The tarsal tunnel is an area that takes the shape of a tunnel inside the part of your foot that is located between your ankle bone and the ligaments and tendons that span the length and width of the bottom of your foot. It carries all the nerves, ligaments, and other tissues that allow your foot to move.
The primary nerve responsible for this syndrome lies inside the tarsal tunnel and is called the tibial nerve. This nerve is necessary for providing a sense of feeling to the bottom of your feet. When this nerve and the tissue around it becomes inflamed and irritated due to excessive pressure from walking and exercising, the painful condition of tarsal tunnel syndrome is often the result.
4 causes of tarsal tunnel syndrome include the following:
- Varicose veins
- Inflammation after an injury to the foot or ankle injury
- Complications from systemic disease like arthritis and diabetes
- Having untreated flat feet (overpronation)
To confirm a diagnosis of tarsal tunnel, your podiatrist will do a physical exam followed by any necessary imaging studies (X-ray, CT or MRI). Electrical conduction testing such as EMG may also be required.
Treatments for tarsal tunnel syndrome include:
- Corticosteroid injections
- Medicine for pain and inflammation reduction
- Custom orthotic inserts and braces to reduce the stress and pressure on the nerve
If you need help treating tarsal tunnel syndrome, consult with your podiatrist to avoid complications. At Family Foot & Ankle Clinic, Dr. Stephen Markantone treats a wide variety of foot and ankle conditions including sports injuries, diabetic foot issues, pediatric foot conditions, toe and foot deformities, fungal infections, and heel problems. Equipped with the most advanced technologies and a dedicated staff, Family Foot & Ankle Clinic provides individualized and high-quality care for patients in the North Versailles and Delmont, PA areas. Contact our North Versailles office at 412-824-9370 or our Delmont office at 724-733-3338 to schedule an appointment.