Mortons Neuroma Removal

  • Definition

    Mortons neuroma is an inflammation of a nerve in the foot that goes to the toes. Surgical treatment involves removing the area of inflammation and the nerve.
  • Reasons for Procedure

    Mortons neuroma can cause pain and tingling. Mortons neuroma removal is done to lessen these symptoms. After the removal, most patients have good pain relief.
  • Possible Complications

    If you are planning to have this removal, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:
    • Recurrence of pain
    • Numbness in the nearby toes
    • Bleeding
    • Infection
    • Poor wound healing
    Some factors that may increase the risk of complications include:
    • Smoking
    • Poor nutrition
    • Long-term illness
    • Use of certain medications
    • Diabetes
    • Bleeding disorders
  • What to Expect

    Prior to Procedure
    You doctor may do the following:
    • Medical history
    • Physical exam
    • X-ray of the foot
    Anesthesia
    Local or general anesthesia will be used. Local anesthesia will numb the area. With general anesthesia, you will be asleep.
    Description of Procedure
    A small incision will be made on the top of the foot. It will be made between the two toes that are affected by the neuroma. The area of inflammation and the nerve will be located and removed. The incision will then be closed with stitches. A bandage will be applied over the area.
    Nerves of the Foot
    Foot Anatomy Nerve and muscle
    Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
    After Procedure
    The removed tissue will be examined in a lab. The results may take several days.
    How Long Will It Take?
    Often less than one hour
    How Much Will It Hurt?
    Anesthesia prevents pain during the procedure. You may have some pain during recovery. Talk to your doctor about medication to help relieve this pain.
    Average Hospital Stay
    If there were no complications, you may be able to leave the same day.
    Post-procedure Care
    When you return home, do the following to help ensure a smooth recovery:
    • Keep the surgical area clean and dry.
    • Ask your doctor about when it is safe to shower, bathe, or soak in water.
    • Use compression and ice to prevent swelling as directed by your doctor.
    • Keep your foot elevated.
    • Take antibiotics to prevent infection if advised by your doctor
    • Take pain medication as directed by your doctor.
    The stitches are usually removed in the doctor's office 7-10 days after the surgery. You will gradually be able to return to full activities within 3-6 weeks. The small area where the nerve was removed is likely to remain numb.
  • Call Your Doctor

    After you leave the hospital, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:
    • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
    • Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding, or discharge from the incision site
    • Pain that you cannot control with the medications you have been given
    • Recurrence of the symptoms in your foot, or new, unexplained symptoms
    In case of an emergency, call for medical help right away.
  • RESOURCES

    American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons http://www.acfas.org

    American Podiatric Medical Association http://www.apma.org

    CANADIAN RESOURCES

    College of Podiatric Physicians of Alberta http://www.albertapodiatry.com

    Canadian Podiatric Medical Association http://www.podiatrycanada.org

    References

    Morton neuroma. EBSCO Health Library website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/healthLibrary/. Updated July 26, 2013. Accessed August 9, 2013.

    Mortons neuroma. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons' OrthoInfo website. Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00158. Updated September 2012. Accessed August 9, 2013.

    Thomson CE, Gibson JN, Martin D. Interventions for the treatment of Mortons neuroma. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2004;CD003118.

    Revision Information

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