Treatment of recurrent neuroma of the interdigital nerve by implantation of the proximal nerve into muscle in the arch of the foot

J Foot Ankle Surg. 2001 Nov-Dec;40(6):404-10. doi: 10.1016/s1067-2516(01)80009-0.


A prospective study was done to evaluate the results of treating recurrent "Morton's" neuroma by a technique that combined resecting the interdigital neuroma through a plantar approach and implantation of the proximal end of the nerve into an intrinsic muscle in the arch of the foot. As a part of this study, quantitative sensory testing was done for the medial plantar and medial calcaneal nerves. Seventeen recurrent interdigital neuromas were resected in 13 patients. Pain was identified on physical examination as being due to neuromas located in the first (one), second (six), third, (eight) and fourth (two) web spaces. Seven of the 13 patients were found to have, by quantitative sensory testing and physical examination, an associated tarsal tunnel syndrome responsible for symptoms related to numbness in the foot in addition to the pain of the recurrent neuroma. These patients had tarsal tunnel decompression at the time of the neuroma resection. At a mean follow-up time of 33.8 months (range 24-42 months), done by direct physician interview and examination, 80% of the patients had excellent relief of symptoms, returned to their regular job, and wore usual footwear. Twenty percent of the patients had good relief of symptoms, worked at a different job, and had to change their footwear. It is concluded that recurrent pain after a dorsal interdigital neurectomy can be treated successfully through a plantar approach with implantation of the proximal end of the nerve into an intrinsic muscle. This study also identified an association of tarsal tunnel syndrome in 54% of this series of patients with recurrent Morton's neuroma.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Foot Diseases / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / surgery*
  • Neuroma / surgery*
  • Peripheral Nervous System Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome / surgery