The characteristic sign of a plantar fibroma is a noticeable lump in the arch that feels firm to the touch. This mass can remain the same size or get larger over time, or additional fibromas may develop.
To diagnose a plantar fibroma, the foot and ankle surgeon will examine the foot and press on the affected area. Sometimes this can produce the pain that extends down to the toes. An MRI or biopsy may be performed to further evaluate the lump and aid in diagnosis.
Non-surgical treatment may help relieve the pain of a plantar fibroma, although it will not make the mass disappear. The podiatrist may select one or more of the following non-surgical options:
- Steroid injections. Injecting corticosteroid medication into the mass may help shrink and thereby relieve the pain that occurs when walking. This reduction may be temporary and the fibroma could slowly return to its original size.
- Orthotic devices. If the fibroma is stable, meaning it is not changing in size, custom orthotics (shoe inserts) may relieve the pain by distributing the patient's weight away from the fibroma.
- Physical therapy. The pain is sometimes treated through physical therapy methods that deliver anti-inflammatory medication into the fibroma without the need for injection.
Surgical removal of a plantar fibroma may result in a flattening of the arch or development of hammertoes. Orthotic devices may be prescribed to provide support to the foot. Due to the high incidence of recurrence with this condition, continued follow-up with the foot and ankle surgeon is recommended.
If you have a plantar fibroma and do not currently see a podiatrist, call one of our six locations to make an appointment.
Connecticut Foot Care Centers
Podiatrists in CT
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