Know More About Neuromas

A "pinched nerve" or nerve tumor is known by the medical community as a neuroma. It's a pain-filled disease that starts off as a benign nerve tissue outgrowth. It's typically found between the fourth and third toes. It becomes painful enough to bring a numb, tingling, or burning sensation in the ball of your foot and the toes if it develops worse or grows big enough.

This painful sickness stemming from an otherwise benign nerve growth has a primary, signature symptom: If you're working, you'll feel pain between your toes. If you're a neuroma patient, you'll find relief by stopping your walk, removing your shoe, and massaging the area affected by the neuroma. It's like having a stone inside your shoe, except there is no stone. Most neuroma victims are women.

Neuroma Causes

The formation of a neuroma might happen due to a number of factors (although an exact cause for the condition has not been found yet):

  • If you have a flat foot or a high-arched foot (in other words, biomechanical foot deformities), this can lead to neuroma formation. These deformed feet can bring upon toe joint instability, which should then lead to the development of the issue.
  • If your nerves are damaged due to trauma, they might swell or be inflamed altogether.
  • If you're wearing improper footwear that causes your toes to be squeezed in tight (like high heels or narrow-toed shoes), then you're likelier to develop neuroma.
  • Shoes that are higher than two inches or can cause repeated stress should be avoided, because they could aggravate an existing neuroma.

Neuroma Symptoms

Here are the common symptoms of a neuroma:

  • Agony in between the toes and the forefoot
  • The balls of your feet suffering from numbness or tingling
  • If your toes have swelling in between them
  • When weight on the balls of your feet causes you pain

Neuroma Treatment at Home

Here are the things you can do to experience neuroma relief.

  • Give your toes plenty of room to move when it comes to shoes. Get also low-heeled shoes with laces and buckles that you can adjust to ensure that your shoes don't feel too tight.
  • Having insoles and soles on your shoes that are thick and shock-absorbent is also a good idea because they ensure that foot pressure is kept at a minimum.
  • If you want to wear high heels, then don't get anything beyond the two-inchers. Three-inch and beyond shoes will put severe underfoot strain, after all.
  • Alleviate neuroma pain temporarily with foot massages on the affected area and resting your foot a lot.
  • You can also improve comfort and dull the pain with an ice pack.
  • OTC shoe pads can relieve the affected area's pain and pressure as well.

When Should You Go to a Podiatrist?

Medical care with a podiatrist must be immediate. As soon as you're feeling discomfort and pain, you should seek medical help, because neuromas tend to get worse if left untreated altogether.

Diagnosing and Treating Neuromas

Depending on how severe your neuroma is, your treatment options will vary on a case-to-case basis. Neuroma identification early on is needed in order to avoid having to undergo more expensive treatments, like surgical correction.

Early Treatment Regimen

You can use early treatment for underdeveloped or simple neuromas. A wide toe box and thick soles on your shoes can be adequate enough to relieve the pain of a neuroma. Your condition should diminish by itself now that it's not being aggravated. If the condition is more severe, then surgery or at least extra treatment is called for to get rid of the tumor.

An early treatment regimen's primary focus is pressure relief on areas affected by a developing neuroma. Your podiatrist will analyze and likely x-ray your neuroma in order to suggest a treatment plan that best deals with your individual (and unique) circumstances.

Padding and Taping

By getting special padding on the balls of your feet, you might be able to relieve neuroma symptoms and change any abnormal foot functions that caused the tumor to develop in the first place.


Drugs that fight against swelling as well as cortisone injections prescribed by your podiatrist can ease inflammation and acute pain caused by a neuroma.


If you want to control foot function and not worsen your neuroma pain, it's suggested that you go the orthotics route. You can get custom shoe inserts to prevent aggravating the situation and significantly reduce pain.

Surgical Options

When all else fails, you might need to remove the tumor altogether, especially if your pain goes past the threshold of tolerance. Podiatric surgery is called for whenever you can't take your suffering anymore, and it involves removing the inflamed, enlarged nerve. This is an outpatient procedure with a few weeks required for recovery time.

Your physician will summarize to you in detail what is entailed when undergoing this type of surgery as well as its possible results if it were to go on successfully, without a hitch. Any pain you might feel after surgery can be managed by podiatrist-prescribed medications.

Preventing Neuromas

It's still a mystery why neuromas are caused, but here are the ways to prevent them nonetheless:

  • Have enough room on your exercise shoes, especially on the toe box or the front shoe part to ensure no excessive compression happens on your toes.
  • The balls of your feet should have shoes with adequate cushions or shock-absorbent padding.
  • Do not wear shoes with narrow toe boxes for an extensive period of time, especially if they have heel higher than two inches off the ground.

Dr. Arshia Roohian is currently serving cities including Laguna Woods, Irvine, Rancho Santa Margarita, Mission Viejo, Laguna Hills, and Lake Forest. She offers expert and professional podiatric services including neuroma treatment. She performs various neuroma treatment procedures on a daily basis, so you can make appointment online and in real-time.

The information contained above is intended for general reference purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice or a medical exam. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before starting any new treatment. Health information on this website MUST NOT be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease without the supervision of your doctor.