Why You Really Hurt, It All Starts in the Foot by Dr. Burton S. Shuler
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Why You Really Hurt

It All Starts in the foot

by Dr. Burton S. Shuler

A neuroma is a non-cancerous nerve tumor of the foot. Commonly called a Morton's Neuroma, it is a swelling or an inflammation of the nerve. They are most frequently found between one or more of the metatarsal bones (these are the bones on the front part of the foot that the toes attach to) but can form at other locations of the foot including the heel.

Frequently, a neuroma causes a Burning Pain which is localized around the ball of the foot, and this burning sensation may eventually turn to pins and needles or a shooting type pain may travel into the toes (most commonly the 3rd and 4th toes, and the 2nd and 3rd toes) or through the rest of the foot. A neuroma may also cause numbness, tingling or cramping into the toes or feet. These unpleasant sensations generally occurs while the person is walking with shoes on or standing for a period of time; and may improve or even disappear once the shoes are removed and the painful area is massaged. In more severe cases these discomforts can even radiate up the leg.
The leading cause of neuroma is abnormal function of the foot which improperly causes the metatarsal bones to squeeze or choke the nerve, which cause swelling and inflammation of the nerve to occur. The reason for the abnormal foot motion to start with is typically due to Inheritance. Neuromas can also be caused by improper fitting shoes and injury to the nerve.
Non-surgical treatment for neuroma includes, nerve blocks, padding and strappings, and Physical Therapy which decreases the irritation and swelling of the nerve. Orthotics are also a common treatment. They are custom made inserts for your shoes which accomplish the most important therapy -- which is the stabilizing of the metatarsal bones which prevents the choking or irritation of the nerve. Morton's Toe is a common reason for this choking or irritation. At the Ambulatory Foot Clinic we have available many non-surgical treatments for neuroma that give long lasting relief. Surgery should always be a last resort, but if needed it is done right in the comfort and privacy of our clinic, using state of the art minimal traumatic techniques.

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