Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS) is a condition that affects the tibial nerve in the ankle. The tibial nerve runs through the tarsal tunnel, which is a passage of bones and ligaments in the ankle. TTS is a compression of the nerves within this tunnel that causes pain, burning, and tingling in the bottom of the feet and toes.


Tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS) occurs when the tibial nerve is damaged or experiences pressure. Some of the most common causes are flat feet, high arches, swelling after an injury, and irregularities such as bone spurs, varicose veins, and tumors. Conditions such as diabetes, poor circulation, and arthritis can also cause TTS.


Symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS) include numbness, tingling, and a burning sensation in the bottom of the foot and toes. A cramping sensation may also be noticeable in the arches and toes. Symptoms worsen with activity and tend to be more severe in the evening. As the condition progresses, symptoms may last for longer periods of time.


Physicians will review symptoms and conduct a physical examination in order to diagnose tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS). Further testing, including an EMG or MRI, may also be used to evaluate nerve damage.


Treatment for tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS) will vary depending on what is causing the condition. TTS from tissue swelling is usually treated with anti-inflammatory medications, corticosteroid injections, and orthotic devices. Tarsal tunnel decompression may be used to create more room for the nerve within the tarsal tunnel.

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