BACKGROUND:
The effectiveness of corticosteroid injection for the treatment of Morton's neuroma is unclear. In addition, most of the studies related to it are case-control or retrospective case series. The purpose of this study was to compare the effectiveness between corticosteroid injection associated with local anesthetic and local anesthetic alone (placebo control group) for the treatment of Morton's neuroma.

METHODS:
Forty-one patients with a diagnosis of Morton's neuroma were randomized to receive 3 injections of either a corticosteroid plus a local anesthetic or a local anesthetic alone. The patients and the researcher who collected data were blinded to the treatment groups. The visual analog scale for pain and the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Score (metatarsophalangeal/interphalangeal score) were obtained at baseline, after each injection, and at 3 and 6 months after the last injection.

RESULTS:
There were no significant between-group differences in terms of pain and function improvement at 3 and 6 months after treatment completion in comparison with baseline values. At the end of the study, 17 (48.5%) patients requested surgical excision of the neuroma: 7 (44%) in the experimental group and 10 (53%) in the control group ( P = 1.0).

CONCLUSION:
The injection of a corticosteroid plus a local anesthetic was not superior to a local anesthetic alone in terms of pain and function improvement in patients with Morton's neuroma.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:
Level I, randomized controlled trial.





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