Tarsal tunnel syndrome is a condition causing nerve compression that affects the feet. It is similar to the more widely known carpal tunnel syndrome that affects the wrists and hands. The posterior tibial nerve is located in the tarsal tunnel which is located on the inside of the ankle bone. The many tendons nerves, veins, and arteries in this tunnel area are protected by a thick ligament and by the tissues and surrounding bone structure. When the posterior tibial nerve is irritated, it causes considerable pain and discomfort.
Tarsal tunnel nerve compression can occur in a variety of ways:
- Systemic diseases—Inflammatory diseases like arthritis and diabetes can create swelling and pressure in the tarsal tunnel that impinges on the nerve. Be sure to get the help of your foot care professional for the proper diagnosis and to ensure the most efficacious treatment.
- Gait abnormalities—If you roll your ankles outward when you walk, a condition called overpronation, the strain on your arches can increase pressure on the tunnel and on the posterior tibial nerve. Overpronation can be easily treated with custom orthotic inserts.
- Ganglion cyst—There are many structures that can push their way in and press on the posterior tibial nerve including bone spurs and ganglion cysts.
- Ankle sprain—Twisting your ankle creates trauma to the area and may instigate a tarsal tunnel nerve compression. Immediate treatment and intervention by your foot care professional can help avoid any lasting damage.
If you are experiencing symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome, see your foot doctor for the proper diagnosis and treatment. The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. 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 (718)-657-8921.