Some women love high heels. But research suggests that trading in comfort for height can also lead to a painful nerve disorder called Morton's Neuroma.
According to the researchers, a majority of women who suffer from the condition describe it as “walking on razor blades.” The Economic Times reports that the occurrence of the Morton's Neuroma has doubled in past decade in the U.K., and researchers blame the increased use of high heels and ill-fitted footwear for the sharp increase in the number of sufferers.
The latest study has revealed that women have an eightfold higher risk of developing the disease than men. Among the number of sufferers studied during the research, scientists found that a majority of sufferers were women between ages 40 and 69.
During the study, researchers analyzed data for patients who were admitted to the hospital for treatment of the condition. The team found that between 2004-2005, nearly 1,179 women were hospitalized. However, the number increased to 2,532 between 2014-2015, an increase of 115 percent.
“Increasing awareness of Morton's Neuroma can only be a good thing, not least because numbness in the foot could be a sign of other potentially life-altering conditions, such as diabetes," said lead researcher Andrew Craig from the Bradford Teaching Hospital's NHS Foundation Trust.
With people who suffer from Morton's Neuroma, the nerve gets surrounded by fibrous tissue. The condition results in inflammation, compression and irritation of the nerve. The sufferer experiences severe pain at the base of the toes and the balls of the foot. Treatment options include surgical removal of the affected nerve, steroid injection and wearing special soles.
The complete study results were recently presented at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.