Tarsal tunnel syndrome: still more opinions than evidence. Status of the art

Neurol Sci. 2017 Oct;38(10):1735-1739. doi: 10.1007/s10072-017-3039-x. Epub 2017 Jun 29.


Tarsal tunnel syndrome is an entrapment neuropathy of the posterior tibial nerve or its terminal branches within its fibro-osseous tunnel beneath the flexor retinaculum on the medial side of the ankle. The condition is frequently underdiagnosed leading to controversies regarding its epidemiology and to an intense debate in the literature. With the advent of nerve imaging techniques, the diagnostic confirmation and the etiological identification have become more accurate. However, management of this entrapment neuropathy remains challenging because of many intervention strategies but limited robust evidence. Uncertainties still exist about the best conservative treatment, timing of surgical intervention, and best surgical approach. In the attempt to clarify these aspects and to provide the reader some understanding of the status of the art, we have reviewed the published literature on this controversial condition.

Keywords: Literature review; Nerve entrapments; Tarsal tunnel syndrome; Tibial nerve.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome / physiopathology
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome / therapy*