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Non-Surgical Treatment of Neuromas?

Posted by Lynn B on 1/28/04 at 15:52 (143095)

Has anyone had any successful experience with non-surgical treatment of neuromas? I had neuroma surgery on both feet about six years ago. I'm now having similar pain in one foot, which an MRI shows to be due to a stump neuroma, recurring neuroma or possibly, scar tissue. I've tried injections, orthotics and a variety of topical products. I'm getting a second opinion soon, but am VERY hesitant to have another surgery, as I don't feel that my feet ever healed correctly from the first one. Plus, the neuroma is just one of many foot problems I'm currently experiencing.

So, any non-surgical ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Re: Non-Surgical Treatment of Neuromas?

Dr. Z on 1/28/04 at 21:33 (143136)

This is a difficult problem. What other foot problems are you having?. Have you tried alchol injections for this problem.? There is alot of information about this treatment on the search engines

Re: Non-Surgical Treatment of Neuromas?

Kathy G on 1/29/04 at 16:50 (143198)


I'm sorry you are having pain despite having had surgery. Here's my neuroma experience. I go to a POD who has a very good reputation and I have the utmost trust in him. He considers my neuroma to be an 'atypical neuroma' because of where it is located and the way I responded (or didn't respond) to treatment. Because of that, he won't do surgery on it. He conferred with his partner, another well-respected doctor, and he concurred.

At first, he tried anti-inflammatories and OTC inserts. These were a kind of hard blue foam rubber and they were only half soles. When the pain didn't subside very much, he gave me a cortisone injection. If I look around, I may have the calendars that mark when I got the injections but I know that the first one was about six months after I went to him. That was nine years ago. That first injection was very effective and the relief lasted for about six months. Then he did another. I want to say I had four or five injections in all, over a span of five years. Finally, the cortisone didn't do the trick. That's when I broke down and got custom orthotics made. Had I been less stubborn, I would have gotten them years earlier, when he suggested I do so. I was so afraid I wouldn't wear them. Was I wrong! They have relieved the pain in the neuroma so much, it's unbelievable. It occasionally acts up but it's minimal and usually due to my moving my foot the wrong way.

I do have PF as well but that didn't start until shortly before I got the orthotics. I often wonder if I hadn't been so stubborn and gotten the orthotics sooner, whether I would have escaped the PF.

So, for me, the non-surgical treatment was Foot Max orthotics. That doesn't mean that another type of orthotic wouldn't work for you. I have been to an orthopedic surgeon, a C.Ped, and a Physical Therapist who have all agreed that this is the right orthotic for me. I also don't wear anything but running shoes with the orthotics, don't go barefoot and do Julie's yoga stretches on a regular basis. On the stretches, though, I never do the one where you pull your toes back towards your body as that hurts the area with the neuroma.

My sister had a traditional neuroma removed and has very few residual symptoms. She doesn't even wear the inserts she's supposed to wear and she wears shoes that make me cringe. She's eight years younger than I and I fear that she will pay for it down the road. Nevertheless, her neuroma had all the classic symptoms and responded very well to treatment. I'm sorry you can't say the same.

I wish I could be of more help but at least you've heard my story! I think you are very wise to be hesitant about any more surgery. If you are having other problems with your feet, reading Scott's Heel Pain Book would be of great benefit. And peruse these Boards for ideas of what has helped other people. There's a great group of people here and they are very knowledgeable.

Good luck!

Re: Non-Surgical Treatment of Neuromas?

Lynn B. on 1/29/04 at 20:20 (143214)

I have not had alchohol injections, although I've seen information on it. My pod. hasn't mentioned it as an option, so I don't know if he does it. What is the success rate? Is it a fairly common procedure? Recovery time?

In addition to the presence of two neuromas, the MRI shows some other stuff on my right foot that I honestly can't decipher: 'large joint effusion of the metatarsophalangeal joint of the hallux,' 'dorsal capsular prolapse,' 'articular surface flattening of the 1st metatarsal head w/subchondral plate cancellous marrow edema indicating a probable chronic articular impaction deformity and subchondral plate area of cancellous marros reabsorption, 'subcutis space edema along the 2nd metatarsal head with a small joint effusion and dorsal capsular prolapse,'small joint effusion of the metatarsophalangeal joint of the 3rd digit.' (Is this another language?) I didn't have the report when I lost saw my pod, but he explained that I had fluid thickening consistent w/arthritis (or something like that)

On both feet, I tend to have achilles tendon problems. On my left foot, I have a lot more nerve stuff, I think TTS...maybe also something else. I tend to have numbness, a feeling of my foot being swollen, tingling pain in different areas around my ankle, shooting pain, and what can only be characterized as 'shocks' of cold. I also have Raynaud's, so my circulation is pretty bad. I've had PF in the past, but it's not bothering me now.

This is likely a longer answer than you were expecting, but any light you can shed would be appreciated. Thank you.

Re: Non-Surgical Treatment of Neuromas?

Lynn B. on 1/29/04 at 20:21 (143215)


Thanks for sharing your story. Unfortunately, two cortisone injections in quick succession did not help me. However, I'm hoping I can find a biomechanical corrective solution like you did with your orthotics. I feel pretty strongly that surgery should only be my very last resort.


Re: Non-Surgical Treatment of Neuromas?

Rose on 2/02/04 at 19:48 (143503)

I tried everything, and the chiropractor, the podiatrist, the acupuncturist and other doctors said that the only real solution is surgery. It was easy and completely healed in six weeks. My problem was that I had PF release surgery on the other foot at the same time, 7 months ago, and that is still taking its time to heal. It has been my experience that neuroma surgery heals very quickly as compared to PF release surgery.
My doctor offered me three choices as to the type of surgeries for the neuroma. We ended up doing the one where he simply cut the tendons I think..to provide more space between the toes in the top of the foot. The other options were to completely remove it,(he said it most likely would grow back) or to do a new procedure, which he is credited of inventing where he takes the nerve and reroutes it over tby the arch in some way.I spoke to a jazzercise instructor who hd this last procedures on both feet at the same time with 100 percent recovery. She is back teaching full time. She also is not young at all and looks great.