All about Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
Tarsal tunnel syndrome also referred to postiterior tibial neuralgia is a condition associated with painful foot condition and neuropathy. It is caused by the compression of the tibial nerve during travelling through the tarsal . The tunnel is located along the inner leg in the medial malleolus.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome brings about numbness of the foot radiating up to the big toe extending to the first three toes. It is characterized by tingling, burning and electrical sensation on the base of foot and heel. Tarsal tunnel syndrome can lead to collection of fluid in foot while standing or walking making the condition worse, because the small muscles will lose nerve supply and create cramping feeling.
Causes of tarsal tunnel syndrome includes.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be caused by activities that exert pressure around the tarsal tunnel. Benign tumours, inflammation in the tendon sheath, bone spurs, nerve ganglion and swelling associated with sprained ankle, this causes tarsal tunnel syndrome as they tend to accumulate pressure in the tarsal tunnel. Flat feet that cause increased pressure around the tunnel region which can lead to compression of nerves.
Symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome include the following;
- Feeling of pain and some tingling around and in the ankles and in some cases the toes,
- Swelling of the foot,
- Tingling, painful burning and numb sensation experience I the lower legs .The pain becomes worse and spreads rapidly in case of standing for a long period, pain becomes worse during activity and ceases while resting,
- Feeling of electric shock sensations,
- Pain that radiates up the leg and downwards to the heel arch and toes,
- Feeling of cold and hot sensation in the foot,
- Feeling like there is reduced paddling in the feet,
- Pain while driving a car,
- Experiencing pain in along posterior Tibial nerve,
- Burning sensation from the foot radiating up to the knee.
Diagnosis of tarsal tunnel syndrome includes the following.
Physical examination that can be done by an expert like Podiatrist, Physician, Orthopedist, Neurologist Physiatrist, Physical therapist or Chiropractor. The experts first enquires about the history concerning the pain as the first step in assessing the tarsal tunnel syndrome.
X-ray can be done to confirm that the pain is not due to fractures in the bone.
MRI can be done to further rule out the pain caused due to nerve compressions.
Nerve conduction tests can be administered by Neurologists, it is carried out by placing electrodes along feet and leg nerves. Electrical impulses are the propagated along the electrodes to determine the intensity and speed at which they travel. The behavior of the impulses determines the presence or absence of tarsal tunnel syndrome.
Treatment of tarsal tunnel syndrome include the following:
- Having rest,
- Strengthening of tibias posterior, tibias anterior, short toe flexors and peroneus,
- Taking anesthetic injections,
- Using wrappings, hot wax baths and orthotics,
- Medication can include anti inflammatory like Anaprox Lyrica, Ultracet, Lidocaine and Neurontin,
- Tarsal tunnel surgery can be carried out to release pressure from the tarsal tunnel region. It involves an incision into the tibial nerve that end up correcting cysts or any problems in the tibial tunnel.
Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome Relief