Morton’s Neuroma Treatment – A New Approach
Morton’s Neuroma is a common debilitating nerve related condition affecting both Men and Women. Although footwear advice and modification, orthotic therapy and surgery can be highly effecting in dealing with this condition, Ethanol Ablation is often the treatment of choice.
So, what is Ethanol Ablation?
In a nutshell, Ethanol Ablasion is the direct injection of ethanol (alcohol) directly into the neuroma under the guidance of ultrasound. The highly skilled practitioner, usually a Radiologist, initially injects a local anesthetic. This is followed by the ethanol injection directly into the neuroma. The process destroys the neuroma over time. In some cases a swelling known as a Bursa or Bursitis is present directly adjacent to the nerve and is responsible for putting pressure on the nerve causing the pain. In such cases a corticosteroid injection is administered to settle things down.
How many injections are required?
Usually four injections, one every three weeks.
Do the injections hurt?
The injections are mildly uncomfortable. Some patients require analgesic medication for a day or so.
Certainly the post procedure pain is less than surgical intervention.
When should I consider Ethanol Ablation?
If, you are suffering pain in your forefoot area that is exacerbated when wearing shoes, you should consult a Podiatrist first. Your Podiatrist will perform a thorough history and examination. If there is any doubt regarding the diagnosis your Podiatrist should then refer you for ultrasound imaging.
Once a diagnosis of Morton’s Neuroma is confirmed, a biomechanical (the physics of walking) examination and footwear assessment will be undertaken. Simple shoe changes and possibly orthotic therapy may resolve the problem. If these steps are unsuccessful, Ethanol Ablation may be appropriate as the next step.