Can the CareTec II relieve tarsal tunnel syndrome?
Less known but just as painful as its cousin the carpal tunnel syndrome, pain in the tarsal tunnel may nevertheless be relieved with a CareTec II TENS/EMS unit. The tarsal tunnel is the canal that lies between the bump on the inside of the ankle and the ligaments that stretch across the foot, scientifically known as the medial malleolus and flexor retinaculum, respectively. The tarsal tunnel contains nerves, arteries and tendons that are essential for the feet to move and flex. More importantly, the tibial nerve is located there as well; compression of this nerve results in tarsal tunnel syndrome, also known as posterior tibial neuralgia.
The causes of this condition can be related to injury, disease or the natural shape of the foot. Flat feet and fallen arches can compress or strain the tibial nerve. This nerve can also be compressed by swelling brought about by an ankle sprain, or by conditions like arthritis or diabetes. Varicose veins, ganglion cysts, swollen tendons, bone spurs, and other enlarged or abnormal structures can also cause tibial nerve compression. Symptoms include shooting pain in the foot, numbness, and a tingling or burning sensation.
If you recognize those symptoms, you may have tarsal tunnel syndrome, but you must talk to a doctor –such as a neurologist or nerve specialist-before taking any measures. Reaching a proper diagnosis may include a comprehensive clinical exam, a complete medical history, electrical testing (for example an EMG or nerve construction study), and imaging (for instance X-rays, CT, or MRI scan). A diagnosis is needed in order to not only establish how serious the condition is, but also the treatment to be prescribed. Though a surgical procedure is an alternative, it should be resorted to only in the most severe cases.
As a matter of fact, there are several non-surgical tarsal tunnel syndrome treatment options such as swelling-relieving anti-inflammatory medications or steroid injections into the nerves, and orthosis (braces, splints, orthotic devices, &c). And of course there is the CareTec II, a TENS/EMS device that uses electrotherapy to relieve chronic and acute pain. Although the CareTec II is an effective way to relieve musculoskeletal pain, it is not a cure for tarsal tunnel syndrome. The treatment for the condition itself must be devised by a physician, and in the meantime the CareTec may be employed to simulate the nerves and alleviate the pain; needless to say, this unit should also be used as indicated by a doctor.
Related Read: An introduction to CareTec II TENS/EMS