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Foot & Ankle Problems Message Board

Foot & Ankle Problems Board Index

I have been fighting Morton's Neuroma pain since November in both feet. A visit to a local podiatrist ended up with a cortisone injection that made the situation worse in my right foot. I wear a size 14 shoe so finding shoes is difficult. I have a relatively high arch.

I have had three sets of custom orthotics made, one by a Pedorthist (used foam box cast), one by the POD that gave me the injection. One by a third POD. The inserts from the pedorthist (who supposedly makes orthotics for olympians) are made of cork & some various soft materials, they are over 1 3/8' thick cork at the highest point on the arch. They fit my arch when when there is no pressure on my feet but, when I put them into shoes and stand or walk it feels like the entire weight of my body is on my arches, with several 'pressure points' that really press on my feet and make localized pain points. I have tried to wear them for two months and cannot wear them for more than 2 hours. When I voiced my concerns to the pedorthist he said 'I made casts of your feet, they are right there is nothing wrong.' These cost $350.

The POD who gave me the injection had an office girl make plaster slippers of my feet, then after three weeks gave me a set of 'orthotics' that are labled 'system 3.0 sport'. These are very thin and hard. They have an extremely hard heel (raised about 1/4 ')and some type of low, thin, fibreglass arch. There is almost no padding in them. They have a heart shaped 'metatarsal pad' in them that is almost 3/8' tall. When I wear these it is like walking on concrete with golf balls under my feet right behind the ball of my foot. When I stand on them my little toe hangs about 1/8' off the side. I was told to wear these for 1 hour the first day then add an hour each day, If they started to hurt my feet I was supposed to 'back up' for a couple of days then try to advance with time again. I can't get past 2 hours with these. I paid $350 for these. The POD said that he only gives one injection and if it doesn't work he goes directly to neuratectomy, he also said that 'my prescription is correct, you should consider surgery'. When I asked him about sclerosing injections or cryosurgery he told me that those procedures are for 'innovators and lecture circuit doctors'. When asked about stump neuromas or complex regional pain syndrome as a result of the surgery he said, 'yeah, that happens sometimes'. This POD is the local teaching 'resident' for podiatry at a respected local hospital.

A second POD made me a set of 3/4 length plastc arch supports that were 'heat molded' to my feet. He made a couple of adjustments to them and they fit my arches fairly well. However after wearing them for more than a couple of hours my heels start to hurt (burning pain in the center of my heel) It's like walking on concrete. These cost $179.

I also had cryosurgery on both the neuromas in both feet at this time.

Three weeks after the cryosurgery the burning / electrical pain in my right foot has returned and I have had sharp needle like pain in both feet from the trauma of the cryosurgery that doesn't seem to be improving real fast. The POD who performed the cryo recommends more time, ice and NSAIDS. I cannot disagree with this approach, I may just be impatient.

I have purchased the following three pairs of shoes:

1) Clarks 'Unstructured' dress shoes. These shoes are least offensive to my feet with respect to the Morton's problem. The problem with them is they have very unusual insoles. Right over the heel there is a sewn in rubber button, they also have almost no arch support in them. When I wear these shoes for a long period of time I start getting a 'buzzer/burning' pain in my heel. I've tried putting pads over the heel area and after wearing the shoes you can remove the pad and see where the sewn in plug actually has impressed the pads. The POD that made me the plastic arch supports told me that the reason that my heels hurt when standing was that I was stretching my arches due to lack of support. These shoes are very flexible and pliable.

2) New balance 992 walking shoe. When I wear these shoes I feel the 'marble' in my forefoot from the neuroma in both feet. It feels like my sock is bunched up under my toes.

Almost every pair of shoes I try on regardless of manufacturer feels like this.

Walking in these shoes makes my forefoot hurt over time but the 'buzzers' in my heels seem better when wearing these shoes.

3) Brooks Dyad Same as the New balance 992

I can walk barefoot all day in the house on carpeting and not have the neuroma problem make my life unbearable. If I walk on the lawn with the 992's the neuromas 'sock ball' is significantly reduced. As soon as I walk or stand on a hard surface (especially concrete) the neuroma pain goes through the roof with the New balance and Brooks shoe. It feels like ther are golf balls under my toes. When I wear the Clarks shoes the neuroma pain is bearable on hard surfaces but, the 'buzzers' in my heels become unbearable.

The only 'gait analysis' done on me by anyone was having me walk down the hallway and they watched me walk from behind.

It would seem to me that if I can go barefoot on carpeting on all day without significant foot pain I should be able to find a suitable shoe / orthotic combination that can help.

This has become a very frustrating problem as the original pedorthist and POD are very hard headed. They don't want to make any adjustments or admit that their approach could have been wrong. Shoe stores don't want to see me because they always end up 'ordering in' shoes for me to try on because they don't carry 14's or 14 wides. They don't even want to order any more shoes for me unless I agree to purchase them unconditionally. They say 'we can't sell shoes that size and can't afford to ship them in and stock them'. (I'm 6'3' 210, it would seem to me that there have to be a lot of big guys that wear size 14 in the world.)

There isn't even a store within 50 miles of my home that has a pair of Crox RX in size 13.

I've spent a tremendous amount of money and time and only have frustration and continued pain for my efforts. Has anyone got relief from this problem. I've seen nothing on the internet that indicated that relief is possible, only stories of failed nerve removal, emergency room visits from alcohol injection pain, and stories of countless dollars spent on orthotics that do nothing. I feel that I am one step away from a wheelchair and endless pain at age 50. I work in factories so I walk and stand a lot on concrete floors. Today unless I am barefoot on padded carpet I cannot stand still for more than 5 minutes without unbearable pain. If I try to work, after 4 or 5 hours I can't even do my job because all I can think of is the pain in my feet.

Sorry for the length of this post, but this has been an ongoing issue, and I am getting depressed over that fact that nothing seems to help. Does anyone have any positive results in these "neuroma" matters. I feel hopelessly condemned to pain.

Thanks for listening ...

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