Trapped Nerve in Foot

Has anybody suffered from a trapped nerve in the ball of their foot who could give me advice on treatment? Last week out of the blue I had a sharp pain in my foot, like a red hot poker between my toes and my middle toe went numb. This has got progressively worse through the week and I now have pain with every step. My GP gave me anti-inflammatory's, told me to rest and come back in a week but these haven't really helped. Any advice would be appreciated. I hope this is a short term issue that will go away and not a long term problem especially since I was planning to start my half marathon schedule in a few weeks!


  • Has nobody had issues with a trapped nerve in the foot?
  • It could be a Morton's Neuroma - the nerve between the 3rd and 4th metatarsals becomes inflamed and irritated causing pain and pins and needles/ numbness into the 3rd and 4th toes.

    Some info from NHS Choices here;

    Does that sound right for your symptoms?

    In most cases rest and anti-inflams will settle it and you may need to change your footwear, especially if the toe box is too narrow and compressing your foot. You could try ice but sometimes ice makes nerve pain worse so just see what works for you.
  • Tom thanks, that sounds about right actually but I'll go back to my GP and try getting a referral.

    From reading it looks like it could be a long term issue, I hope I'll still be able to run with it once the pain settles!

    Its only a week since it flaired up so I hope it's just one of those things that will go away with a bit of rest.
  • I hope it settles quickly for you. What anti-inflams did the GP give you?

    I have heard that Neurofen Advanced is good for nerve related pain like this. I'm a Physio though, not a pharmacist or Dr!
  • Tom, I've been taking diclofenac since tuesday which has taken the edge off, and I'll try and get some cushioned insoles for my work shoes and hopefully it will settle. I did have physio a year ago for an unrelated issue on the same side and was told I have a slightly flattened arch on that foot, so this could be the route of the problem.
  • Ok, Diclofenac is pretty good, I'd stick with that. With anti-inflams they build up in your system so they are most effective over a 2-3 week period. So it's worth completing the course even if the symptoms have settled.
  • Hi GP78, well I am 3 weeks post Moreton Neuroma surgery - yes pain was as you describe. I ended up having a steroid injection between the toes that lasted 3 months the first time and enabled me to continue running...then the pain retuened. Next injection lasted 2 weeks so we decided on the surgery and my consultant decided on the MIND treatment rather than the nerve removal. This is where he has cut the ligaments and made a space for the nerve so I will keep feeling in the toes. 

    The weeks after surgery are a bloody nightmare, as I had it done the week after Brighton Marathon and really have cabin-fever. I managed to get out for 1.5 miles this last Tuesday and 2.5 miles this last Thursday and ...pain free. 

    If you do go for the surgery I can give some hints re recovery. Good luck!

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