FAQ Category: Foot


What are some of the biggest challenges when recovering from an Achilles tendon rupture?

The biggest challenges or complications occurring after an Achilles tendon rupture include possibility of re-rupture, decreased quality of life during initial immobilization phase especially if this includes limited weight bearing, time off work, difficulty regaining full strength, and difficulty with full return to previous level of sport participation.


What is Morton’s Neuroma?

Morton Neuroma refers to the interdigital nerve entrapment in the third webspace (occasionally the second webspace) of the foot.


I have been diagnosed with Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome will surgery be required?

Typically non-surgical treatment will be employed first. This may include anti-inflammatory medication, activity modification, night splinting, physical therapy and eliminating use of restrictive clothing or footwear. If this management fails to provide relief surgical measures may be considered.


What is meant by a functional brace that can be worn after Achilles tendon rupture?

Functional non-operative management is a relatively new bracing concept that involves early weight-bearing and range of motion. These two rehabilitation factors have shown to prevent detrimental alterations in muscle characteristics and increase maturation of collagen fibers during the tendon healing process. There is some difficulty with beginning early range of […]


I have had plantar fasciitis for six months now and have worn the night splints and a walking boot and had custom orthotics made but still have it.  My doctor wants me to see a physical therapist.  What can they do for me and is this necessary?

A physical therapist will at your overall alignment (joint structure), how you move, and will tease out any muscle imbalances that might be contributing to your ongoing plantar fasciitis.  They also can perform adjustments if need be, fabricate orthotics, and use manual therapy as well as some modalities to help […]


I am no longer able to straighten my second toe.  It does not hurt but I don’t like the way it looks when I wear flip-flops.  Is there anything I can do to straighten it out?

A bent toe is typically due to ligamentous instability surrounding the toe joint.  Depending on the progression of the deformity (whether or not it is rigid or still flexible) there are several options.  Conservative treatment would be shoe alterations and physical therapy for foot strengthening and addressing your walking form. […]


My mom has several toes that are painful and crossed under.  She says that I should not wear high heels because that is what caused her problem.  Is this true or am I just doomed to have my mom’s feet when I get older?

High heels are identified as a major cause for toes crossing or becoming stuck in a bent position, called hammer toe. Shoes with a narrow toe box or shoes that place an excessive amount of force across the base of your toes can cause hyperextension of the toe joints (bending […]


Our grandson was diagnosed with a rare tumor of the big toe called a synovial sarcoma. It wasn’t picked up on any X-ray or MRI and misdiagnosed as “turf toe.” But as our son (who is a medical student) pointed out, they didn’t do an MRI with contrast or they might have found it sooner. We are wondering why not?

As you probably know by now, synovial sarcoma is a malignant soft-tissue tumor that occurs most often in the extremities (arms and legs). A regular X-ray will not show soft tissue malignancies. It was unusual that the more advanced imaging (MRI) did not at least show some change in intensity […]


Last year, I sprained my ankle but that wasn’t the worst of it. Evidently, the injury was enough to damage the joint surface of the talus bone. Now I have a hole (the orthopedic surgeon calls it a “defect”) that needs filling. Is this like having a filling put in a tooth? How does it work?

When a joint is injured as a result of a joint sprain or fracture, there can be damage done to the layer of cartilage just above the joint surface. These are called osteochondral or chondral lesions and they occur in up to half of all ankle injuries. Surgical transplantation techniques […]


I have a Morton’s neuroma. My foot doctor gave me a special pad to wear that hurts as much as the stupid neuroma. Is there anything else that can be done? I know we are trying to avoid surgery but this is becoming unbearable.

Interdigital neuroma (sometimes called a Morton’s neuroma) is the medical term for a painful growth in the forefoot. The pain is most commonly felt between the third and fourth toes but can also occur in the area between the second and third toes. The most common cause of pain is […]


I’m going to have a steroid injection into my very large Morton’s neuroma. Do you think a big one like mine is less likely to get better with just one injection? Will I end up having to go back for more?

The question of whether size matters when treating Morton’s neuroma) by steroid injection has been raised by a group of researchers from Scotland. Usually, this type of treatment involves an injection of lidocaine and cortisone into the area. There is some evidence that this approach may help temporarily relieve symptoms. […]


I’ve heard there is some use of stem cells to repair cartilage. I have a deep hole in my ankle bone that has not responded to any other treatment (I’ve had three surgeries so far). I’m looking for anything that might work. What do you know about this and where do these stem cells come from?

Ankle sprains and other significant trauma (e.g., bone fractures) can cause a condition known as osteochondral lesions. These are defects or “holes” in the cartilage lining a joint. Sometimes the damage is enough to create a hole all the way down into the bone.It sounds like this might be what […]