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Neuromas vs. VFF's ?

by (11142)
Updated September 16, 2014 at 7:29 PM
Created September 09, 2011 at 2:04 PM

Several years ago I developed a neuroma (pinched nerve) between my 3rd & 4th metatarsal in my left foot. I'd been wearing tactical boots every day and I think these caused the inflammation in my foot. Wearing small raised pads out of felt that "separated" the bones in my feet greatly helped, and the neuroma healed.

Fast forward to present, and I've been wearing my VFF's for about a year now (give or take days when I'd wear flip flops or a low-heeled shoe to work). Over the past week, I've noticed that same pain in my foot when I wear regular shoes, but in the right foot. But when I wear my Vibrams, the pain is nonexistent.

Has wearing the Vibrams gotten my feet accustomed to naturally spreading out when I walk? And now when I wear dress shoes I get that pinched nerve sensation. Has anyone ever experienced this? The few dress shoes I wear aren't restrictive, have elastic to "hold" the foot in place, and are cushioned.

7b6749c2f5b6176dc60773651a9dc76c
0 · July 11, 2014 at 2:56 PM

Barefeet, although your comment here was a few years ago, I am hoping you see this. I am like you in that I had surgery on left foot for neuroma and have now developed a stump neuroma. It is worse than before the surgery. Your comments speak of going to a minimalist/barefoot style and that helping with your right foot, but I was wondering if this gave relief on the left foot where you had surgery? Thanks

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961 · October 20, 2011 at 2:47 PM

I used one of them when it was really bad. They do work. I made it myself. I did not stick it to my foot but made it into a sleeve that I could take on and off.

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11142 · September 10, 2011 at 12:00 AM

barefeet, if you're still having trouble with your neuromas, try putting these inside your shoes: http://www.myfootshop.com/detail.asp?productid=729 These are the ones I bought from my podiatrist, 20ct for $5.

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2028 · September 09, 2011 at 7:45 PM

Something from the softstarshoes line should work for you. Foot width doesn't seem to be a problem with their shoes. Of course, stylishness doesn't seem to be a consideration for the designers but looking cool just doesn't feel as important when your feet really hurt.

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2028 · September 09, 2011 at 7:43 PM

Ah, I wish I'd known that before. I had three cortisone injections, which just made the problem worse. I was 21 and that was more than 15 years ago. VFFs didn't exist. If I knew then what I know now, you can bet I'd never have opted for the surgery.

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11142 · September 09, 2011 at 4:11 PM

I think it would be worth a try, Anne. Perhaps try out the Fila Skeletoes first? They're not as minimalist at the Vibrams, but are half the price and offer a little more support. You might want to remove the pull tabs on the top and back of the shoe, as I found they dug into my skin. They're much more comfortable that way!

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 3:28 PM

Yeah, I wouldn't opt for surgery either. It's just an inflamed nerve, take away the inflammation and it will heal on its own. The most I had done for mine was getting a cortizone injection between my toes. But the felt cushions did more for it than the cortizone.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 2:58 PM

??? Because they make wearing regular shoes impossible for you? My Vibrams have been helping the neuroma, it's the regular shoes which are messing me up.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 2:49 PM

The shoes which aggravated the neuroma were ones I've been wearing for years because they're so comfortable--not tight-fitting at all. I can't explain why they've been giving me issues all of a sudden :/

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961 · September 09, 2011 at 3:06 PM

I would never have neuroma surgery. I work as an assistant for a podiatrist.( I do not follow the doctors advice) I'd wear the Vibrams. I wore New Balance to hike 8 miles in Hawaii last winter. I live in FLAT Indiana. In the space of a couple hours, my shins were killing me. I could also only walk barefoot. I could not wear flip flops, or athletic shoes. I switched to my vibrams and hiked all over a volcano that afternoon. I stayed in them for the rest of the vacation.No pain when wearing them. My feet are wide and tall.I am a 56 year old female. It is hard to find shoes I can wear. I don't care what they look like as long as they do not injure my feet. I have to wear the smallest men's vibrams. I believe that most shoes are like wearing casts on your feet. They make your feet weak. Just like wearing a cast. They make them prone to breaking easily. Feet must be exercised just like the rest of your body to stay supple. Body weight must stay in the normal range. We have so many people who are twice what they should weigh coming in with major pain on feet that are over worked just to keep them standing. Sugar issues cause lack of circulation in the feet and cause a lot of pain. Paleo eating should be recommended to everyone.... But again, I am only the lowly assistant and not allowed to speak. I just observe.

I exercise my feet just as much as the rest of me by pulling a hand towel toward me on the floor with my toes, Stretching the tendon on the bottom, and twisting and turning on them doing kick boxing on rubber mats. I go barefoot as much as possible.(not the doctors advice.)

