If you sometimes feel that you are “walking on a marble,” and you have persistent pain in the ball of your foot, you may have a condition called Morton’s neuroma. A neuroma is a benign tumor of a nerve. Morton’s neuroma is not actually a tumor, but a thickening of the tissue that surrounds the digital nerve leading to the toes.
Symptoms for Morton’s Neuroma
- Normally, there are no outward signs, such as a lump, because this is not really a tumor.
- Burning pain in the ball of the foot that may radiate into the toes.
- The pain generally intensifies with activity or wearing shoes. Night pain is rare.
- There may also be numbness in the toes, or an unpleasant feeling in the toes.
Runners may feel pain as they push off from the starting block. High-heeled shoes, which put the foot in a similar position to the push-off, can also aggravate the condition. Tight, narrow shoes also aggravate this condition by compressing the toe bones and pinching the nerve.
Treatment for Morton’s Neuroma
Treatment will depend on the severity of Morton’s neuroma. Common treatment options include pain medication, anti-inflammatory injection, arch supports, padding and taping of the foot. Wearing well-fitting shoes, avoiding high heels can also help in some extent. Severe cases will require surgery.