Chemical nerve ablation can be used for painful Morton’s neuromas and involves a series of alcohol injections into the foot. A minimum of three and a maximum of seven alcohol injections are given, each a week apart. Alcohol has a higher affinity for nerve tissue and is used to chemically destroy the nerve. The injections have a low complication rate and are found to be successful at reducing pain in nearly 90% of cases.* Some patients will note tingling and increased burning following the first injection but this is usually temporary. Like with surgery, there will be permanent numbness in the area following the alcohol injections. Surgery and the complications associated with neuroma surgery can be avoided with chemical nerve ablation.
*Dockery GL. The Treatment of Intermetatarsal Neuromas With 4% Alcohol Sclerosing Injections. The Journal of Foot and Ankle Surgery 1999;38:403-8.
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