Has Your Capsulitis Been Misdiagnosed as Morton’s Neuroma?

Too many patients with foot pain in the front of the foot are misdiagnosed with Morton’s neuroma when they are really suffering from capsulitis. While the two conditions have similar symptoms, treatments for Morton’s neuroma include surgery, whereas treatments for capsulitis do not. 

If you have been through the pain and expense of unnecessary surgery to correct a condition you do not have, you may well be a victim of podiatry malpractice. If this is the case, Dental & Podiatry Malpractice Lawyers of New York may be able to file a successful lawsuit on your behalf and win you substantial damages.

Capsulitis & Morton’s Neuroma: Two Distinct Conditions That Cause Similar Pain

In order to understand how podiatry malpractice may have resulted from a podiatrist’s lack of competence or negligence, let’s take a look at the two disorders and how they differ:


Capsulitis is an inflammation of the ligament on the bottom of the foot, resulting from damage to a joint capsule at the ball of the foot. The most common cause of capsulitis is an abnormal structure that forces the ball of the foot to bear excessive pressure and overstretches the ligament that attaches one of the toe bones to one of the metatarsal bones. A bunion and/or a second toe that’s longer than the big toe may contribute to the condition.

Known causes of capsulitis are wearing poorly fitting footwear or high heels and performing repetitive activities that bend the toes (e.g. climbing ladders). The most common symptom of capsulitis is pain under the affected joint. Patients describe feeling as if they have a smooth stone or marble in their shoes. Though walking exacerbates the pain, the condition progressively worsens the longer it goes without being treated.

Treatments for capsulitis include:

  • Resting the foot and applying ice packs help reduce pain and swelling
  • Oral medications — NSAIDS and/or a short course of oral corticosteroids
  • Taping or splinting the foot temporarily
  • Performing exercises that stretch the affected ligament
  • Changes the type of shoes worn and wearing orthotic pads or devices
  • Discontinuing activities believed to have caused the condition
  • Cortisone injections into the affected area

Morton’s Neuroma

Morton’s neuroma is also a painful condition that affects the ball of your foot, most commonly in the area between the third and fourth toes. Like capsulitis, it gives patients the sensation that they have a pebble inside their shoes.

Morton’s neuroma, however, involves a thickening of the tissue around one of the nerves leading to your toes, rather than a damaged ligament. The affected nerves often cause sharp, burning pain and numbness as well as the pebble sensation. Both conditions are more common in people with foot deformities, such as bunions, hammertoes, high arches or flat feet, and both are worsened by improper footwear.

Though some of the same therapeutic methods used to treat capsulitis are employed in treating Morton’s neuroma — rest, orthotics, cortisone injections — in severe cases surgery is frequently performed to remove the offending tissue.

When Your Podiatrist Is Guilty of Malpractice

Though even doctors make mistakes, if your podiatrist has put you through the expense, pain, and extended recovery time of an unnecessary operation, Dental & Podiatry Malpractice Lawyers of New York will fight aggressively to bring you a just outcome. We know how painful foot surgery is, and how quickly medical and related bills multiply. We are also aware of the fact that foot surgery, like any surgery, involves risks of serious complications, compromising your health and sometimes endangering your life.

If your podiatrist has demonstrated negligence in any of the following ways, our podiatry malpractice attorney, Lawrence M. Karam, PC, is prepared to litigate:

  • Failed to take a comprehensive medical history
  • Failed to administer all necessary diagnostic tests 
  • Failed to advise you to get a second opinion if he/she was unsure of the diagnosis

Once you become our client, Lawrence Karam will fully investigate all medical records, consult with experts in podiatry and orthopedics as necessary, and check into whether there have been any previous accusations of malpractice brought against your podiatrist.

Damages We Will Seek

Depending on the particular circumstances of your case, we may sue for a broad range of damages, including:

  • Medical and rehabilitation costs
  • Lost income, present and future
  • Replacement services (e.g. house-cleaning, lawn mowing, child care)
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

At Dental & Podiatry Malpractice Lawyers of New York, we take all podiatry malpractice matters very seriously. If you have been caused unnecessary pain, had unnecessary surgery, or have had proper treatment delayed because of misdiagnosis, we will give you excellent ongoing legal support. We have a fine track record of successful litigation and will do everything in our power to win you every dollar of compensation you deserve.

About the Author
Of all the different areas in medical malpractice, it is podiatry malpractice that has had a particular interest to me. With 42 years practicing law and representing hundreds of victims of malpractice, I have created a law practice in which my clients are comfortable knowing that their case is being handled with my personal attention, in the most professional manner, and without unreasonable delays.