Morton’s Neuroma

Morton’s Neuroma Foot Problems - Mandurah Podiatry

A Morton’s Neuroma is a painful nerve enlargement or irritation of one or more of the nerves between the metatarsals in the forefoot. The nerve that a neuroma most commonly forms within is called the intermetatarsal nerve and is one of the many branches within the foot that have traveled from the spine. A neuroma can occur between any of the long bones (metatarsals) in the forefoot, but is most commonly encountered in the intermetatarsal nerve between the third and fourth metatarsals and toes. Neuromas are benign and often respond to conservative care.

Those with a neuroma describe several different types of sensations. Burning, stinging, stabbing, shooting, tingling, cramping, numbness, fullness and walking on a lump, as if their sock is wadded or bunched up in the front of their shoe. Many will find near immediate relief of symptoms by removing their shoe/shoes. This should be taken as confirmation that one should carefully assess the shoes they wear and their fit.

If you have a flexible foot, an orthotic device will decrease the amount of spreading and motion that your forefoot can undergo. This is one of the reasons why orthotics are prescribed for neuromas. It is extremely important for those with neuromas to understand that by using an orthotic, they will automatically need a larger and often wider sized shoe, because the supportive device will take up some room in the shoe. In this instance, footcare providers should choose the thinnest device possible and possibly not use a full-length device.

If the wider shoe and supportive device do not help with your neuroma, you may seek out a metatarsal pad to be placed on your orthotic device or ask your podiatrist to put one on your orthotic. This pad will spread the metatarsal bones and remove pressure from the nerve where it goes under the ball of the foot. The placement of the metatarsal pad is of utmost importance and is best placed by a podiatrist with experience in the anatomy of the forefoot and the treatment of neuromas.

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