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Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome: Its Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

On the bottom of each of your feet, there is a nerve called the posterior tibial nerve. When that nerve gets compressed, you might feel the tingling and pain associated with tarsal tunnel syndrome.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can come on very quickly, or very slowly, so it's important to be aware of any slight changes you may feel in your feet. If you are in fact suffering from tarsal tunnel syndrome, you will normally feel shooting pain, tingling, burning or numbness along the inside of your ankle or the bottom of your foot. In severe cases, the sensations can extend to other parts of your foot and possibly even up your calf.

Causes of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Anything that compresses the tibial nerve has the possibility of causing tarsal tunnel syndrome. Among the most common causes are is a patient has fallen arches, has flat feet, or is overweight. That constant, repetitive pressure on the tibial nerve can be quite painful.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome is also something that folks with diabetes or arthritis should look out for, because any swelling associated with their disease can cause too much compression within the foot.

Additionally, if you have sprained or injured your ankle or foot in any way that causes swelling, tarsal tunnel syndrome can also occur. This includes if you have any kind of mass in your foot that wouldn't normally be there—varicose veins, tumors, a cyst, bone spurs, and so on. There isn't a lot of extra room in your foot, so those masses are taking up precious space and may eventually cause tarsal tunnel syndrome.

Treatment of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

This is not the type of foot issue that you can just hope will disappear, so it's vital that you make an appointment with your Arizona nerve problem podiatrist. He or she will generally conduct Nerve Conduction Velocities (NCV) testing to see how well your nerves are conducting electricity. This is very helpful in diagnosing tarsal tunnel syndrome and other nerve diseases.

Once your podiatrist has confirmed that you are suffering from tarsal tunnel syndrome, he or she will create a treatment plan to directly tend to your specific needs. Recommendations may include physical therapy, functional orthotics or cortisone injections. If your tarsal tunnel syndrome is especially severe or doesn't respond to treatment, surgery may be recommended to relieve your pain.

If you have tarsal tunnel syndrome, or think that you are suffering from some sort of nerve problem, contact Fixing Feet Institute in Surprise, AZ for an appointment today at 623-584-5556 or by e-mail at [email protected].

Dr. Peyman A. Elison
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Founder and Managing Partner of Fixing Feet Institute