What is tarsal tunnel syndrome?
Your tarsal tunnel is a channel that exists between part of your ankle bone and a group of ligaments that span over your foot. This tunnel carries the nerves, tendons, and arteries that enable you to move your foot. One of the main nerves inside the tarsal tunnel is the tibial nerve, which is responsible for providing feeling to the bottom of your foot. This nerve can become stressed and irritated due to excess pressure, causing the condition known as tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS).
Diseases or injuries that may produce this excess pressure include:
- Flat feet or fallen arches
- Swelling due to ankle injury
- Arthritis and diabetes
- A varicose vein or bone spur
Symptoms of TTS consist of:
- Foot numbness
- Tingling or burning sensation
- A shooting pain
A diagnosis of tarsal tunnel syndrome can be a complicated matter and it is important to consult with a medical professional, such as a podiatrist, to devise the best treatment plan. Your foot doctor will perform a complete clinical exam followed by imaging studies (X-ray, CT or MRI), and electrical testing such as EMG or nerve conduction evaluation may be commissioned to confirm the diagnosis.
Non-surgical treatment options include:
- Steroid injections
- NSAIDS for pain and inflammation
- Braces, splints and orthotic inserts to take pressure off of the nerve
In severe cases, TTS may not respond to conservative measures and will require the intervention of a skilled surgeon to release the pressure on the nerve.
The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle care. Our team of doctors is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631-549-8637) and Briarwood, NY (929-336-4523).