feel forced to stop walking altogether.

Diagnosis

A podiatrist can diagnose a case of Morton’s Neuroma by examining patient history and investigating your symptoms. Your feet will also be examined and you may be encouraged to perform certain movements to help your podiatrist assess your foot alignment and function.

An ultrasound or MRI scans are sometimes required to firmly establish the cause of the pain.

Treatment

It is imperative to treat this condition immediately as the pain can spread to the rest of the foot and legs, eventually impacting a person’s ability to move freely.

Dan Everson Podiatry will recommend a treatment option based on the nature and severity of your condition. This may include:

  • Changing footwear
  • Rest and modifying your lifestyle to avoid unnecessary pressure on the feet while the area heals. This can involve avoiding high impact exercises.
  • Applying ice to the affected area for 15 minutes two or three times a day.
  • Massaging the area.
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Kinetic Orthotics are recommended by Dan Everson Podiatry to ensure correct movement of the metatarsal bones and reduce compression on the nerves.

Prevention

Dan Everson Podiatry recommends the following activities to help prevent Morton’s Neuroma.

  • Wearing appropriate footwear
  • Warming up thoroughly before intense exercise.
  • Stretching and strengthening the feet through exercises prescribed by your podiatrist.
  • Ensure your weight sits within a healthy range to avoid stress on the feet.
  • Avoid lacing the forefoot part of your shoes too tightly.

Get relief for your
Foot and Ankle Pain
Book an assessment today