Plantar Fibroma

Do you have a lump or bump on your foot?

Don't know what it is?

Q & A

What is a Plantar Fibroma? 

A Plantar Fibroma is a  firm, nodular mass that usually forms in the arch of the foot. These can occur as a single mass called Plantar Fibroma or in clusters which are collectively called Plantar Fibromatosis. These nodules are non-cancerous tumors that form within a ligament in the arch of the foot called the Plantar Fascia. Frequently, they will slowly enlarge and may cause pain while walking due to their location in the weight-bearing surface of the foot. In 10% of the cases, patients will also demonstrate similar lumps in the palms of the hands called Dupuytren’s Contracture.

 

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is typically made by clinical exam. Biopsy of the masses is not recommended as the act of biopsy may cause the fibroma to enlarge. If the mass is surgically removed, a definitive diagnosis is provided by microscopic examination by a pathologist.

 

Treatment 

Treatment is aimed at symptomatic relief. Dr. Tien may recommend padding or offloading the area to reduce pressure. Custom functional foot orthotics will take the strain off of the plantar fascia ligament and may help the fibromas shrink in size. Surgical excision of the mass requires removal of most of the surrounding plantar fascia. Simple excision of the mass without removal of the entire ligament generally results in recurrence of the mass. Whenever surgery is contemplated, the patient should wear a functional foot orthotic following the surgery. The orthotic helps to accommodate for the loss of the plantar fascia and its effect on foot function.

Other Commonly Found Masses in the Foot and Ankle:

 

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