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The Tibial Nerve and Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Tuesday, 15 June 2021 00:00

The tarsal tunnel is a narrow shaft on the inside of the ankle which is formed by connective tissue and bones. Tendons, blood vessels and nerves travel through the tarsal tunnel, including the tibial nerve—which runs down along the back of the leg and passes through the tarsal tunnel at the ankle. The tibial nerve can become compressed within the tarsal tunnel due to ankle injuries, varicose veins, growths, masses or tumors pressing on the nerve, or conditions like flat feet, diabetes or arthritis. This is known as tarsal tunnel syndrome. Symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome may include sharp or shooting pain, numbness or tingling, or a burning, pins-and-needles, or electric shock sensation. These symptoms are usually felt on the bottom of the foot or the interior side of the ankle, although they may occur anywhere along the tibial nerve. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact a podiatrist who can determine if you have tarsal tunnel syndrome and use a variety of methods to treat it.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Dr. Milton N. Kondiles of Kondiles Chicagoland Footcare. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, which can also be called tibial nerve dysfunction, is an uncommon condition of misfiring peripheral nerves in the foot. The tibial nerve is the peripheral nerve in the leg responsible for sensation and movement of the foot and calf muscles. In tarsal tunnel syndrome, the tibial nerve is damaged, causing problems with movement and feeling in the foot of the affected leg.

Common Cause of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Involves pressure or an injury, direct pressure on the tibial nerve for an extended period of time, sometimes caused by other body structures close by or near the knee.
  • Diseases that damage nerves, including diabetes, may cause tarsal tunnel syndrome.
  • At times, tarsal tunnel syndrome can appear without an obvious cause in some cases.

The Effects of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Different sensations, an afflicted person may experience pain, tingling, burning or other unusual sensations in the foot of the affected leg.
  • The foot muscles, toes and ankle become weaker, and curling your toes or flexing your foot can become difficult.
  • If condition worsens, infections and ulcers may develop on the foot that is experiencing the syndrome.

A physical exam of the leg can help identify the presence of tarsal tunnel syndrome. Medical tests, such as a nerve biopsy, are also used to diagnose the condition. Patients may receive physical therapy and prescriptive medication. In extreme cases, some may require surgery.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Arlington Heights, and Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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