A neuroma can be a nerve that is enlarged, pinched or injured in your foot or ankle. This can lead to symptoms such as numbness, tingling or shooting pain. It often feels like a sock is bunched up in your shoe. It ranges from barely noticeable to not being able to tolerate any shoe gear. Many times, your pain can be resolved with conservative treatment. This can include shoe gear modification, cushions to wear, orthotics and injections. For some, conservative treatment may not get their pain level to where they would like it to be, that’s when surgical options can be discussed.
Nerve entrapment can be very painful! Just about everyone has heard of carpal tunnel but did you know you can also get something called tarsal tunnel? This an area where the nerve gets irritated on the inside of the ankle. There are other nerves around your foot and ankle that can also suffer from nerve entrapment. Often there are reasons why a nerve gets “pinched.” Sometimes it can be due to an injury, the structure or function of your foot and sometimes we cannot always explain the why. Symptoms can be classic symptoms like numbness or tingling and other times it is harder to describe such a achy, sharp, throbbing or shooting. Many times, nerve pain is difficult to recognize. Getting a thorough exam to determine the potential cause and treat the cause with the symptoms is important!
It is not uncommon for a patient with diabetes to experience nerve pain. Unfortunately, the nerves are affected by elevated blood sugars, especially if blood sugars are not well controlled. This can affect the nerve itself, but it can also cause the nerve to have increased pressure when it swells going through various natural tunnels in the lower limb. This can cause numbness in the feet which is what causes a patient to be at risk for ulceration and amputation. That is why it is so important for patients with diabetes to have regular visits with their podiatrist. The earlier potential problems are addressed, there is an improved chance of reducing complications related to diabetes. It is important to control your blood sugars, check your feet everyday and make sure you are wearing proper shoe gear. If you suffer from nerve pain, get the evaluation with Dr. Nelson to see if there are other options for your neuropathy pain.