A diagnosis of Ledderhose disease can come as a surprise since you may not have any noticeable symptoms in the early stages. Your doctor or podiatrist may find it when examining your foot for another complaint. This condition is a thickening of the tissues along the sole or elsewhere on your foot. It's a progressive disease, so a bump or tumor usually develops eventually along with pain. The lump starts small and doesn't cause many problems, but can eventually require surgery due to pain and difficulty walking. Here are some of the treatments that might help your condition when it is still in the early stages.
Custom Orthotics And Shoes
Foot comfort is important when you have Ledderhose disease. The thickening of tissue can make walking awkward or even painful. Once the tumor develops, you may feel like you're walking on a piece of gravel. One solution to this problem is to choose shoes approved by a podiatrist and to consider having custom orthotics made. The custom insoles provide padding for your foot and help distribute weight more evenly. They can be made from a mold of your foot so space is created to cradle the tumor for increased comfort.
When the tissues in your foot thicken, they also tighten. This can limit the range of motion in your feet and eventually cause problems with walking or increased pain. A physical therapist can teach stretching exercises that help keep your foot limber so you maintain full mobility. Physical therapy may entail other treatments too such as foot massage that helps with pain and stiffness. A physical therapist can also help with mobility aids as your condition progresses. You might need a splint or cane to help you walk in a way that doesn't put too much pressure on your foot.
Steroid injections in your foot might be useful in the early stages of Ledderhose disease. The corticosteroids are injected into the growth to cause it to shrink and to help with pain. Steroids are not a cure and won't affect the progression of the disease. However, they might be helpful when the condition causes foot pain. Once the growth becomes a large size, steroids may not be as effective.
While Ledderhose disease is a progressive condition, its rate of growth is unpredictable. You may experience periods of slow growth and times where it seems like there is no change in your condition. Other times, the growth of the lump can quickly accelerate. In the initial stages, you may not require treatment at all. Your doctor or podiatrist may just monitor your foot and track your symptoms until treatments are indicated. Whether you need treatment right away or not, you'll want to work closely with your healthcare team to manage your case of Ledderhose disease so you can maintain an active lifestyle without foot pain.
To learn more, contact a company like Dupuytren's Disease Support Group.