If you experience pain in the ball of your foot, particularly between the third and fourth toes, you may have Morton’s Neuroma. This condition may be very painful but can be treated by an experienced podiatrist in West Jordan.
The sooner you see a foot and ankle specialist and receive a diagnosis, the sooner you can get comprehensive treatment for your foot pain.
Morton’s Neuroma is a condition caused by thickened tissue around one of the nerves in the foot. This thickening puts pressure on the nerve, causing inflammation and many of the symptoms of nerve dysfunction. These include:
Some of these symptoms overlap with other foot conditions, so it’s essential to seek the help of a foot and ankle specialist who can diagnose and treat Morton’s Neuroma and other foot and ankle issues.
If you don’t have Morton’s Neuroma, we can also assist you with other foot difficulties.
In some cases, yes. Even if it can’t be cured, your foot and ankle specialist can help you relieve the symptoms.
First, your foot doctor will carefully examine your foot, and then they will probably order tests, including X-rays, ultrasounds, and other imaging. After the podiatrist has diagnosed Morton’s Neuroma, they will generate a personalized treatment plan to help you reduce your pain.
Here are some potential treatment options:
Often one of the first treatment options your doctor will try is addressing your shoes. They may ask to see the shoes you wear most frequently or inquire about what shoes you wear in different circumstances.
Your doctor may recommend trying a different shoe style if you generally wear high heels. If these are necessary for your work, you might try a larger size or a high heel with a rounded toebox that allows more room for your toes.
Cushions or shoe inserts may also be added to provide support where you need it and reduce stress on the affected area. This is especially helpful if a foot deformity like fallen arches has contributed to the problem.
Sometimes, your foot doctor may prescribe custom orthotics, which are shoe inserts made from molds and scans of your feet. These inserts replace the insoles in your existing shoes, although your doctor may recommend both new shoes and custom orthotics for best results.
If you’re an athlete struggling with Morton’s Neuroma, your podiatrist might also suggest new shoes or orthotics to relieve pressure in some regions of the foot.
They may discuss ways to find a shoe that is snug enough to provide the support needed for your sport without compressing the nerve. When necessary, the foot doctor can also send you to a local store to help you find a shoe that meets your needs.
Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation are sometimes helpful in mild cases of Morton’s Neuroma. The podiatrist may ask you to stay off your foot as much as possible for a few days or weeks, and they might recommend using bandage tape for compression.
Anti-inflammatory medications like aspirin or ibuprofen can help relieve pain while you address the cause or causes of nerve compression in the foot.
These may be used in more advanced cases where anti-inflammatory medicine, RICE, and shoe adjustments haven’t provided enough relief.
In these cases, your foot and ankle specialist can inject the painful area with cortisone, a steroid that is very effective at reducing inflammation, swelling, and associated pain. However, steroids are not without risks, and this treatment can’t be used often.
Your doctor will probably recommend other therapies to be used concurrently.
Another option is an alcohol injection intended to deaden the nerve, offering relief.
Many cases of Morton’s Neuroma can be successfully treated with one of the above options, and your doctor will most likely try these before recommending surgery. But surgery may be a good solution in some situations where more conservative treatments have failed.
There are two main options for surgery:
Surgery can be done by making a small incision on the top or bottom of the foot. Your foot surgeon will decide the specific course of treatment based on the location and cause of your Morton’s Neuroma and will explain the procedure in detail beforehand.
Understandably, many patients are apprehensive about the idea of surgery. Still, studies have demonstrated that it has an 80-95 percent success rate and is one of the most reliable treatment options available.
Following surgery, you will be given a stiff-soled or post-op shoe. You can walk in this shoe, but if the incision were on the bottom of your foot, the doctor would probably advise you to put your weight on your heel to avoid aggravating it.
Most patients are allowed to return to everyday footwear after about four weeks. However, you should still follow any advice your doctor has given you about wearing comfortable shoes.
The podiatrist will also recommend avoiding high-impact activities like running or jumping for a few weeks and may tell you not to put your foot underwater.
All surgeries carry risks, and while most patients are pleased with the results, a small percentage of people experience permanent numbness or tingling in the toes.
Other potential risks include infection or excessive bleeding, and your podiatrist will advise you on ways to reduce the likelihood of these occurring.
Like other types of nerve damage, Morton’s Neuroma can be caused by anything that injures or compresses the nerve. Some risk factors include:
Activities like snow skiing and rock climbing can also trigger Morton’s Neuroma because the shoes worn for these sports are typically tight.
No. The name is sometimes confusing because a neuroma is a benign tumor that grows on nerve cells.
However, in this case, “neuroma” refers to a layer of thickened tissue pressing on the nerve, and there is no tumor.
If you have been diagnosed with Morton’s Neuroma or have foot pain or other symptoms, you need the assistance of an experienced podiatrist in the local area.
Dr. Elizabeth Auger, DPM, in West Jordan, has been practicing podiatry for over 24 years. A graduate of Temple University in Philadelphia, Dr. Auger moved to Salt Lake City and completed her residency with intensive foot surgery and wound care training.
Fond of the scenery and Utah lifestyle, she began private practice in the West Jordan area and has been helping patients with foot and ankle issues ever since.
A College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons member, Dr. Auger is Board Certified in Podiatric Medicine by The American Board of Lower Extremity Surgery.
Her goal is to “keep people moving,” and she has treated various foot and ankle conditions, including many cases of Morton’s Neuroma.
Please contact our friendly administrative staff at 801-845-3960 for assistance scheduling an appointment or inquiring about insurance coverage. We’re often able to set you up with a same-day appointment.
Once you’re here, we’ll take a thorough medical history, and then the doctor will perform an exam and order imaging tests as needed. After a diagnosis is made, you’ll receive a customized treatment plan to get you back on your feet.