Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy in Patients with Morton's Neuroma A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial

J Am Podiatr Med Assoc. 2016 Mar;106(2):93-9. doi: 10.7547/14-131.


Background: The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) for the treatment of Morton's neuroma by measuring changes in patient pain, function, and neuroma size.

Methods: Patients with Morton's neuroma were randomly assigned to either the ESWT group or the sham stimulation group. Outcome measures, including visual analog scale (VAS) and American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society lesser toes (AOFAS) scores, were assessed at baseline and 1 and 4 weeks after treatment. The Johnson satisfaction test was also performed 1 and 4 weeks after treatment. The neuroma diameter was measured using ultrasonography at baseline and 4 weeks after treatment.

Results: Patients receiving ESWT exhibited significantly decreased VAS scores 1 and 4 weeks after treatment relative to baseline, and AOFAS scores were significantly improved 4 weeks after treatment relative to baseline. In the sham stimulation group, VAS and AOFAS scores showed no significant changes at any time after treatment. Neither group showed significant changes in Johnson satisfaction test results or neuroma diameter.

Conclusions: These results suggest that ESWT may reduce pain in patients with Morton's neuroma.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • High-Energy Shock Waves / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metatarsalgia / diagnosis
  • Metatarsalgia / etiology
  • Metatarsalgia / therapy*
  • Metatarsophalangeal Joint / diagnostic imaging*
  • Middle Aged
  • Morton Neuroma / complications
  • Morton Neuroma / diagnosis
  • Morton Neuroma / therapy*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ultrasonography
  • Young Adult