Taking Care of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
Spring Training starts in a few weeks and—like any good baseball player knows—it’s important to take care of your heel pain. If you have pain or discomfort in your feet, you can’t play baseball. Plus, this discomfort makes it difficult to do your daily tasks as well. Tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS) is one cause of heel pain that can be treated at home with conservative methods. However, if you wait too long it may become worse and you may end up needing surgery.
TTS occurs when the tibial nerve branches on the bottom of the foot get pinched. You might experience shooting pain, numbness, burning, tingling or cramping in your foot or calf. This condition usually doesn’t develop on its own. TTS is most commonly caused by a combination of foot deformity, injury, wearing the wrong shoes or other health conditions. For example, you may have flat arches, which leads to more pressure being put on the nerve. Other people find that that they develop TTS as a result of complications with their diabetes or arthritis. You may have sprained your ankle, which leads to swelling and then pressure on the tibial nerve.
Part of treating TTS is treating the underlying cause first. This ensures that the problem doesn’t occur over and over. The first step to treatment is wearing proper shoes and arch supports. An orthotic may help align your foot to take pressure off the pinched nerves. In severe cases an orthotic may make it hurt worse because it puts too much pressure on the pinched nerve. You can elevate your foot and apply ice at the same time if you have any swelling. Putting a heating pad on the inside of your ankle may also help increase circulation to the pinched nerve and relieve pain. Try moving your foot in circles and curling your toes up and down to keep the nerves moving. You may also benefit from physical therapy. In some cases you may need to undergo surgery to free up the nerves or fix the underlying cause. Dr. Peyman Elison specializes in diagnosing and treating TTS and other nerve conditions. With our help, you can choose the best plan for you.
Call Dr. Peyman Elison at (623) 584-5556 with any questions about treatment for TTS. At Fixing Feet Institute in Surprise, AZ, we are here to answer all of your questions.
Photo credit: Now and Zen Photography via freedigitalphotos.net
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