Treatment for tarsal tunnel syndrome includes the use of anti-inflammatory medication, wearing orthotics (artificial devices such as splints, braces or supports), corticosteroid injections or, usually as a last resort, surgery to relieve pressure on the affected nerve.
Surgery to treat tarsal tunnel syndrome aims to relieve the pressure on the tibial nerve that is causing the pain and numbness in the ankle (or ankles). Tarsal tunnel syndrome release surgery usually requires local ligaments and tarsal muscles to be cut and reattached in order to relieve the compression of the tibial nerve.
The surgery is usually carried out using keyhole techniques; this requires only small incisions in the skin which aids healing and speeds recovery. The operation may be carried out under a general anaesthetic (so you’ll be asleep) or a local anaesthetic (so you’ll stay awake but won’t feel anything). The operation usually takes around an hour and you’ll usually go home on the same day.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome surgery is usually very successful at treating the condition.
Immediately after surgery we’ll help you manage any pain or discomfort with painkillers. We’ll discuss your aftercare and arrange any follow-up appointments with you before you leave hospital.
In the next few days you’ll be able to walk with the aid of crutches but you’ll need plenty of rest with your leg raised. You’ll be offered a programme of physiotherapy to aid your recovery, and we’ll let you know how soon you’ll be able to resume normal day to day activities.
As with any surgical procedure there can be some risks, including:
- blood clots (including deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
Anti-inflammatory medication, wearing orthotics, or steroid injections.