Are you experiencing any numbness in your heel or in other areas of the foot? You may be suffering from a condition called Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome.
The tarsal tunnel houses nerves and links part of the ankle bone to a set of ligaments in the foot.
When one of those nerves inside the tarsal tunnel, the tibial nerve, becomes compressed, you may feel numbness on the bottom of your foot. Symptoms may also include shooting pain and tingling sensations.
What should you do if you suspect you have Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome? Keep reading!
(image by FootVitals.com)
Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome can happen at any age, and there are several factors that can contribute to it. For example, arthritis can cause swelling, which can result in the tibial nerve becoming compressed in the foot.
A swollen tendon, a heel spur, a ganglion cyst or a varicose vein can also contribute to nerve compression. Fallen arches or flat feet, an irregular walk, high-impact sports, an injury to the ankle bone (such as a sprain) can cause compression of the tibial nerve.
If you are experiencing prolonged numbness in one or both heels, then you need to see a foot and ankle doctor as soon as you can.
Normally conservative, non-invasive treatment methods should be used to resolve the causes and symptoms of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome. These methods may include:
- Resting the foot from activities that put pressure on the tarsal tunnel
- Icing the foot to reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief from symptoms
- Anti-inflammatory medications and steroid injections by a foot and ankle doctor
- Orthotics, such as braces, splints or inserts, at the recommendation of a foot and ankle doctor
If none of those non-surgical options relieve your heel numbness and pain, then your foot and ankle doctor may suggest tarsal tunnel release surgery.
In this type of surgery, a doctor makes a small incision behind the inner ankle bone, opens the tarsal tunnel and releases the tibial nerve from the compression. Before undergoing surgery of any kind, please discuss the risks and benefits with your foot and ankle doctor.
If you have foot pain that is persistent and won’t go away, do not let it go untreated or it could very well get worse. Get your foot looked at today so that tomorrow is pain-free.
Please call 626-447-2184 (Arcadia) or 818-408-2800 (San Fernando) to speak make an appointment with Dr. Alireza Khosroabadi about your foot and/or ankle needs.