4fca5e11d50731edbf4cf2ec38691aa3
961 · October 20, 2011 at 2:47 PM

I used one of them when it was really bad. They do work. I made it myself. I did not stick it to my foot but made it into a sleeve that I could take on and off.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 10, 2011 at 12:00 AM

barefeet, if you're still having trouble with your neuromas, try putting these inside your shoes: http://www.myfootshop.com/detail.asp?productid=729 These are the ones I bought from my podiatrist, 20ct for $5.

27e79ef3308bb5f2d7bd04ee7eea7b79
2028 · September 09, 2011 at 7:43 PM

Ah, I wish I'd known that before. I had three cortisone injections, which just made the problem worse. I was 21 and that was more than 15 years ago. VFFs didn't exist. If I knew then what I know now, you can bet I'd never have opted for the surgery.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 3:28 PM

Yeah, I wouldn't opt for surgery either. It's just an inflamed nerve, take away the inflammation and it will heal on its own. The most I had done for mine was getting a cortizone injection between my toes. But the felt cushions did more for it than the cortizone.

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910 · September 09, 2011 at 4:04 PM

For years I suffered with painful Morton's neuroma of both feet and "idiopathic" peripheral neuropathy. I did opt to have surgery on one foot to see if it would take away some of the excruciating pain I was having. This was about 15 yrs ago. Well, the surgery did nothing for the pain so I did not have surgery on the other foot. What did make a difference is when I totally eliminated gluten from my life 8 yrs ago. Now I have foot pain from neuropathy of 0-1 and the other neuroma does not seem to be an issue. It is all about inflammation. Now low carb paleo for blood sugar control.

I have been thinking about getting a minimalist shoe of some sort. I have wide feet and hard to fit. My toes are short so I don't think the ffv would work for me. It is only the past few years that I can go barefoot in the house. I still have residual numbness from the neuropathy but that seems to be lessening. Maybe one day I will again have normal feet.

27e79ef3308bb5f2d7bd04ee7eea7b79
2028 · September 09, 2011 at 7:45 PM

Something from the softstarshoes line should work for you. Foot width doesn't seem to be a problem with their shoes. Of course, stylishness doesn't seem to be a consideration for the designers but looking cool just doesn't feel as important when your feet really hurt.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 4:11 PM

I think it would be worth a try, Anne. Perhaps try out the Fila Skeletoes first? They're not as minimalist at the Vibrams, but are half the price and offer a little more support. You might want to remove the pull tabs on the top and back of the shoe, as I found they dug into my skin. They're much more comfortable that way!

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8979 · September 09, 2011 at 2:52 PM

This is why I don't wear minimalist shoes. A simple summer beach thong is all the padding I need, and my toes can fan out over the edges when they need more room. I wait for them to go on sale and buy up a few pairs. The nicer ones, not the colored rubber kind. $15 instead of $5. That is as minimalist as I'll go. I don't switch to regular shoes anymore. If I need something more substantial I'll wear an original crocs-type style so my feet can swim in them or a men's extra-wide running shoe.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 2:58 PM

??? Because they make wearing regular shoes impossible for you? My Vibrams have been helping the neuroma, it's the regular shoes which are messing me up.

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2028 · September 09, 2011 at 2:30 PM

I have a stump neuroma in my left foot and a Morton's neuroma in my right foot. The stump neuroma is the result of surgery to remove a Morton's neuroma that formed after a few months of wearing shoes with approximately 1 1/2-2" heels.

About a year ago, I seriously aggravated the neuromas in both feet by wearing 5-10 canyoneering shoes for two full days. Both neuromas were so badly aggravated by the stiffness of the soles - the shoes weren't overly wide, and I even wore them comfortably with neoprene socks - that I could not walk. At all. With any type of shoe. The only time the painw as bearable was when I was barefoot.

As soon as I got back from my trip, I started wearing my KSOs or being barefoot 24/7 (I wore the KSOs only occasionally prior to that time). It took about a month for the Morton's neuroma in the right foot to subside to the point where I thought "OK, maybe now I won't need surgery after all."

To answer your question - if your shoes are too tight, you should be swapping them out for something that fits anyway. If they aren't, it could be the type of the shoe and the heel height, not just the fact that your toes cannot spread out. http://www.footsmart.com/health-conditions-mortons-neuroma

7b6749c2f5b6176dc60773651a9dc76c
0 · July 11, 2014 at 2:56 PM

Barefeet, although your comment here was a few years ago, I am hoping you see this. I am like you in that I had surgery on left foot for neuroma and have now developed a stump neuroma. It is worse than before the surgery. Your comments speak of going to a minimalist/barefoot style and that helping with your right foot, but I was wondering if this gave relief on the left foot where you had surgery? Thanks

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e
11142 · September 09, 2011 at 2:49 PM

The shoes which aggravated the neuroma were ones I've been wearing for years because they're so comfortable--not tight-fitting at all. I can't explain why they've been giving me issues all of a sudden :/

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