Burning, Tingling, Shooting or Numbness in Feet – Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

by | Feb 27, 2017 | Ankle

We are on our feet everyday. Whether it is going to work, exercising, or spending time with the family, it is almost impossible to avoid using our feet. With our feet being so active in our everyday lives, injuries and problems may be unavoidable. One injury that may cause issues with your feet is a painful condition called tarsal tunnel syndrome. This condition may prevent you from doing everyday tasks or activities one likes to do.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, in your ankle, is similar to carpal tunnel syndrome in your wrist. In both conditions, symptoms are caused by compression of a nerve that runs through a small space.  In tarsal tunnel syndrome, the nerve is located on the inside of you ankle.

 What causes tarsal tunnel?

  • Inflammation – Increased swelling in the tarsal tunnel of your ankle may compress the nerve. Inflammation may occur from an ankle sprain or other injury, or systemic disease.
  • Foot Structure – Some foot positioning, such as flat feet, may stress the inside of the ankle. This stress can irritate the nerve causing the symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome.
  • Abnormal structure – Ganglion cysts or varicose veins are space occupying structures that may compress or cause irritation to the nerve.

What will tarsal tunnel feel like?

  • Burning
  • Tingling
  • Shooting
  • Numbness

Treating tarsal tunnel syndrome depends on the cause of the nerve compression. Examination of the foot and ankle is completed to determine the best options to effectively treat this condition. Common treatments include rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory medication: these treatments help to reduce swelling and relieve the painful symptoms. Imaging is sometimes helpful to determine specific causes for pain.  Other treatments may include injections, laser therapy, or physical therapy, the goal being to reduce symptoms and allow the nerve to heal. Custom foot orthotics are often helpful in reducing stress, and thus symptoms, to the nerve.  If conservative treatment has been exhausted, surgery may be indicated.

Our feet are very important to us and we use them everyday. Neurological problems are common in the feet, so if you notice any symptoms such as burning, tingling, or shooting pain, give us a call @ 721-4007 or visit us online @ alpinefoot.com