The 26 Review
- What is Morton’s Neuroma Inflammation or thickening of the nerve(s) between the metatarsal bones
- How Removing part of the damaged nerve in the ball of the foot
- Why To relieve sharp or burning pain in the foot
- Recommended for Patients who are not feeling symptom relief from conservative treatment approaches
- Length of Treatment Less than 1 hour
- Downtime Typically patients recover within 4 to 6 weeks. Swelling can take up to 12 weeks to reduce
Let’s take a closer look…
Morton’s neuroma is the inflammation or thickening of the nerves between the metatarsal bones. The metatarsal bones are located behind the toes. This ailment is commonly found between the third and fourth metatarsal bones of the foot. It is oftentimes caused by the compression of nerves that causes irritation and swelling. Morton’s neuroma can be made worse over time with ill-fitting shoes and/or by wearing high heels often. People with certain foot deformities, such as high arches or flat feet are typically more susceptible to developing this ailment. Some symptoms associated with morton’s neuroma include, sharp pain between the toes, sharp or burning pain while walking or standing, inflammation between the toes, numbness and tingling between the toes, and/or pain and swelling under the balls of the feet. A medical professional will utilize physical examination, X-rays and MRIs to accurately diagnose this condition. Continue reading on to learn more about Morton’s neuroma removal.
Procedure Details: Pre, During & Post Surgery Expectations
Surgery is recommended to patients when conservative treatment approaches are not effectively helping to alleviate pain. Patients with non-diminishing pain should attend a pre-assessment screening to determine if surgery is the right choice, as well as maximizing their benefits during surgery. Before the surgery begins, patients will be administered twilight or general anesthetic, in combination with a postoperative local anesthetic given in the foot to minimize pain. Once the anesthetic has been provided, a small incision will be made between the toes or on the bottom of the foot to remove a portion of the nerve itself. This can result in the area between the toes becoming permanently numb.
Following surgery, patients will be bandaged and given a boot to help protect the foot and ankle. Said bandages should remain on the affected area for at least one week. In some cases, a special orthopedic shoe will be administered to the patient. Seeing as this surgery is an outpatient surgery, it is important to have a plan set in place to get home. In order to fully recover, the foot and ankle will need plenty of rest and physical therapy. Patients should try their hardest to keep as much weight off the foot as possible. Once the first week of recovery has passed, pain levels should reduce greatly. Physical therapists can create personalized recovery plans, depending on the severity of the ailment. Typically recovery takes between 4 to 6 weeks. Depending on a patient’s career, they may be able to return to work after the second week of recovery. Around week 3, patients can return to sporting activities, starting with low impact exercises and sports. Recovery looks different for everyone, so it is important to speak with your podiatrist to determine what it will look like for you.
Benefits and Risk Factors
Like most surgeries there are incredible benefits and risk factors associated. The most obvious benefit of Morton’s neuroma removal surgery is that it gets rid of the problem. Patients that receive this surgery feel pain relief as soon as it’s over and for patients with severe neuroma, surgery may be the only option to return to an active, pain-free lifestyle. The good news about this procedure is that it has a very high success rate. When conservative treatments don’t work, neuroma removal surgery is the next best option. Unfortunately like most surgeries there are a few risk factors to consider, however most problems that arise can be treated quickly and safely. It is important to note that most patients experience few short-term and no long-term ill effects from this surgery. The risk factors associated with this surgery include wound infection, post-operative pain and swelling, and loss of sensation. Early detection and treatment of each of these risk factors greatly reduces the risk for further, more severe complications. If you or someone you know is struggling with this ailment consider speaking with a podiatrist to determine if surgery is the right choice for you.