Morton’s neuroma is a condition characterized by thickening and hardening of the nerve cells present in the foot. It mostly affects third or fourth fingers of the foot. It rarely extends to other tissues of the neighboring structures. It is caused by repeated trauma or injury to the foot by use of ill-fitted shoes, high heels or foot abnormalities like a flat foot or high arches. Its symptoms are the pain, swelling, numbness, tingling and burning at the ball of foot radiating to the fingers. It can be managed with medicines, rest and other treatment measures.
Is Surgery For Morton’s Neuroma Successful?
When other modes of treatment fail to relieve the pain of Morton’s neuroma for nine months or more, surgical treatment is recommended. It involves surgical spacing of tissues around the nerve or excision of the entire growth or damaged part of the nerve.
Morton’s Neuroma Procedure
Antidepressant or anti-seizure medicines are given prior to Morton’s neuroma surgery. Local anesthesia is given to block the pain caused by nerves. This is called a nerve block. The neuroma is then removed out and the nerve is positioned deeper into the tissues to avoid direct stimulation. Painkillers and other medicines are given to avoid the pain of surgery after the procedure.
Morton’s Neuroma Surgery Outcome
The success rate of surgery can be 55-85% of the cases of Morton’s neuroma. Most of the patients who have received surgical treatment experience relieve of the symptoms of Morton’s neuroma. It may take 3 to 8 weeks to recover fully from the condition depending upon the type of surgery done and physical therapy followed after the surgery. The major benefit of the surgery is that the pain induced by Morton’s neuroma vanishes.
Risk Or Side Effects Of Surgery
The risk and complication rate of surgery is only 15-20%.75-85 % of cases of this condition improve completely after surgery. However, surgical treatment of Morton’s neuroma can relieve the pain but it leaves a permanent loss of sensation that is numbness in the affected area. There are also chances of the reappearance of the condition even after successful treatment.
The side effects of Morton’s neuroma are-
- Stump neuroma a condition in which neuroma grows in the leftover segment of nerve fibers
- Tenderness of scar
- Hammertoes due to a deviation of toes as an outcome of damage to small tendons and muscles
Morton’s neuroma is a noncancerous condition characterized by the thickening of the nerve fibers. It affects third or fourth toes. It causes swelling and hardening of the nerve fibers.
Symptoms Of Morton’s Neuroma
The person with Morton’s neuroma may have the following symptoms-
- A neuroma is small in size like a small grape
- It causes discomfort in the feet while moving.
- The patient may feel numbness or tingling in the affected area.
- He may also experience a burning sensation.
- It is painful.
- Its pain may radiate to adjacent fingers.
- The neuroma is usually formed in the third or fourth digit of the foot.
- It does not show symptoms of inflammation such as redness, heat or loss of range of motion.
Conservative Treatment For Morton’s Neuroma
- Resting the foot by avoiding excessive exercises or physical activities can improve the condition of Morton’s neuroma.
- Applying ice packs for 10-15 minutes in small intervals in a day can relieve the pain.
- Switching to rightly fitted shoes with shoe pads are helpful in this condition.
- Anti-inflammatory medicines reduce pain and swelling
- Corticosteroid injections are effective in the reduction of pain and swelling of the nerve fibers.
- Foot exercises can increase the strength of the tissues around the nerve fibers, thereby reducing pain and swelling.
Morton’s neuroma is a benign growth of the nerve fibers that cause intense pain. Surgery in Morton’s neuroma is successful in providing relief to the patient in most of the cases as discussed above.